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Interview with Edward Mukiibi- Slow Food International Vice-President Ugandan Agronomist – 12.10.15

Edward Mukiibi was born and raised in the rural parts of Mukono District in Central Uganda. He attended a nearby rural school for his primary and secondary education. Agriculture was used as a form of punishment in both schools: experiencing firsthand the practice of shaping a young person’s attitude towards agriculture. Mukiibi graduated from Makerere University with honors in Agricultural Land Use Management in 2009, where he has also worked as a teaching assistant in the Soil Science Department. In 2006, Mukiibi founded Developing Innovations in School and Community Gardens (DISC), a project aimed at promoting community engagement and agricultural sustainability among the youth. Mukiibi’s involvement with Slow Food began in 2008. It was stimulated by a drought in Uganda whose destabilizing impacts were made far worse by the widespread mono-crop planting of a maize hybrid. By contrast, he argues, traditional agricultural practices provide stability: “If one takes a classic African farm, one finds there are fruit trees, vegetables…it’s thanks to this model that, over the years, Uganda has never known famine.” In 2014, at the age of 28, he was named Vice President of Slow Food International. With this recent appointment, Mukiibi helps to steer the work of the global network and to grow Slow Food’s 10,000 Gardens in Africa project.

 

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Sweet Potato Latkes
½ cup Besan (chick pea flour) or other gluten free flour
¼ t. baking soda
5 Tbs cold water
1 small onion, cut into slivers
1 potato, grated and water squeezed out
1 sweet potato, grated
1 carrot, grated
1 t. salt
1 t. chopped parsley (optional)
Oil for frying
In large bowl, make a batter with the chick pea flour, baking soda and water. Then add the rest of the ingredients. Drop by spoonfuls into deep fryer or skillet with hot oil. When brown, remove and drain. (I usually try one first, to adjust salt to taste.)
This recipe also does well with baking.
To Bake:
Preheat oven to 450*
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Spray with oil. Drop spoonfuls of potato mixture onto baking sheet, 2” inches apart. Bake at 450° for 10 minutes. Turn over and bake for 5 more minutes or until golden brown.

Potato Latkes

1 cup unbleached white flour

4 organic onions, cut into slivers

12 organic potatoes, grated and water squeezed out

4 organic eggs

1 Tbs. salt

Oil for frying

In large bowl, make a batter with the eggs, flour and salt. Then add the onions and potatoes. Mix thoroughly. Drop by spoonfuls into deep fryer or skillet with hot oil. Do not form into patties. Let them be free formed, with slivers of potatoes and onions sticking out. When brown and crisp, remove from oil and drain on paper towel. Serve with apple sauce or organic sour cream.

*I usually make one first, and taste it, to decide if it needs more salt.