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Street Food Friday: What Big Game Meats Can You Eat in Kenya?

Where: Kenya
May 9, 2014 at 9:33 AM | by | Comments (0)

Despite a past where everything and anything was up for grabs, not many game meats are still available to eat legally in Kenya. Considered "protected game," it is illegal to eat a majority of the exotic animals these days, including lion, leopard, rhino, elephant, buffalo, giraffe, zebra, impala, wildebeest, warthog, and elands, among others.

The Kenyan government banned sport hunting in 1977, but allowed limited hunting to cull animals and harvest game meat until 2003 when it was shut down completely because of the on-going poaching problem. In other words, it's become a numbers game in Africa.

So, if you're looking for some culinary adventures while in Kenya, you might not get as far as you once could (which, to be fair, is the right decision in this writer's opinion). But there's still some game meat to be had if you poke around. Here's a rundown of the most typical served throughout the country:

Ostrich

Humans seem to do all right when it comes to eating birds, so it isn't exactly a surprise to see that Ostrich is still on the list of game meats available to the public in Kenya. It's actually pretty good for you, too, low in cholesterol and fat but high in protein. Look for it in burger, steak, or fried formats at a restaurant like Carnivore.

Crocodile

We're not sure an animal could look less appealing as far as the eye test goes, but crocodile meat is actually pretty tasty, very similar to a mild white fish in its texture and unseasoned flavor. It is typically fried and served with a sweet or creamy dipping sauce.

Ox Oysters

If you've ever had Rocky Mountain Oysters, you know that using the term "oyster" to describe this body part is simply common courtesy. Expect a pate/foie gras type of texture, and be prepared to indulge more for the story than for the taste.

Goat

Goat is one of the most widely eaten meats in the world, and for good reason. It is low in fat, high in protein, and relatively easy to raise. While it can be served roasted in a dish called Nyama Choma (Swahili for "roasted meat"), it is often prepared as a stew. It is one of the main sources of protein for many African tribes, including Kenya's Maasai people.

[Photos: Wired/Themost10/WVP Kenya/Earth Zine]

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