Experience Fulani Cuisine - Chef Binta's Dine on Mat Popup Restaurant – ADJOAA
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Inside A Fulani Kitchen

Chef Binta is a nomad. Born and raised in Sierra Leone by Fulani parents, her love of Fulani cuisine was nurtured by the time spent in her grandmother’s village in Conakry- Guinea.

Inside A Fulani KitchenIncidentally, the later harsh realities of wartime cooking led to unexpected improvisations of traditional Fulani fare and birthed her love of fusion. Attending culinary school in Kenya years later not only honed her skills, but further confronted her fiery West African palate with the more subdued East African tones.

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Now based in Ghana, she preserves and promotes Fulani cuisine and culture through her Dine on a Mat nomadic popup restaurant.

“I decided to go on the road and try to understand the difference between, for example, a Ghanaian Fulani community compared to a Guinean fulani one.

With the Fulanis being the largest ethnic group on the African continent, made up of as many as 40 million people according to some sources, Binta certainly has no shortage of choice. She relishes in the varying influences she encounters, and fuses them with the fundamental Fulani staples she grew up with. 

Inside A Fulani Kitchen     

And so her Dine on a Mat menu offerings are conceived: from suya guacamole and honey glazed waagashi to Masa rice cakes and gari crumble. Guests are treated to an immersive dining experience where the food is accompanied by stories of the culture behind it, and where the menu concludes with a refreshing tea ceremony:

“We get people to sit on the mat, then eat with their hands and just learn the whole story about the Fulani people.”

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Binta’s pop-ups have featured in the Ghanaian capital of Accra, as well as a little further up north in the majestic Aburi mountains. But Dine on a Mat has also taken place in New York City and traveled all the way to the German city of Berlin.

Ultimately, Binta is translating what it means to be nomadic into a delectable dining experience:

“To be a chef today is to centre yourself in the traditions of your roots and use them to define your art and speak to any human being about who you are. Your plate is your flag” 

Inside A Fulani Kitchen                           

Her culinary skill is not the only best thing about her, Binta believes in impact. She is the founder of Fulani Kitchen Foundation, a women farming platform that partners with women farmers in Ghana’s Northern regions to promote their produce and improve their livelihoods.

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It is therefore no surprise that she received the Basque Culinary World Prize in 2022, a prestigious international culinary award for chefs advancing society through gastronomy.

A year earlier (2021), she was awarded Rising Star Winner by the renowned Best Chef Awards. Binta has been featured in Vogue Italia, BBC, The Guardian and named as one of 100 influential people in Africa by New Africa Magazine.

Inside A Fulani KitchenCurrently, she is busy working with the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations to promote the International year of Millets, 2023. 

The FAO and Chef Binta are calling all Chefs to participate in the #IYM chef challenge. Find out more information on how to participate here

All images are courtesy of Chef Binta. 
About writer: 
Lucia Nhamo is the Creative Director of “Cities on a Plate,” a sumptuous virtual discussion series that curates culinary explorations of different cities, relishing in the intersections of food, culture and society.

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