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Issue 5.0

yummy Dec 2018






Check out what makes a Christmas table unique

Explore our shopping basket, gift guides and more

home Yummy.can Food.make Life 1

Holiday drinks you



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t’s not surprising that we at Yummy are absolute suckers for Christmas! Well, I say we but honestly I think I’m the overenthusiastic one here. I actually had to physically stop myself from buying my entire team novelty Santa hats while Christmas tree shopping in November and blasting carols off my laptop in the office. I’ve basically had to keep my childlike excitement under wraps... till now (haha, yes I’m shamelessly blasting carols as I type this!). The festive season is finally here and I hope you’re just as excited to kick back and soak it all up. My laptop will collect dust as I happily pack on the pounds and take full advantage of the opportunity to dress my child in a ridiculous festive outfit. I’m currently on the hunt for a Christmas pudding costume but will humbly settle for a turkey! Aside from the frantic Christmas shopping, inevitable hangovers and heated debates over where to host Christmas dinner, it really is the best time of year. This months magazine captures all the sparkle, grub and of course booze that we highly suggest you indulge in this season. A few chefs were kind enough to rustle up a couple of festive dishes to help inspire your own Christmas Day feast while others have shared their ideas on how to spruce up your table settings. We also have some incredible cocktails that you can whip up at home or suggestions on where to step out if you can’t deal with the idea of lifting a finger in the coming weeks! This month we partnered up with the incredible Juliet Kennedy of Greenspoon to produce a little gift for our readers; our

Michelle Slater

very first recipe calendar. We spent three wonderful days in her lovely home shooting, eating and furiously Instagramming every moment and the final product will hopefully hang up in your kitchen throughout 2019. From the gorgeous images to the delicious recipes, we hope this calendar will encourage you to try some of our recipes that exclusively feature local producers from Bateleur craft beer to decadent Absolute chocolate. Keep an eye on our social pages for pointers on where to grab your free copy. Let’s face it though, the most important part of Christmas, aside from sharing time with loved ones, of course, is the gifts! Trouble is, buying meaningful presents can be such a bleeding mission, especially here where we’re unfortunately not always spoiled for choice within retail. So our little office elves (they’re going to hate that I just called them that) went on the hunt for a few locally available items for everyone in your family from the techie to the foodie to give you some inspiration in the gift department. Before I go, I just want to reflect back on the year and say a big thank you to my team, our incredible contributors and of course stunning photographers that bring our ideas to life! I also want to thank all our clients who make this food industry what it is and give us more to write about. And finally, you, the avid readers who have stuck by us and push us to do more and be better. I’d like to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. May your December be filled with some well-deserved downtime, a whole lot of festive cheer.



Michelle Slater MANAGING EDITOR:

Sanaa Mughal STAFF WRITER:


Juliet Kennedy, Jmwai, Wanja Wohoro, Sabah Jabeen, Anyiko Owoko, Soni Adriance, Josiah Kahiu, Kyle Snow, Jackson Biko PHOTOGRAPHY:

William Namuks, Patrick Gitau, Peter Irungu, Kenyan Library, Simaloi Mensa, JMwai, Kiyah Cross, Brian Siambi DESIGN:

John Njoroge, Brian Siambi DIGITAL TEAM:

Fred Miwthiga, Sylvia Onsoti DISTRIBUTION:


Susan Gathara, Wambui Kogi, Daniel Muthiani, Jane Naitore, Angela Omondi, Vanessa Wanjiku IT:



0711 22 22 22 EMAIL:


Ramco Printing


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VOL 5.0 DEC 2018


28 46


42 FINGER ON THE PULSE 11 20 16 22

New and Events: News Feed New Restaurants: New on the block Anyiko’s List: What’s Hot Kahawa Allstars: Lulu Kitololo


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63 FEATURES 30 48 42 46

Art of Tabling: Exquisite tables Tried & Tasted: Family time Sweet Spot: Christmas sweet tooth Home Grown: Chocolate salami

20 AND MORE.. 35 25 71 58

On the Menu: 4 meats, 4 ways Yummy Wishlist: Christmas basket Spotlight: Mombasa spotlight Nightlife: Merry making guide


IT’S A FEAST-IVAL It’s a festive celebration Sarova Stanley invites you and your loved ones to a selection of festive meals between Christmas Eve and New Years with free swimming for the whole family and a live band to keep you dancing into the new year. Sarova Stanley Hotel Nairobi 24th Dec 2018 – 1st Jan 2019 Children 2500, Adults 4000-4500pp

CHRISTMAS IN STYLE ‘Tis the season to be merry Spend this festive season in style at Ibis Styles Hotel! Enjoy buffet meals with unlimited cocktails and then kick off 2019 at one of their two New Years parties and a hangover brunch the day after. Ibis Styles, Westlands 24th Dec 2018 – 1st Jan 2019 1500pp – 2,999pp

CELEBRATE A LEGACY All I want for Christmas… Nothing beats a 5-course menu on Christmas Eve as you usher in Fairmont’s 144th anniversary! Finish off your year with a 5-course dinner at Tatu Restaurant while a live pianist serenades you into the new year. Fairmont The Norfolk 24th Dec - 25th Dec, 31st Dec 2018 6,700pp, 6,500-7,500pp (adults), 3,250 (6-12y), 6,900pp

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SUNNY SEASONS GREETINGS Christmas in an Oasis Have a Merry Christmas filled with traditional festive dishes and a live band at Southern Sun Mayfair! Southern Sun Mayfair Nairobi 25th Dec 2018 3,800 pp

CHRISTMAS WITH A VIEW The ultimate New Year’s party Usher in the new year with DJ Turnz (The Rock Master) at the Attic Rooftop Bar. Enjoy breakfast and accommodation specials at 13,000 (single) and 15,000 (double). Park Inn by Radisson Nairobi 31st Dec 2018 Free Entry

VINTAGE NOËL Christmas in the city This world-class hotel is offering you buffets with festive delicacies, live entertainment and complimentary swimming for the family! Finish your year off with a barbeque buffet and toast to the new year with a complimentary glass of sparkling wine or soft drink of your choice. The Hilton Nairobi 24th Dec - 25th Dec, 31st Dec 2018 3,500pp, 4,000pp, 4,800pp


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SEASON OF LIGHTS A night in Paris Experience a taste of Paris at dusitD2 this New Years Eve with live cooking stations, live music and festive fireworks. The DEN at dusitD2 31st Dec 2018-12-04 6,000pp

STAR-STUDDED CELEBRATION A star-studded affair Sarova Whitesands wants you to welcome in the New Year being serenaded by local musical heavyweights Gilad, Mercy Masika and Sauti Sol. Coupled with a delectable culinary experience and fireworks, it will be a night to remember! Sarova Whitesands Beach Resort & Spa 24th Dec - 25th Dec, 31st Dec 2018 for reservations contact 0719 022 000





Party at Yul’s this New Years Eve with Sanaipei Tande and Dj Delph.

Celebrate with Donnaccia, Allan Strange, and more at Papa Remo Beach.

Enjoy the best of house, EDM, reggae and dubstep.

When: 31st Dec 2018 Where: Yul’s Aquadrom, Mombasa How much: 4,000pp

When: 29th Dec 2018 Where: Papa Remo Beach, Watamu How much: 1,000 pp (Strictly Over 21)

When: 30th – 2nd Jan 2018 Where: Distant Relatives Kilifi How much: From 5,000Ksh




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The Nairobi Cocktail Festival kicked off with a two-day function on Saturday December 1st and Sunday, December 2nd. Both days saw plenty of attendees explore and enjoy over 20 cocktails made with their favourite brands, sweet and savoury bittings and great company.


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This season, publicist to the stars Anyiko Owoko finds herself caught up at work in December. She dreams of a Merry Christmas as she recalls her best moments of 2018, picks her gifts for the holidays before listening to her favourite Christmas playlists. MOST MEMORABLE PERSON & CONCERT OF 2018 As we cap off 2018, it’s hard to pick the best of the best but it would have to be attending Burna Boy’s first major concert in Nairobi at Thrift Social. He performed all songs off his latest album: The “Outside” among other hits, alongside a live band. Meeting his mother and manager, Bose Ogulu, in Nairobi was inspiring. From my conversations with Bose, I learnt: you could be way older than most people working in the entertainment industry but still steer one’s career to success if you shun trends and focus on what makes your artist unique. FAVOURITE CHILL OUT SPOTS FOR THE HOLIDAY SEASON My all-time favourite chill spot is Maasai Mara. It doesn’t really matter what day of the year I am marking. Apart from the wildebeest migration (although that’s pretty epic to witness too), there are several exciting activities in the Mara. From the magical balloon rides to breathtaking game drives, I never tire of seeing beautiful wildlife and the scenery of acacia trees against the backdrop of the sunset. MY CHRISTMAS GIFT LIST I love bold things and when it comes to jewellery, Adele Dejak is my home for luxurious African inspired jewellery handcrafted in Kenya. The materials to making their ornaments not only come from


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elements traditionally used by different African tribes, their design sometimes mirrors the original. Their latest eco-bold collection tagged ‘LOVE’ is a perfect Christmas gift. The collection’s rings, neckpieces and bracelets, among other pieces are sourced from pure, ethical materials and handcrafted with a special focus on men’s pieces. You can order via or visit their store in Village Market or workshop at Kiambu. I also recently discovered unique handcrafted aprons made in Kenya and from different colourful and fun prints by @ shopwamboikay Instagram Page. These are my personal favourites and best pick for the holidays, as I plan to be cooking up a storm. CHRISTMAS PLAYLIST This Christmas, I have 3 playlists revolving: The Decimator album, A Legendary Christmas album (John Legend) and Coke Studio Africa’s Christmas Playlist. Celebrated Kenyan music producer teamed up with Bon’eye of P-Unit to start Decimal Records record label that has signed new Kenyan acts in the music scene, including Jack Rooster, Brian Nadra and Konkodi. As for the edgiest and funky Christmas Playlist, check out Coke Studio Africa’s Christmas Carols Playlist on YouTube. Have yourselves a great holiday and catch you in Feb 2019!



This holiday season, we find out where our local celebrities like to go and what they like to do!

Marcus Olang’ Marcus Olang’ is a writer by nature, photographer by habit, strategist by practice. He’s also the Founder of Courage Stories ( THE SHACK AT MAGHARIBI PLACE This has been my secret spot: The Shack at Magharibi Place, Nairobi West. The place is one of those little places you’d ordinarily just walk or drive past. They don’t really have seating space, only a couple of tables and benches outside their stall. Such simple spaces appeal to me. Just you, your seat and the open air. The opportunity to do a bit of people-watching with the street and sidewalk close by is also a welcome treat. @Marcusolang

Philippa Ndisi Philippa Ndisi-Herrmann is an award-winning Poet, Photographer & Filmmaker moonlighting from time to time as DJ & Intuitive Guide. ABYSSINIA If you’re ever looking for me, you’ll find me at Abyssinia, Westlands. I’m there most of the time. I’m a Veggie now, so Shiro and Zima Mojat are dishes I highly recommend. Another spot I love to romance my friends at is Amani Gardens, off Rhapta Road. Tall trees, lush garden, super chirpy staff, delicious gluten-free pizza and when you get the itis, you can take a snooze on the grass. What more can you ask for? @Onethirstyfish

Muthoni The Drummer Queen Muthoni Drummer Queen is a singer/rapper/drummer as well as a creative entrepreneur running two festivals: Africa Nouveau and Blankets & Wine. THAI RESTAURANT For my birthday this year, friends and I took over a tiny Thai restaurant on the 1st floor of Bishan Plaza, Westlands. It was GREAT! The food is good and very reasonably priced. The whole aesthetic is very “kibanda” and I loved that we could bring our own wine and cake (with no extra corkage). The combination of good food and authentic ambience plus the ability to make it into our own makes the restaurant a win for me! @MuthoniDQ 18 18

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Playing THE HITS


Managing Editor Sanaa Mughal takes full advantage of the Christmas season and what it comes with, including learning how to be a healthy grown up.

t’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas, and that means everyone is bringing their A game! Good for them, even better for us! As you wind down this holiday season, allow me to give you some advice on where you need to go, what to do and perhaps, a new goal for 2019! NEW RESTAURANT: LOCAL GRILL Located at the Village Market, Local Grill is a South African franchise focused on steaks and the study of meat. A friend and I settled into the in and requested that the ‘meat man’ Kyle take charge of our dish selection and head bartender Jeremiah wow us with his cocktails. Our trust was well placed because they did not disappoint! From the starters to the dessert, every dish was a surprise: Chicken coated in tahini and skewered with sugar cane, grilled octopus and a side of the South African delicacy Biltong. Our main meal was an extra special coffee aged steak (50 days) with bone marrow and fillet, with a side of sweet potato mash and pepper sauce. And finally, a Jack Daniels tart for dessert. It’s always a pleasure to meet people who know their craft so well. Kyle is exactly what he says he is- a meat man dedicated to finding the best meats Kenya has to offer and has even gone so far to have two cold rooms at the Village Market basement. These guys are so serious that they offer a unique Meat Experience dinner for 6 to 10 people where guests get to try different cuts and a tour of meats by Kyle himself who calls the experience “a chance to play the hits.” The experience was made better (Imagine


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NEW ON THE BLOCK that) by Jeremiah- the bartender whose energy and passion shows in his cocktails. I’m not much of a cocktail person so you’ll believe me when I say that Jeremiah achieved the perfect balance of alcohol and taste, going so far to test a new drink on me that I’m hoping will be named after me (Fingers crossed!). The Local Grill is a cosy restaurant that is in a mall but doesn’t feel like it. I will definitely be going back and I hope you will too! NEW RESTAURANT: HOT DOG SPOT The Alchemist is a street food symbol without actually being a street, and the newest addition to this is the Hot Dog Republik. Short & sweet menu and no-onecares-what-you-look-like-eating is what you can expect at this stand. My personal favourite is the Chicago (That onion crunch is life) and the casual environment is a much-needed break from complex menus and long queues. Be warned that it can get a little messy and at 500Ksh, it might be a little pricey for a hot dog, but hey, when the craving hits (or the alcohol), you really don’t regret it!

much bigger with a wider range and another that highlighted her award-winning goat gouda. Here’s what I learned from Delia: • Have a range of mild to strong cheeses of varying textures and flavours • Arrange your cheese board from the mildest to the strongest • Grapes are not your only option. Pears go surprisingly well as well. • Your accompaniments for the cheese need range as well- Jams, pickles, crackers, pesto, dried kale, sun-dried tomatoes and more! • If you find the whole thing a little intimidating, Just give Brown’s a shout and they’ll set one up for you.

NEW CONCEPT: ZAZI BAR Other than during Ramadhan, I don’t do any other type of fasting so when a workmate told me about Zazi Bar and their juice cleanses, I was sceptical. With a little bar at the Alchemist, Zazi bar is not what you expect. Quirky, perhaps a little odd but intriguing. Run by youngins who care about physical and mental wellness, I was taken through a series of personal questions and they drafted a 7-day juice cleanse for me that would reset my system and set the theme of 2019 for me. My cleanse was made of coconut water and different juices, with dates for snacking plus chamomile and sage herbal tea. My verdict: Doing a cleanse is NOT easy. The hunger was definitely an issue (and of course, hangry vibes). I’ll be honest, my 7day cleanse became a 3 day one, perhaps because I wasn’t prepared. So here’s my advice, know what you’re getting into and make it a priority. NEW EXPERIENCE: BROWN’S CHEESE BOARD Honestly, am I even adult enough to put out a cheese board? I don’t know, but in an attempt to be a little more serious in life and act the part as the editor of Yummy, I gave Delia from Brown’s cheese a call and she graciously agreed to teach me. Firstly, cheese boards are BEAUTIFUL. At the Brown’s shop in Village Market, Delia set up two cheese boards for me: One that was





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LULU KITOLOLO We sit down with the bubbly artist who talks to us about her brand, the Sunshine Club and goals for the future. Tell us a little about yourself I trained as a communication designer and worked at an agency for a little while. I really didn’t like it so I decided to go back to school and studied African Studies which i loved! After graduation, I worked at a sustainable development company for about 3 years. After that, I decided to work for myself because i needed a creative outlet. What has been the greatest moment so far? When I started, I did small events just to get off the ground. The first event was in December 2016 and the response was amazing! From that moment, I haven’t looked back. Where do you get your inspiration from? I get my inspiration from Africa. Everything from nature, crafts from around the continent, textiles and patterns. You said you studied African Studies, how does that impact what you do? It has had a great impact on my clients for example earlier this year, I was working on graphic recording for conferences and some comments people made were things like, ‘You have a good understanding of the issues we discussed!’


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Have you had a chance to collaborate with people and what has been your favourite? We did a couple of bag designs with Sandstorm last year. It was fun to work with a different brand and to see everything come together. Which artists do you love? There’s a Kenyan artist Wangechi Mutu who I love. She’s an artist and an activist which you can tell through the messages she conveys. I bumped into her many years ago when we lived in the same building and that’s how I became a fan. Tell us a little about your subscription box It’s called The Sunshine Club. Every month, we put together a surprise package of our products and goodies with our design and sometimes we partner with brands. When you sign up, you don’t actually know what you’ll get inside; that’s the surprise! Do you have any other things you like to do? Swimming is one of my favourite things to do. I write as well; I have a blog where i write about my own experiences such as how I balance work while being a mum.

Why the Afri- love festival? I got the name from my blog. A lot of it is celebrating African creativity. I had thought about the festival for years and this year, my mentor challenged me to ‘do something big’ and I just decided to give it a go. We wanted to showcase creativity so we had a market and invited other vendors. We also had a program of workshops and talks so people could do their shopping and learn something new while at it. So what does the future look like for you? I really want us to expand our product line, explore fabrics, home decor items and such type of things. We also want to go into new markets by moving beyond Nairobi. We wouldn’t be Yummy if we didn’t ask your top spots to eat. My favourite Pizza is from Mediterraneo but I also love Seven because they have great seafood. My comfort food is cake so I’m always on the hunt for new spots for cake. I love Indian sweets too - Sweety sweets is my go-to spot!


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Here at Yummy, we consider ourselves holiday season experts so let us guide you through your shopping list, Christmas menu and more


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What's in



Still not managed to get round to your Christmas shopping and need a little nudge in the festive department? Don’t you worry! We’ve put together a list of our must-have Christmas goodies to toss in your shopping basket.

STOCKING FILLERS The great thing with stockings is they are cheap, cheerful and easy to customise. The main component is the candy and we recommend stocking up on classic candy canes, chocolate coins, creamy toffees and decadent chocolate bars. Montys in Sarit Centre, Sweet Street in Village Market and Chandarana all have plenty of fun imported confectioneries to choose from. Once you’ve got the candy down, throw in other novelty gifts such as miniature games and little trinkets.

2. FANCY A DRINK You’re bound to find yourself hosting over the next few weeks so why not change things up and try the new Kenyan Originals tropical fruit ciders. Unique flavours include Mango & Ginger, Passion Fruit & Lime, Lime & Ginger and Pineapple & Mint. And for those non-drinkers or designated drivers, Kenyan Originals also have equally refreshing ice-teas also packed in quirky designer bottles. Find them stocked in Zucchini and Village Supermarket.

5. CHRISTMAS PUDDING The festive season is all about indulgence and nothing says indulgence more than Christmas pudding and mince pies! You can be brave and make them at home or keep it simple and buy them. Gilanis in ABC bring in all sorts of imported Christmas treats including the perfect crumbly mince pies! Alternatively, check out Greenspoon’s online store which has a dedicated Christmas section with plenty of locally made traditional pudding options.

3. DECK THE HALLS Not to keen on a tree but still was to spruce up the house for Christmas? Keep it simple and get your DIY on. String up fairy lights, pile some baubles in a vase and dress your table with jewel colour candles and Christmas crackers. Major supermarkets including Carrefour and Chandarana have plenty of fun decor options under one roof for a pocket-friendly price!

4. CAN’T COOK, WON’T COOK! Not keen on cooking but still want to do something special on Christmas? Check out for a comprehensive events listings this season. Most major restaurants and hotels will be hosting special Christmas menus. While you won’t be able to take the standard postChristmas meal nap at the table, you won’t have to worry about the dishes or booze running out!

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Gifting On

We understand that around this season finding the right gift can be difficult. To help you out, our team has put together a simple gift guide for the foodie, techie and creative in your life as well as some gifts for the last minute shopper in all of us.


Masala chai, turmeric chai, rooibos tea, zingy mint and green tea, mango mania tea and ginger lemongrass black tea are just a few of the flavours you can combine and make your own hamper. Throw in a box of their cookies and Christmas pudding to complete the package. Retails from Kshs. 580.


Your favourite foodie will love the selection of nut butters Linda offers. From classic peanut butter to almond butter to chilli chocolate cashew butter, they have something for everyone. Check out all the butters on @ LindasNutbutters and Linda will deliver them to your doorstep.


These aprons feature simple elephant, antelope and giraffe drawings masterfully stitched onto aprons, oven gloves and tea cozies. The aprons come in adult and kid sizes so get a matching pair for your loved ones at their store in Lang’ata Link Shops, Karen.

Retails between Kshs. 400 and Kshs. 1,000.

Retails from Kshs. 1275.


Smart watches are a practical and functional gift. Your techie friend will enjoy syncing their watch to all their devices. Find the right model at the official Samsung store at Two Rivers Mall. Retails from Kshs. 13,000.


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Cinnamon, mulberry and mistletoe are just some of the scents The Candle House is offering this festive season. Beautifully decorated with delicate mistletoe at the bottom, beaded Christmas trees and stockings, these will make a lovely gift to add to a last-minute Christmas hamper. They have unscented options too. Contact them at 0722562488 and get them all.


There are festive menus all around town so why not buy an EatOut gift voucher and treat your loved ones to a Christmas meal at their favourite restaurant. Available at Retail from Kshs. 1,000.

Retails from Kshs. 600.


It’s Christmas Eve, you’re on your way to a family feast and you realize that you forgot to get your nephew or niece a gift! Take a deep breath, relax and make your way to your nearest Toyworld. Pick from a range of toys such as child-friendly makeup kits, electric racing cars and massive teddy bears and get them wrapped for you in the store. Find the right gift any Toyworld branch. Retails from Kshs. 3,000.


After a busy year, a spa day is a perfect way to start your holiday season. Pick from a wide range of treatments offered in various spas in Nairobi or go for a package that combines all your favourite treatments into one blissful session. Find your perfect package at


Give your loved one the gift of seamless multitasking without the hassle of holding their device as they try to work. This versatile gift can be used in the kitchen while cooking, at your desk and even in bed. Find one on Retails from Kshs. 417.

Retails from Kshs. 2,425.


This lookbook/anthology/designer account fusion is a great coffee table addition for any creative. Featuring local designers Adele Dejak, Wambui Kibue, Anyango Mpinga just to name a few.

Order your copy online on

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CONSCIOUS FOODIE enchiladas or other Mexican dishes that work well as both sides and centrepiece dishes, and can be easily made vegetarian.

HowSTILLto BEbeHEALTHY merry & Wanja Wohoro is a self-taught singer and freelance writer. She is a practising vegan and is giving us her guide to having a veggie Christmas

PICK A CENTREPIECE DISH: An enormous leg of ham pierced with aromatic cloves sits at the centre of Christmas dinner in my parent’s household, as it has for many years. I am a big believer in showing off and glitzing things up when it comes to holiday events. Last year I made a large vegetarian meatloaf with gravy. It was delicious and definitely drew a few curious carnivore eyes to my meal. Try to find one central dish to wow your guests and family members. Additionally, revolve your side dishes around this focal point as it will help inspire your choices. PICK YOUR SIDES: The more the merrier! Christmas is about a little extra decadence so don’t hold back. If you’re torn between two vegetable side dishes or starches, why not do both? We all know Christmas leftovers are one of the best things about the holidays. Whether it be sticky and sweet roasted pumpkin, or creamy garlic and tahini pasta; explore recipes that you don’t usually have time for on your busy weeknights.


had my first vegetarian Christmas three years ago at the tender age of 21. I spent hours on the days leading up to the Big Day scrolling and scrolling through endless recipe websites trying to find a satisfying equivalent to my previously nyama-centric Christmas dinners. I found it challenging wading through unfamiliar festive food territories without direction. With a limited budget and no access to meat substitutes, it can seem like an impossible task to make anything truly special. There are so many demands when cooking for larger groups, trying to satisfy many tastes and even dietary requirements, but I have come to relish this task. Being a vegetarian in this season is the perfect opportunity to show people that plant-based food can be decadent, delicious and desirable to even the


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most ardent sceptics. Here are a few tips I have picked up in the last few years that have helped me come up with a Christmas meal that works for plant and meat eaters alike: PICK A CUISINE: This is almost always where I start when trying to organise a menu. It helps when trying to figure out what flavours, textures and ingredients you’re craving and how they work together. Coming from a household that does a fairly classic roast during Christmas, I tend to lean towards Italian and traditional western dishes when it comes to thinking about a vegetarian Christmas meal - but it doesn’t have to be this way! This year I am aiming to think further out of the box. Why not make a huge Thai curry filled with all your favourite things? Or perhaps

We thankfully live in an age where any recipe that we can possibly imagine is accessible online. However, it can be difficult to know the quality of some of these recipes, and whether the end result will actually taste as good as the pretty pictures suggest. Below is a list of my personal favourite websites for tasty vegetarian and vegan food. Try something new this holiday. Surprise yourself and your family with how creative and delicious vegetarian food can be. Nourish your body and satisfy your cravings this Christmas with a menu that is both healthy and hearty. Favourite Vegetarian and Vegan Recipe Websites

Check out one of my favourite recipes on www.yummy.


Photography by Meera

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the art of tabling It’s the time of the year when meals become exquisite presentations. Tables aren’t just tables anymore, they’re art. To celebrate this and give you some helpful tips on how you can make your tables at home epic, we’ve featured 3 spots that have impressed us the most.



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Find the recipe for the Dark Chocolate & Rose Mousse on

Antler cake stand from Furniture Palace

Use old liquor bottles as vases, painted tiles as coasters, antique tea cups for soup and side tables for extra seating.

Think 3D: Serve food on cake stands, place platters on wooden blocks and use different textured and coloured plates.

Green hand blown tumblers from Kitengela Glass

Mix and match: Mixing and matching crockery can achieve an elegant and composed look while adding a bold and eclectic flair to your table.

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Embrace the chaos. Not everything has to match, sometimes more is exactly what you need.

Yule Log from Opera Patisserie, Sankara. Available on order.

Bring out the old pans from the kitchen and use them as serving platters. It gives your table a rustic look.



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Herbs makes an excellent garish and decoration piece


Cake available on order from the Zen Garden Patisserie

Macaroons are a great table boost- They always look good, tiny enough to fit anywhere and tasty!

A tablecloth brings a sense of elegance and style to your set up. Match your cutlery to the patterns for that extra oomph!

Replace that one flower vase with multiple tiny ones to create a cosy effect


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Christmas Meats IN 4 WAYS As you prepare to cook a feast for your family during the holidays, we’ve gathered 4 chefs to share 4 unique Christmas dinner recipes, each focusing on a meat that you can experiment with!


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INGREDIENTS: • • • • • •

1 large fillet of white snapper (700g) with skin on 175g caster sugar 175g salt 175g grated raw beetroot 1 tbsp Dijon mustard 1 bunch fresh dill

TO SERVE: • • • •

Your choice of bread (I prefer dark rye) Unsalted butter Lemon wedges Freshly ground black pepper

RULE: The perfect cure should be half the weight of the fish you are using; the cure is made up of half sugar and half salt, so adjust your recipe according to how much your fish weighs. The beet element should be the same as the salt or sugar. DIRECTIONS: 1.



On The Menu




Beetroot Cured Snapper Christmas has always been a big family affair for Sarah. She grew up in England, where every Christmas Day would start with a lavish breakfast of Scottish Smoked Salmon, served with crustless brown bread slices, unsalted butter and lemon. Her childlike wonder of all things food stayed with her as she grew up and flew the nest for more exotic climes, where she made Kenya her home. Here, she’s spent her Christmases in the sun rather than the snow, and while she still loves a good turkey dinner, she enjoys putting her own twist on holiday classics using yummy local ingredients.




Check your fish has no scales and you have removed any bones with tweezers. Avoid washing it in water and instead use a damp cloth, then dry with kitchen towel. Squeeze out the excess liquid in the grated beetroot, then mix together with the salt and sugar. Lay the fish on a sheet of baking paper skin side down and pat the cure mix onto the flesh side so it’s completely covered. Wrap up the fish tightly in the paper then secure with cling film so you have a watertight parcel. Place this on a tray in the fridge and leave for 24 hours. The cure removes all the moisture from the fish, so be careful when you open up your parcel that you don’t cover yourself in bright pink liquid (it stains!). Scrape off the beetroot and cure mix, then splash the fish with water to rinse off the rest. Then completely dry the cured fish with kitchen towel and place on a clean piece of baking paper. Smother the flesh with the mustard and then chop up the dill and cover on top. Wrap it up again and return to the fridge for another 24 hours. There’s no need to rinse it again, the fish is ready to serve. Cut thin slices and eat with bread, butter and lemon to squeeze over. Delicious and beautiful!

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INGREDIENTS: • • • • • • • • • • • • •

300gms Pork Chops 1tbsp maple syrup Sprig Thyme Chef’s mixed spice Pinch Salt Pinch Black pepper 2bsp corn oil 50 gms baby potatoes A handful of baby carrots 50gms sugar snaps 2 cloves of garlic Olive oil Rosemary



On The Menu


Thyme and Maple Glazed Pork Chops with Spring Vegetables Chef Maureen has a great passion for food production and pastry. She started baking easy plain cakes as early as the age of four! In 2002, she enrolled at the Top Chef Culinary Institute of Arts and simultaneously trained with Executive Chef Huwyler at Lord Erroll and Executive Chef Gacheru from The Tamarind Nairobi. For Maureen, being a chef is not only about cooking. There’s a lot more that comes with the title and so the inhouse training exposed her over time to the principles of how a restaurant works right down to finishing off a good dish.


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7. 8.

Place the chops on a plate and season with a sprig of thyme, maple syrup, pepper and chef’s mixed spice. Cover with cling film and leave to rest for 30mins or overnight for better flavouring. While the meat is marinating, prepare your vegetables by cleaning and cutting to the desired shape. Boil the potatoes in a pan of hot salty water for 8 minutes and then add the rest of the vegetables for a further 2 minutes to maintain the crunchiness. In a pan, melt the butter and add the cloves of garlic. (To get more flavour from the garlic, crush them with the side of a knife) then fry the pork chops. When frying the pork chops, keep basting with olive oil mixed with rosemary. Remove when golden brown and finish in the oven for 5 to 10 mins at 180 degrees. Using the same pan the pork chops were fried in, toss the pre-cooked vegetables and add a little vegetable stock, leave to simmer for about 5 mins. Plate the meat and vegetables as desired on a plate. Serve with gravy. For Christmas, one can use a whole striploin of pork then carve for the guests as a centrepiece at the dining table.



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5-6kg oven-ready turkey, neck and giblets removed and kept for the gravy 1 onion, halved 1 lemon, halved Whole garlic, halved For the salt mix: 2 tbsp sea salt 1 tbsp thyme leaves 1 tsp peppercorns


100g butter 4 tbsp vegetable bouillon powder 1 lemon, zested




On The Menu



Roast Christmas Turkey John Muriithi is the Executive Chef at the Hilton Nairobi. A passionate professional by nature, he boasts 17 years of culinary experience in an impressive career spanning Europe and Africa. John is a well-renowned chef who has won awards at both national and international level of the Chaine des Rotisseurs competition and he brings in a dynamic and innovative energy to Nairobi’s diverse culinary scene.



Make the salt mix by grinding the salt with the thyme leaves and pepper in a spice grinder or using a pestle and mortar. Set the turkey in a roasting tin and gently push your fingers under the skin, starting from the neck, until you can push your whole hand in down the length of the breast. Take care not to tear the skin. Season the bird all over with the salt mix, inside and out and under the skin. Leave the turkey in the tin, breast-side up, and put in the fridge for a minimum of 2 hrs – the longer you salt it, the more succulent the turkey will be. For crispier skin, leave the turkey uncovered so it dries out. Tip the butter, vegetable stock powder and lemon zest into a small bowl and mix until completely combined. Cover and chill. Remove the turkey from the fridge an hour or so before you want to cook it. Remove the butter from the fridge to soften. Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4. Work out your cooking time based on 40 mins per kg for the first 4kg, plus 45 mins for every kg after that. Use your hands to spread the butter under the skin so that it covers the entire breast area and work it into the crevice between the thigh and the main body, then smooth the skin over with your hands. Put the onion, lemon halves, and garlic in the cavity. Cover the tin loosely with foil and roast for the calculated cooking time. Around 30 mins before the end of cooking, increase the oven temperature to 200C/180C, remove the foil, baste the turkey and return to the oven. When the turkey is brown and cooked, remove and leave to rest on a warm platter covered with foil for up to 1 hr. Yummy. Food. Drink. Life




INGREDIENTS: • 1Pc whole duck • 150Gr prunes • 2 Apple (sour) • Rosemary dry • Thyme dry • Marjoram dry • 2 Bay leaves • Salt • Pepper powder white • 100Gr clarified butter • 250Ml red wine • 250Ml poultry stock (chicken stock) • 30Ml port wine • 30Gr corn flour DIRECTIONS: 1.



On The Menu



Whole Roasted Christmas Duck Chef Marius is an executive chef from Germany and has been working in fine dining restaurants for more than 10 years. With humble beginnings as an apprentice in Germany, he has managed to work his way through Michelin star restaurants and Gault Millau awarded restaurants. He has worked in seven different countries including Indonesia and has brought this knowledge of international cuisine with him to Kenya. He has managed to add a touch of elegance and refinement to all the meals offered at the hotel with elaborate plating and well-paired dishes.


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Season the duck inside and out with salt, pepper, neat rosemary, marjoram and thyme. Wash one or two apples (depending on the size), cut into quarters and take the seeds out. Put them in the duck, then add 1 - 2 handfuls of the prunes to it. Sew up the duck or close (simply and well) with roulade needles. Leave to infuse overnight or for at least 6 hours. The next day preheats the oven to 200 ° C (top/bottom heat, circulating air: 180 ° C). Place the duck in a large roasting pan with clarified butter in the oven for about 2 hours. From time to time douse with your own frying fat. In the last half hour don’t pour more, so that the skin gets nice and crispy. Put the duck back in the oven on an extra tray. Just before serving, cut into pieces with the poultry shears and place the apple and prunes on an extra plate. The gravy from roasting pan is still needed for the sauce. For the sauce, drain ¾ of the fat of the duck. Pour the gravy with the red wine and poultry stock and try to scrape off the roast leftovers with a whisk or wooden spoon. Pour through a fine sieve into an extra pot and bring to a boil, reduce the sauce to half and season with herbs, salt, pepper and Port wine. Mix the cornflour with a whisk together with some cold water. Slowly add the mixture to the gravy until the sauce gets the right thickness, simmer for 5 minutes. Serve the duck together with some braised red cabbage and bread dumplings


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Christmas Roast

Meet Kyle Snow, regular steak lover and self-proclaimed meat man. During this Christmas season, he offers up some much-needed guidance on what to explore at your dinner table.

Selecting a roast depends more on the where of the cow, than the what.


hristmas is a time for family feasts with roast-laden tables, but far too often we have to give a stellar review for Aunty Sue’s dried out turkey roast. If you are Aunty Sue, or have her ear, here is my breakdown on what makes for a great Christmas Roast. We could all talk for days on our favourite elements of the perfect Christmas lunch, but for the sake of brevity I have chosen to leave out the hams, potatoes, and turkey in order to focus on the beef roast. Don’t be intimidated by the varying fancy names given to meat cuts by butchers. As a butcher myself, I can say that once we


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have broken it down, a lot of the extra name calling comes for the sake of convenience. As in “Oops, what was this piece again? Let’s call it a bladiblah and make it sound fancy.” The best cuts of meat are a language spoken by all and selecting a roast depends more on the where of the cow, than the what. When considering the cut of meat for a roast, try to select something close to the hoof or horns of the cow, as these areas contain the highest levels of collagen in all cuts. Think of collagen as the glue that holds muscles together, with a fillet containing the lowest amounts and roast cuts containing the most. When a cut with collagen is slow

cooked it will break down into gelatine and add beautiful juiciness and flavour to the roast. Butchers in Nairobi are getting better and better at selecting the different cuts according to their uses, so ask for a cut like a brisket, flank roll, or my personal favourite, the topside roast, which is cut from the cow’s upper leg. The next cut up from the topside roast is the rump, the first primal steak of the cow’s back end. Some places in Nairobi are now aging these cuts in order to enhance the flavour and increase the tenderness of that cut. As with everything, the right artisan makes all the difference, and as the consumer, you should guide the butcher to get you the specific cut you want. A good butcher will appreciate your input. Additionally, many of us are good cooks and can roll cheese and herbs into the roast for you, or even season the cut, leaving you with the simple task of cooking. Get the right cut, put it in the oven on a low temperature and then pour yourself a nice strong gin and tonic and enjoy the next 4-5 hours with your family in the sun. When dealing with oven temperature, somewhere below 200c but above 140c should be just right depending on the size of the cut. Add some beef spices and vegetables like carrot and onion around the cut that will evaporate their liquids and share flavours with the roast, leaving the cut flavourful and juicy. Ensure that the roast is covered with foil or in a good pot and you can check it every hour or so, making sure that there is still enough liquid to keep the cut tender and moist. If you are in the Gigiri side of town, visit my butchery called ‘The Local Grill’ in Village Market, where the cuts are aged and specially made to order.



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TheSWEET Christmas TOOTH In full celebration of the holiday season, blogger @Jmwai goes on a hunt for the best Christmas desserts Nairobi has to offer! J.mwai



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BBROOD STOLLEN BREAD AT VILLA ROSA KEMPINSKI At first glance, I thought that Stollen bread was just another luscious looking fruitcake. Boy, was I wrong! This is one of those unique loaves where pastry chefs roll up their sleeves and pour their souls into the dough. Stollen bread is a German festive season delicacy with incredible flavour and texture. The unique bread has this adorable denseness with rich yeast flavours, nuts, lightly sweet fruit, berry notes, spices and is generously coated with icing sugar. Stollen bread shares its origins with Villa Rosa Kempinski Group which was founded in the city of Berlin back in 1897. At their prestigious K Lounge and throughout the festive season, Villa Rosa Kempinski Nairobi is offering authentic Stollen bread; crafted from a rich, century-old recipe. GINGERBREAD HOUSE BY BBROOD Since about three Christmases back, the gingerbread house has become one of the subtleties that make my festive season complete. To me, a gingerbread house goes way beyond munching its crunchy goodness. Bbrood, celebrated for their high quality freshly baked bread have partnered with Greenspoon to offer a preassembled gingerbread house. Give it a try this festive season, and maybe you’ll join my bandwagon of gingerbread house


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enthusiasts. If you would be interested in assembling your own house, you can order a flat pack from Greenspoon that comes with panels, three bags of icing (red, white and green), decorative stars, and instructions on how to make the icing and put the gingerbread house together. Building the gingerbread house is a great fun activity for the whole family, especially for the kids. The gingerbread house goes for Kshs. 3,600. CHRISTMAS THEMED COOKIES BY MAMA ZAZA’S. Now that we are in the Christmas spirit, allow me to let you in on one of my little best-kept pastry secrets: Christmas sugar cookies from Mama Zaza’s! These holidaythemed cookies are one of my ultimate festive indulgences and also sit well in enhancing the festive look in my living space. Just like other Mama Zaza’s products, top quality ingredients are key. The Christmas decorated cookies are made using generous portions of Browns butter and pure vanilla extract to attain a soft buttery taste. The cookies are available in an assortment of falvours at One box at kshs 1,800 will include cookies shaped as angels, Christmas trees, snowmen, gingerbread men and stars. These beautifully packaged cookies can serve as the perfect Christmas gift for your loved ones! I know I’m definitely sending a few boxes to a couple of special people in my life. FESTIVE YULE LOG AT OPERA PATISSERIE SANKARA I love French pastries so when the swanky Opera Patisserie at Sankara Nairobi started dabbling in festive treats, my excitement touched the sky. Besides the fresh baked pastries, desserts and artisanal cakes, Opera is known for their themed cakes tailor-made for special occasions and this year they are making yule log cakes. I had the opportunity to sample the Barista yule log cake which is one among their four exciting flavours this festive season. The cake is made of chocolate biscuit, vanilla white chocolate mousse, coffee caramel crème brûlée and chocolate sable breton. I especially fell for the smooth texture inside, that complemented the rich choco covering. Other yule log flavours include; Fraisler, Chocolate Pineapple and the limited edition Chocolate Origin.



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Yummy. Food. Drink. Life




CHUCKLE OVER CHOCOLATE SALAMI Mother, entrepreneur and all round food lover Juliet Kennedy from @Greenspoon is driven by her quest to find the finest local artisan produce. This month, she experiments with quirky Christmas treats.


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ou’ll always know when Christmas is coming into our house. All kinds of whimsical, festive treats, start to emerge from the kitchen – and a gentle glow sets upon my skin from the heat of the oven, far from the cool, pristine domestic goddesses of the movies. Chocolate salami is one of those treats that causes me great amusement and it makes a brilliant and somewhat perplexing gift. When you initially say ‘chocolate salami’ more often than not, it results in a look of utter astonishment, turning quickly to disgust until you say ‘relax! It’s not some kind of kooky combination of pork and chocolate’ at which point there is a visible look of confusion: well what is it then?! This is what makes it terribly fun to give as a gift! Chocolate salami is a delicious and ridiculously simple indulgence to create. It’s very similar to chocolate fudge cake but in this version, we match a gloriously dark chocolate matched with traditional spicy Dutch Christmas cookies, and spiked (if you like) with some rum. I’ve turned to some slightly more tropical flavours and included some Sweetunda dried fruit which I think gives it a tang to break up the rich velvety chocolate. I’d recommend using any single origin chocolate from Absolute Chocolate so long as it’s 70% cocoa or more. I used a combination of Tanzanian, which has a hint of fruitiness about it, and Madagascan for the more coffee-like earthy flavours. I first came across Naheed Ahmed and Absolute Chocolate on Instagram (where else do you get discovered these days?!), when I saw a short video of his cocoa grinding machine. I tracked him down and we have many a long conversation about where the beans come from, how he makes his chocolate, and why Kenya is ready for an adventure in chocolate. If you think you’re not ready for your chocolate adventure, may I invite you to try Naheed’s single origin chocolate, and I can guarantee you will be sold!


• • • • • • • • • • •

250 grams Absolute dark chocolate (minimum 70% cocoa solids) roughly chopped 200 grams Bbrood Kruidmoppen Biscuits 100 grams Brown’s unsalted butter, softened 150 grams caster sugar 3 large eggs 2 tablespoons rum (optional) 2 tablespoons Epicurious Hedgehog cocoa powder 75 grams almonds or hazelnuts (unskinned), roughly chopped 75 grams Sweetunda mango or raspberry rolls (roughly chopped) 20 grams Kampi Kitchen dried orange crackers, rind removed, finely chopped 50 grams pistachios (roughly chopped) 2 tablespoons icing sugar (to decorate)


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In a heatproof bowl suspended over a saucepan of simmering water (but not touching the water), melt the chocolate until smooth. While the chocolate’s melting, put the Kruidmoppen biscuits into a large freezer bag, seal and bash them with a rolling pin until you have a bag of rubble – not dust. When the chocolate’s melted, remove it to a cold place (not the fridge) and set aside to cool. Cream the butter and sugar together until the mixture is soft and super light. Gradually, and one by one, beat in the eggs. (Don’t worry if the mixture looks curdled at this stage: once the chocolate is added later it will be fine.) Then beat in the rum. Push the cocoa powder through a little sieve into the cooled chocolate and, with a spatula, stir till combined, then beat this into the egg mixture, too. When you have a smooth chocolate mixture in front of you, tip in the chopped nuts, fruit and crushed biscuits. Fold these in firmly but patiently to make sure everything is chocolate covered. Transfer this mixture, still in its bowl, to the fridge to firm up a bit for 20–30 minutes. Don’t leave it for much longer than this or it will be difficult to get out of the bowl to shape. Unroll and slice off 2 large pieces of clingfilm, overlapping them, so that you have a large cling-covered surface to

roll the chocolate salami out on. Tip the chocolate mixture out in the middle of this and- mould the mixture into a fat salami-like log, approx. 30cm long. This is a messy job! 7. Cover the chocolate log completely with the clingfilm, and then firmly roll it, as if it were a rolling pin, to create a smooth, rounded cylinder from the rough log you started with. Twist the ends by grasping both ends of the clingfilm and rolling the sausage-log towards you several times. Then put it in the fridge for at least 6 hours – though preferably overnight – to set. 8. Once it’s set – tear off a large piece of greaseproof paper and lay it on a clean kitchen surface. Take the salami out of the fridge and set it on the paper. Measure out a piece of string at least 6 times longer than the length of the salami, and tie one end of the string firmly around the twisted knot of clingfilm at one end of the salami. Then trim away as much clingfilm as you can, but without cutting either of the tapered, nose ends, so that you can attach the string to these. 9. Dust your hands with a little icing sugar and then rub 2 tablespoons of icing sugar (more if needed) over the unwrapped salami to stop it getting sticky as you string it up. Plus it makes it look more like a salami! 10. Make a loop with the string, a little wider than the salami, and feed it over the end of the salami, close to where it is tied on. Pull on the trailing end to tighten (but not too tightly) and form another loop of string as before. Work this second loop around the sausage, 4cm or so further along from the first, tighten again and repeat until you reach the far end of the salami, then tie the string firmly around the other twisted nose of clingfilm. 11. With your remaining length of string, start to feed it back along the salami, twisting it around the encircling string each time it crosses a loop, then tie it again when you come to the end. Repeat these lengths as many times as you want, to make the authentic-looking pattern, but two or three times would be enough to get the effect. 12. Transfer it to a wooden board, and cut some slices, fanning them out as if they were indeed slices of salami, leaving a knife on the board, too, for people to cut further slices, as they wish. Serve fridge cold, or very near to it.

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o matter your beliefs, the festive season is about family time. It’s a time to reconnect with loved ones and get the larger family together as a whole. It’s also a delicate balance of summer parties and trying to look fresh the next day for family lunch… But that’s a discussion for another time.

Family Time

Food blogger Soni Adriance shares her top spots to take your family, even the embarrassing ones.

When you get the whole family together, there’s always going to be outliers. Everyone has the crazy aunt/uncle, the family member who’s now on a keto/vegan/trend diet or the family member who needs an extensive wine list because they’re now an aspiring sommelier. We know them, we all have them and we have to find a way to please everybody so here are some of my suggestions to navigate this chaos: CHOWPATY I hadn’t been back to Chowpaty in about 10 years until a special occasion brought me back a few weeks ago. I, as many Kenyans may be, was apprehensive about the vegetarian-only menu. Chowpaty exceeded my expectations, the food was delicious and the casual atmosphere makes for a great place to take your family for a laidback meal. What most may not know is that Chowpaty’s menu features Indian, Chinese and Italian (pizza) dishes. If you go, try out the crackling paneer from the Chinese menu. MEDITERRANEO Each Mediterraneo location has a unique feel and is best suited for different families plus, each location has a unique specials menu. Those with older kids, head to the 9West location and enjoy the modern dining room. The Junction and Gigiri locations are best suited for families with younger kids. The patio at Junction looks out onto the newly refurbished square while the Gigiri branch has lovely garden kids can play in. Order their Pizza Metro for a metre long pizza that you can customize with multiple toppings that everyone will enjoy. ASMARA At all Asmara locations, there is ample space for kids to run around and play as you wait for your food. Adventurous members of the group can try some delicious Eritrean food while those who are looking for something familiar can enjoy a pizza or salad. Asmara is a great spot to take a family with lots of young kids; the Westlands location has a big garden and the Karen location has a playground. TALISMAN


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TALISMAN From food to service, Talisman is one of the

TRIED & TASTED most consistent restaurants in Nairobi. This festive season, book your table in advance (especially for a large group) and request a table outside. With the idyllic weather, you can enjoy the beautiful outdoors and enjoy classic favourites like feta coriander samosas or the steak served with bhajias. Keep an eye on their social media pages as they’ll probably have a delicious festive specials menu.


HONOURABLE MENTIONS: ARTCAFFE Artcaffe is a staple for any occasion. With its multiple branches and extensive menu, you’re sure to find something for everyone. Check out the Westgate branch for a menu that’s slightly different from the other branches. FOR YOU For You is ideal for families with young kids. No matter what day of the week you go you’ll find kids playing in the backyard on the extensive playground at the branch opposite Valley Arcade. Plus, the food is affordable and who doesn’t like a quick and easy Chinese meal? PHOTO BY PETER IRUNGU



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Fret not, from the perfect celebration wines to cocktails you can make at home, we’ve got the know- how you need!


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EDMOND THERY L’OR BRUT This sparkling wine with an attractive gold bottle is made from 100% Chardonnay and comes from the Burgundy region. On the nose, it has aromas of vanilla and white flowers. On the palate, it is fresh and light, with flavours of flowers and white fruit. Lovely as an aperitif and perfect for your celebration’s toast!


LIFE SPARKLING ROSE MOSCATO 2015 This wine has a bright pink colour with pleasant aromas of strawberry, peach and flowering Jasmine. The crisp acidity is a perfect match for the fruity sweetness that lingers on the palate with the floral notes. It’s good for desserts and cheese.




GEORGES DUBOEUF DES QUATRE VENTS FLEURIE 2016 This 2016 Beaujolais is distinctively soft with notes of violets, red and black fruit on the nose. It also presents a gentle earthiness over time. The palate is medium bodied with crisp tannins. The oak ageing gently combines with the fruity notes creating a round silky finish. AVAILABLE FROM LE DECANTER ABC PLACE. PRICE 2500KSH


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DUCHESSA LIA CUVEE BRUT This spumante or Italian sparkling wine has a pale straw yellow colour with fine and persistent bubbles in the glass. It has delicate floral and white fruit notes with a hint of yeast. It is dry and well balanced on the palate and perfect as an aperitif. It also pairs well with shellfish.

QUINTA DOS MURÇAS 10 YEARS OLD TAWNY PORTO Port is always a good choice for the festive season. This port has a great amber colour with a great balance between wood ageing and fruity notes. It is fairly complex and persistent on the palate with nutty notes of hazelnut, figs and vanilla. It is fresh dry and of course ready to drink. AVAILABLE FROM UVA WINES. PRICE 5200KSH


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ASK A WINO I was given a bottle of expensive champagne and need to know how best to appreciate it!

BEAUJOLAIS? Why we should be drinking Beaujolais in 2019


hen people in Kenya think of Beaujolais, one of the first things that come to mind is how to pronounce it (Boo-zho-lay). So why has this wine gained such notoriety in the world of wine? Simple, its versatility for most wine drinkers. Beaujolais range from light, young and fresh Beaujolais Nouveau to the more expensive, complex Cru’s. It is a wine growing region located in the eastern part of France, not too far from the Swiss border. The majority of the wine produced here is red made from a thinskinned grape called Gamay. There are two styles of Beaujolais that people associate with, Beaujolais Nouveau and Beaujolais AOC. AOC basically meaning the regional appellation where the wine is made. If you ever walk into a wine shop or see a bottle of Beaujolais labelled Cru on the label it is the highest classification of wine from the region. Cru’s can range from bolder age-worthy wines to lighter bodied easier drinking wines. Beaujolais Nouveau, on the other hand, is one of those perfect summer drinking red wines. This is due to the fact that it is one of the wines that reaches shelves fastest from harvest (normally around 6 weeks). Beaujolais Nouveau wines are released every third Thursday in November each year at exactly one minute past midnight. Beaujolais nouveau started becoming popular in the 1970s due to its light, fresh and fruity style.


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The light fruity aspect of Beaujolais Nouveau is due to a fermentation process called carbonic maceration. Simply put, as opposed to the traditional method of fermentation where grapes are first crushed and the juice fermented on skin contact, carbonic maceration involves putting grapes in tanks then pumping in carbon dioxide. The result is the fermentation of juice occurs inside the grape creating a wine that is a light, fruity, low tannin wine that sometimes has aromas of bubblegum! Beaujolais cru, on the other hand, is a bit more sophisticated. Cru’s can only be produced in ten villages, with more traditional methods (no carbonic maceration) and therefore have better agility, up to 10 years. Still a light-bodied wine, it has elements associated more with old world wines with more smokey, earthy tones. NonCru Beaujolais is also light and fruit driven but is usually best consumed within 2 to 3 years of bottling. I have a fondness for this wine due to its versatility with food. Beaujolais is fairly high in acidity and light bodiedness. Due to this, it pairs well with roasted Christmas meats such as chicken, turkey and pork. Be sure to put this on your Christmas wine list especially if you manage to get your hands on a 2018 vintage. This vintage is considered one of the best vintages in 50 years!

What is the best way to drink that glass of bubbly that is so synonymous with celebration? Here is a quick go-to guide for making all those celebratory moments more special. It all starts with the glass. Technically speaking, a white wine glass is best as it allows you to capture the full aromas but on those special occasions nothing beats a Champagne flute. It allows the Champagne to stay bubbly for the longest time possible. Holding the flute by the stem allows the Champagne to stay chilled longer. The temperature of Champagne is something people get wrong. The best method is to take it out of its special storage area, preferably somewhere cool and dark. Place it in an ice bucket at least 30 minutes before serving. Nothing kills a party like a flying cork to someone’s head so be careful when opening a bottle of Champagne. To open, remove the foil and gently unscrew the cap while holding it down with your thumb. Using one hand to hold the cork and cage, gently rotate the bottle in the opposite direction using your other hand. This gives you more control, avoids the flying cork situation and gives you that unmistakable ‘pop’ sound. Finally, fill your glass a little until the fizz reduces then top it up, not more than one-third full. This will help keep your drink fizzy and cold for as long as possible letting you enjoy it just a little bit longer. Most of all, Champagne is a good way to start or end a celebration. So for that Christmas or New Year celebration, join me by toasting a glass with your special ones. In my opinion, if you’re looking for good quality and value go with Möet & Chandon. If you do want to splurge, Dom Pérignon is the way to go. KnifeWine



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Yummy. Food. Drink. Life


Yummy. Food. Drink. Life




If you’re not staying up too late and finding new spots to hang out during the holidays, then what is the point of drinkcember? Let us guide you through the streets of Nairobi and help pick your new favourite haunts so you can Lite the way with Tusker Lite!

FOR THE DANCERS (EVEN THE AWKWARD ONES) THE ALCHEMIST The melting pot of Nairobi where you can find all sorts of people and actually be okay with it! A large dance floor and epic stage make it a great spot to do those weird moves. With a wide group of DJ’s, live music and acts, you’re spoiled for choice.

KIZA LOUNGE Located off Argwings Kodhek Road at Galana Plaza, Kiza has become one of the most popular spots on the weekend when you’re looking to let loose with friends. With an impressive menu and space, Kiza has several theme nights to enjoy and various DJ’s to keep you moving all night long!


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LA MESA On the 15th floor of Mövenpick Hotel, La Mesa is a quaint two-level bar perfect for football lovers or chill drinkers. Enjoy a game of pool, Tusker Lite and a view of Westlands that will transport you to another place. The yellow lights of the city and the warmth of the bar will make this spot your new favourite. CAPTAINS TERRACE Overlooking the Nairobi National Park, you can enjoy the view and the drinks! This bar is on Mombasa Road and takes you away from the chaos on the roads. If you want to go for a road trip but don’t want to go far, this is the place to be!

DEJA VU Vineyard is now Deja Vu. You can expect the same good music and lots of dancing space.


TUSKER LITE BAR- IBIS A view and Tusker Lite sundowners are a norm here. Try the chicken wings when you go, thank us later.

THE YARD Located on Kiambu Road, The Yard is a secret spot for lovers of live music. Don’t expect fancy decor, go for the beer and stay for the music.

LISTEN TO IT LIVE GECO CAFE While you sip on a Tusker Lite, listen to soothing live music surrounded by books and a chilled out crowd looking for good music. Geco Cafe is one of those new places that is slowly becoming a local haunt and with it’s Friday live music sessions, we totally get it!

MAMA ROCKS You love their burgers, but have you tried their cocktails? These quirkily named cocktails are a great way to welcome in 2019 while devouring great food with it!

J’S It’s Thursday Nite Live at J’s! Listen to new and known local artists presented by Roots International. With a huge space and casual seating, J’s is the new live music spot that makes your Thursday a lot more entertaining than before! PHOTO BY PETER IRUNGU

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NEW YEARS AROUND THE WORLD Time zones are not the only thing that differentiates New Year’s Eve celebrations throughout the world, culture has an important part to play as well. Thankfully, Nairobi is a big melting point for different cultures. In this issue, our drinks enthusiast Kahiu shares with you some of the different drinking traditions from around the world.


ill Vaughn once said, “An optimist stays up until midnight to see the New Year in. A pessimist stays up to make sure the old year leaves.” Whether you are the former or latter, many of us have some sort of tradition to help usher in the New Year. Let us begin the list with Japan, a country well known for its fondness for sake (rice wine). For their New Year celebrations, they create a special spiced sake called otoso. This herbal infused sake is shared amongst the family members in three special cups; shared from the youngest member of the family to the eldest member. This tradition is a way of sharing life force and the elders drink last as a form of absorbing vitality from their younger descendants. From Japan, we move to China where New Year’s is celebrated by playing drinking games - especially with dice. This form of liar’s dice is played on both the traditional Chinese new year but has also become a part of the conventional new year celebrations. For those of you who do


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not know this game, it is simple. Players start a round by shaking dice in a cup and slamming them down on a table covering the dice. Each player then calls out what they have underneath the cup such as ‘two fours’ and the rest of the players can either call them out as a liar or accept the call. No points are awarded but if the accuser is right, the dice holder drinks and if the dice holder is telling the truth the accuser drinks. This game gets harder as it continues as each subsequent player must have a higher count than the previous person playing - i.e. ‘three three’s’ must be followed by ‘three fours’ or ‘three fives’ or ‘five ones’. It also gets harder the more baijiu (Chinese liquor) you drink! Russia have an interesting tradition which involves their wishes! While many cultures in the world believe in writing down wishes and burning them to make them come true, Russia, they take this a step further. They put the ashes of their burnt wishes into a glass of Champagne and drink it on the stroke of midnight. Its safe to say the road to good

fortune in this part of the world starts with a different taste. In Spain however, the road to good fortune starts with gold. The Spanish kick off the New Year with a glass of cava with something gold in it such as a ring or a coin. For your good fortune to come true, you must drink the whole glass of cava after midnight and retrieve the item. Try not to swallow it, you might just have an unlucky start to the year. In Scotland, Hogmanay or New Year is celebrated in a fashion I quite adore. The first person (first footer) who steps through the door after midnight brings good fortune to the house with a gift - Whisky! As a general rule of thumb however, bring a bottle of whisky to a Scottish New Year’s party to avoid embarrassment. There are countless other New Year’s traditions around the world that you can try out but tradition or not, it is all about the beautiful moments and the treasured memories if you ask me. Wishing you, your friends and family an adventurous one!


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It’sSEASON! Cocktail ‘Tis the season to be merry and perhaps overindulge a little in cocktails! To help you improve your skills and maybe wow your guests, Dougie Duncanson, senior brand ambassador at Diageo East Africa, gives us 6 holiday cocktail recipes guaranteed to make the holidays brighter!

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Zacapa Spiced Apple Crumble INGREDIENTS • • • • •

35ml Zacapa Rum 110ml apple juice 10ml ginger ale 1 cinnamon stick 1 apple for the garnish

DIRECTIONS 1. Fill the glass with ice and pour over Zacapa Rum. 2. Top up with apple juice and ginger ale. 3. Slice apple and place on top of the drink and grate cinnamon over the top.

Bulleit Yule Tide Flip INGREDIENTS • • • • •

60ml Bulleit Bourbon 4 dashes of bitters 15ml sherry 15ml of Benedictine 1 egg

DIRECTIONS 1. Put all ingredients into a shaker with ice and shake hard for 30 seconds. 2. Strain into a wine glass. 3. Garnish with grated nutmeg.


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Auld Lang Syne INGREDIENTS • • • • • • •

45ml Johnnie Walker Black Label 15ml Green apple liqueur 30ml Lemon juice 10ml Sugar syrup 30ml Champagne 1 dash Peychaud’s bitters Lemon thyme tincture in a spray bottle.

DIRECTIONS 1. In a tin shake the Johnnie Walker Black Label, apple liqueur, lemon juice, sugar and bitters. 2. Spray a chilled coupe glass with lemon thyme tincture and add champagne to the glass. 3. Double strain the rest into the glass. 4. Garnish with fresh lemon thyme pegged to the rim of the glass.

The Mulled Margarita INGREDIENTS • • • • •

60ml Don Julio Blanco tequila 60ml Merlot 20ml mulled spice syrup 10ml freshly squeezed lemon juice 1 orange for the twist

DIRECTIONS 1. Place the Don Julio, Merlot, spice syrup lemon juice in a shaker. 2. Shake hard with ice. 3. Strain into glass over fresh ice and serve with an orange twist.

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The Champagne Cosmo INGREDIENTS • • • • •

35ml Cîroc vodka 45ml cranberry juice 35ml Champagne 10ml fresh lime juice (around half a lime) 1 orange for the twist

DIRECTIONS 1. Shake over ice with the vodka, cranberry and lime juice. 2. Strain into and champagne glass. 3. Top up with champagne and garnish with an orange twist.

Ketel One Blushing Dragon INGREDIENTS • • • • • • • •

60ml Ketel one Handful of blueberries Handful of raspberries Handful of strawberries 30ml triple sec 15ml sugar syrup 15ml lemon juice Crushed ice

DIRECTIONS 1. Place all in blender and blend. 2. Pour into glass and enjoy!.


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THE SECOND COMING This holiday season, Jackson Biko learns that no one is immune to the December craze and sometimes, that little person on your left shoulder should not be listened to.


y pal, Ken, is back from the US. He comes in secretly as most of the summer bunnies come into the country, with the 1am flight. When the sun comes up they are here, jetlagged and calling you at 6am. “Why don’t we do drinks later today? He asks. “I don’t drink today,” I say piously. “ Why the f*** not?” (Can you tell he’s from the US?). “Because it’s Monday,” I say. “I don’t drink on Mondays.” “Oh for f***ssake.” That evening one of our friends calls me around 7:20 pm. I was doing nothing. Actually, I was thinking of where I can get a Bonsai. (If you know anyone selling one, please email me on I could hear a hubbub in the background; music, people laughing and making merry, clinking glasses, basically how it sounds right before the Second Coming. (It will happen on a Monday) This particular friend who was calling is the type who starts all conversations with “Ala.” He says, “Ala, Ken says you don’t drink on a Monday?” “That’s right,” I say pompously like I’m more responsible than him and Ken. Then I add,


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“But you already know that, Chris.” “Even on Christmas holidays?” He asks. I can hear someone in the background ask him a question to which he answers out of earshot “yeah, it’s him - Sabbath boy.” Girls laugh, either at that statement or at something else in the bar. “I’m not a Sabbath boy,” I say. “Who is there, anyway?” I ask casually, like I don’t care. He mentions the names of guys who are there, most who I haven’t seen in ages. He mentions a name of someone who I had thought was born again. It’s a full house. The little person standing on my left shoulder says, “Wear your shoes, the hell with the stupid Monday rule. Come have a drink.” The little person on my right shoulder says, “If you don’t stand for anything, you will fall for everything.” So I decide to stand for something and wear my shoes. At the bar, Ken is seated amongst a knot of other guys, some I don’t know. We embrace. He smells of lavender. He says shoving me playfully, “So you still have to be seduced as a girl to come out.” I tell him, “You have grown fat.” One of our friends says, “I told you so!” There are two or three more summer bunnies in the crowd. They all have

sneakers. One is in shorts, like a tourist. They are talking about Summer Bunny things and drinking the official summer bunny drink; Tusker. They are also talking about Trump and asking whatever happened to that chick who used to make and sell that gothic jewellery. And what happened to that car yard along Ngong Road? And why do you guys still allow these politicians to play around with you? More beers come to the table. More people come to the table. It gets louder. I go to the washrooms and hear someone say in the phone, as he pees on the urinal; “Come on, you can’t tell me it takes you thirty minutes to pick a dress!” Back at the table, I find someone seated on my chair; a lady with some sort of a badass hairstyle. The type that can dance to dancehall music. She says, “Oh, I’m sorry, did I take your seat?” Ken tells her, “It’s okay, he doesn’t mind standing.” So I stand the whole time drinking and listening to summer bunnies talk about stuff that I can’t relate to. When I can’t stand standing anymore, I pay my bill and that one friend says, “Ala, kwani you are leaving already?” The little person on my right shoulder says, “See what happens when you don’t stand for anything?”


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Sabah Jabeen is a photographer and owner of a catering company in Mombasa. Her family runs Milios restaurant in Kizingo. Here are her top spots to check out this holiday season!

NAMASKAR Derived from the Hindi word for salutation, this restaurant ushers the residents and diners visiting the Bliss Resort in Mombasa. The chic setup more than elevates the Indian culinary delights featured in the menu. For a lucky few, a tour of the kitchen to marvel over the love injected into the meal making process shall definitely solidify the awe of this venue. A platter not to miss is the hara bhara kebab as a mouth melting starter, moorgh (chicken) tikka for the entrée served with veggie pickles and naan as an accompaniment, with a rich salty lassi for your drink. The operating times are 10:30 am till 11:30 pm throughout the week. FORODHANI SEAFRONT RESTAURANT This old port-located Mombasa gem sits at the heart of the Old Town a stone throw, or two, away from Fort Jesus. Best accessed by tuk-tuks, this picturesque venue sits across the puddle from English Point. The management and staff are well informed and friendly plus the halal menu offers an array of dishes whether Indian, Continental or Swahili. The lure of all foods is the special prawns ala forodhani best washed down by a refreshing glass of fresh tamarind juice. Open on all days of the week from 10am to 11pm. 10TH STREET A 24/7 fast food joint that doesn’t disappoint. The members of staff are fresh as daisies and cordial whatever time of day it is.

Their continental menu features a range of delights, including and not limited to, the chicken schnitzel burger, traditional hamburgers, falafels ...the list is endless. Their desserts and shakes are to die for, not to mention it’s the only place in Mombasa I know of that offers churros. The handcrafted wood furniture is unique and mesmerising, giving a homey feel for those who opt to lounge and down drinks coupled with the option of streaming live games. Sat right behind City Mall in Nyali, it is definitely worth a try! Open 24 hours with round-the-clock delivery MILIO’S PIZZERIA I would obviously have to mention Milio’s! A family run eatery that has a traditional brick wood-fired oven and authentic Italian thin crust pizzas, plus the custom toppings and marinations are from freshly obtained ingredients. Obscured away in Kizingo, the pizzeria is best accessed by private transport which means that Google is your friend. Other than the conventional pizza toppings, Milio’s offers options such as something beefy, something kuku, and veg options for their pizzas. Personal favourites would be the recent additions ‘big fat Greek pizza’ and the ‘special garlic prawns pizza’. Dine-ins enjoy the cool shaded seating offered whilst deliveries are free (and prompt) within Kizingo. Operating times are between 12-2:30 pm and 5-9:30 pm.

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Christmas with a view at The Attic Rooftop with delicacies such as shawarmas and festive platters. Enjoy classic carols and more. Kshs. 3,500 per person.


Explore festive buffet meals at Kshs. 4,000 for adults and Kshs. 2,500 for children between Christmas Eve and New Years with free swimming for the whole family and a live band.


Combine a selection of starters, mains and desserts for Kshs. 2,500.

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Enjoy 5 different festive meals at Tamambo Karen.Kshs. 3,950 for adults and Kshs. 1,900 for children.


Enjoy buffets from Christmas Day and into the new year.Starting at Kshs. 3,250.


Get 3 cocktails for the price of 2 as you watch the sunset between 5pm and 7pm. Starting at Kshs. 800



Make all your festive memories here starting at Kshs. 2,800 per person.


Buy a pizza of any size and get one free every day or buy a fried chicken combo and get a free soda


Christmas brunch for Kshs. 2,500 if you’re a teetotaler and Kshs. 3,900 if you’re indulging in a cocktail or three.


Offering a seasonal menu featuring a Christmas Eve brunch at Kshs. 2,999 and a Christmas Day brunch at Kshs. 2,700.


Enjoy Coffee Casa’s 12 Days of Christmas with offers like buy one get one free milkshake, burger free Fridays and more. Get these and more offers starting from Kshs. 400.


If you’re trying to keep your Christmas hustle-free and relaxed then The Grove is where you want to be. Call 0204071000 to make your reservation.




The holidays are here and you’re probably ready to put your feet up as you sip your favourite drink. No morning alarms, no 2-hour commute and no deadlines. It’s basically Sunday every day so the last thing you want to do is stand in the kitchen for hours on end cooking or order the same old thing from your regular restaurant. We’ve put together some great meals from some of our favourite restaurants that you can order using UberEats and have the meals delivered to your front door with no lines or hustle.


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MAMBO ITALIA - LAVINGTON/RIVAAN CENTRE There’s something for everyone at Mambo Italia, even the picky eaters. Order sandwiches as a light meal or go big and get their pizzas ranging from chicken in hot buffalo sauce to slow braised pork shoulder in barbeque sauce. Add on vegetable lasagna, butternut ravioli or spaghetti bolognese if you’re a pasta lover or get a generous portion of their chicken milanese, fillet steak or BBQ pork ribs. Try out their variety of desserts which include gelato, chocolate chip cookies and their orange and almond flourless cake. DONUTS WORLD - MPAKA ROAD They offer more than just donuts but that should not stop you from ordering some. Skip the salads and go straight to the mains with delicious chicken shawarma sandwich, deep fried chicken wings dipped in sweet chilli sauce, chicken mandi with Yemeni soup, grilled beef burger and their popular mixed grill seafood platter. Spoil yourself by adding on some of their delectable orange, crumb, vanilla, cherry or chocolate donuts just to name a few. CONNECT COFFEE - CHIROMO Too lazy to make a coffee run? Connect Coffee’s blends of Romeo and Juliet can come to you instead. Order your favourite panini and pair it with an ice cold glass of orange and grapefruit juice. Get everyone a fresh wrap and a creamy blueberry yoghurt milkshake. Wind down after your meals with a hot vanilla latte, caramel macchiato or a classic Americano. COCO JAMBO - VALLEY ARCADE It’s not the festive season in Kenya without red meat and Coco Jambo can cook it three classic Kenyan ways for you. Keep it simple with a beef, goat or pork wet fry, dry fry or choma and add-on mutura on the side. If red meat is too heavy for you, they offer kienyeji and broiler chicken cooked to tender perfection. THE TAVERN AT KING POST - RHAPTA ROAD The Tavern has got your breakfast covered. They offer a variety of breakfast bowls with an oatmeal and milk base then topped with fruits, peanut butter, chia seeds, yoghurt, toasted almonds or honey. If you want something more filling you can try their breakfast burritos or sandwiches. Trying to keep it simple? They provide classic breakfast options like pancakes or waffles and eggs and Indian breakfast treats as well.

SWAHILI PLATE - SARIT CENTRE If you aren’t able to make it out of Nairobi this festive season then Swahili plate can bring those fragrant spicy Coastal flavours to your home. Order in beef pilau, mahamri mbaazi, boneless chicken fry, gizzard with chapati, samaki wa kupaka and many more dishes. Their menu is endless and there will be smiles all around when you’re done. Pour a cup of chai and enjoy fresh, warm kaimati, vitumbua and mkate wa mayai as you bask in the December sun.

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Yummy 48: Holiday Bliss