Swahili Recipes with My Swahili Kitchen

Learn how to make traditional Swahili cuisine with Nazma M. Ali, caterer and owner of My Swahili Kitchen! The menu includes:

  • Mikate ya Mofa: bread made with wheat and maize flour, coconut milk, garlic and onions
  • Samaki wa Nazi: tilapia in a coconut curry sauce 
  • Pilipili: mild/hot sauce with jalapeno, cilantro, onions, garlic and lemon


About Nazma and My Swahili Kitchen

"I am a native Swahili woman from the island of Lamu, Kenya. Recent graduate of the U of I School of Information Science & Center for African Studies. In my culture we cook all three meals daily from scratch with fresh and organic ingredients that we harvest from our farms. I come from a family that is big on cooking amazing Swahili dishes and cater for big events such as weddings, government events, funerals, etc. Since moving to the states, I have always liked getting together with friends and preparing some home cooked Swahili food for them. In 2018, My Swahili Kitchen was born and from the beginning we have been known for our specialties such as the irresistible scrumptious, crunchy and flavorful sambusas (samosas) of many kinds along with many varieties of hot sauces all from family recipes. We are the first Swahili food small business in C-U area and have been known for our specialty in sambusa ever since."



1 handful
Garlic cloves
Red onion
To taste
Lemon or lime juice
1 tablespoon
Mikate y Mofa
All-purpose flour
2 cups
Maize flour
1/4 cup
Coconut milk
3/4 cup
1 tablespoon
1 teaspoon
To taste
Garlic, chopped
1 tablespoon
Red onion, chopped
1 tablespoon
Baking powder
1 teaspoon
3/4 cup
Samaki wa Nazi
10 ounces
Red onion, diced
Garlic cloves, minced
Bell pepper, sliced
Juice of lime
Crushed or diced tomatoes
28 ounce can
Coconut milk
15 ounce can
Ground cumin
2 tablespoons
Curry powder
1/2 teaspoon
Black pepper
3 tablespoons
Garlic salt
2 tablespoons
Cooking oil
1/2 cup


  1. Blend all of the ingredients together and serve as is.

Mikate ya Mofa

  1. Add the all-purpose flour, maize flour, yeast, sugar, salt, baking powder, garlic, and onion to a large bowl. Mix together with your hands or a mixer.
  2. Add the water and coconut milk
  3. Once it is all mixed together, let it rest for about 30 minutes to double in size.
  4. When it's proofed, heat a pan on the stove and add a little bit of oil. Add the dough to the pan.
  5. Check the bread in the pan every minute and turn it around while adding a little bit of oil. Cover it for a couple of minutes until both sides are golden brown.
  6. Transfer to a serving dish.

Samaki wa Nazi

  1. Coat the tilapia with a little bit of black pepper, lime juice, garlic salt, and cumin.
  2. Heat a bit of oil in a pan and sear the tilapia until it is a bit crispy and hard.
  3. In a large pot, heat a bit of cooking oil. Add onions, garlic, and curry powder and saute. Add the sliced bell peppers and the can of tomatoes. Let simmer until softened.
  4. Add garlic salt and coconut milk. Cover for a minute, then add the sauteed tilapia and mix together and serve.