Christmas recipes: Luwombo sauce

        While chicken is the most commonly cooked meat in these tender and smoked banana leaves, other meats such as beef, goat meat, and pork can also be prepared the same way.

        If chicken is your desired meat, you are better off working with skinless and boneless drumsticks as they can withstand long cooking time.


        2 ½ kgs chicken, pork or beef. Cut these into small pieces

        2 onions. Half them and then sliced crosswise to ease grinding

        1 cup sliced mushrooms

        4 chopped tomatoes

        1 chicken stock cube


        Black pepper (optional)

        Other necessities

        Banana fibres

        Banana stalk, cleaned well and split into two and later smaller pieces that can fit at the bottom of the pan of choice

        Fairly smoked tender banana leaves. If you do not know how to smoke them or even the type of banana leaves to get, you can buy already smoked ones from the market

        A pan big enough to take in the sauce packages without squeezing them.


        Slightly fry the meat of your choice in an oiled frying pan until it turns brown. That helps to give it a distinct taste as well as quicken cooking. Do this in small batches to avoid crowding the pan which could lead to half-baked results. Then remove and set aside.

        Add 2 to 3 tablespoons of oil to the same pan, add the onion slices and over fairly high flame, fry them until them start browning.

        Add the mushrooms and cook for 5 minutes. Then add the tomatoes, chicken stock cube, salt, and black pepper (if you desire).

        Add a little water and let the contents cook to thicken the soup just a bit.

        Prepare the leaves to receive your sauce contents.

        Place a portion of meat and some of the tomato-onion sauce in the centre of a leaf.

        Fold the leaf from the sides then wrap from the ends to make at least a double layer. Tie into a package using a thin banana fibre.

        Repeat the process for the other packages.

        Prepare your pan. This entails putting sliced banana stalks and then placing banana fibres to hold ordinary banana leaves. On these, carefully place the different packages as they are somewhat fragile.

        Tie up the ordinary banana leaves using the fibres then cover with a few more leaves. Thereafter, cover with a large saucepan to ensure that the steam is in place, thus cooking the contents optimally.

        Cook for about 1 hour.

        Then remove and place in a dish, ready to serve.

        Enjoy your meal.