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Omugoyo, the Combination of Sweet Potatoes and Beans

Tuesday, June 11th, 2019

When it comes to meal time, everyone is looking for a place to quench their thirst and fill their stomachs. Different people pop in for preferred dishes among which is ”omugoyo”.

Omugoyo is a local dish prepared among the central regions of Uganda. The word omugoyo literally mean something mingled up. This dish is a combination of sweet potatoes and beans mingled together.

In Kenya,this similar dish is prepared a lot thou for its case there is an added ingredient that is corn and it is referred to as ”mushenye.” Most people who feed on mushenye have overtime credited its satisfying degree and that it lasts longer in the digestion process meaning one feels satisfied for some good hours.

This credit is no exception for ”omugoyo.” Without holding a debate, we can at least agree that this is one of the easiest dishes to make and requires utmost four ingredients. besides its simplicity, omugoyo is all natural and healthy with nothing like fatty oils and spices making it fit for all persons, young and old.

The required ingredient are sweet potatoes, beans, salt and water.
Uganda being an agricultural based country, most of these crops are widely grown. For your benefit, let me take you through how these two amazing crops are grown.

let me tackle the sweet potatoes first. One needs to know that sweet potatoes are root tubers which are propagated by use of stems. Soil mounds are prepared and then stems of the already grown potato plants are cut off and planted along the mound. When the stems start developing, weeding is done once or twice depending on the rate of growth of weeds. Four months down the road, the sweet potatoes are fully grown and can be uprooted for consumption.

Uprooting can be done by hand or by hoe depending on the hardness of the soil. this should be done carefully so that the tubers are not damaged.

For the case of beans, after the land is well prepared for planting, bean seeds are planted either in rows or broadcasting method depending on the breadth of the field. The seeds will germinate three to four days after planting. four weeks later, weeding can be done since the seedlings have now developed into stronger plants. Three months are enough for the bean plants to give yield. The bean pods are plucked off either fresh or dry depending on the preference of the harvester.

The bean seeds can be stored for over a year unlike the sweet potatoes which are kept for relatively a short time.

If this is a whole new experience for you, take heart, relax, the preparation is well set for you here. First of all, you will have a preferred number of sweet potatoes peeled and sliced into a saucepan; water is then added at least half way the volume of the potatoes. Heating follows till the water has dried out and the potatoes have acquired a semi gold color and are soft enough.

The beans on the other hand are also boiled normally to a desired softness. when they are ready, salt is added so it dissolves completely. Both sweet potatoes and beans are left to cool then the beans[with little or no soup] are mixed with the sweet potatoes in one saucepan. this is not the end, but at least its close to the climax. so you can at least hold on for some minutes before you start to salivate.

The next move is to grab your mingling stick or potato smasher and start to mash the mixture to complete softness. This may require some energy depending on the volume of the mixture.

Having it all said and done, you can now finally check out for your best plate and fork, get the omugoyo served and then enjoy the fruit of your 3 hour investment.

Omugoyo can be served as a side dish[ mind not what is trending on social media today], and also a main dish. Different types of stew can accompany omugoyo such as goat stew, beef or even vegetables, considering ones taste.

Leaving alone the issue of having a delicious and satisfying meal, omugoyo is a dish that will give you many food nutrients that are required for your good health. The amazing nutrients found in sweet potatoes include vitamin A[in form of beta-carotene], vitamin C, manganese,copper, potassium, dietary fiber, phosphorous, vitamin B1, B2 and B6. Beans are a rich source of proteins, carbohydrates and ,many minerals. So you can imagine how beneficial the combination of these two is.

One more amazing fact is that omugoyo is a healthy diet for childhood nutrition. However, if it is for a child below two years, it must be done carefully, the smashing must be thorough and a little soup should be added for a child’s digestive system to work on it comfortably.

Before i log out from this, did you know that some people prefer omugoyo as a tea accompaniment? Here i am talking about African tea; you can have your omugoyo kept through the night so that you slice it out for breakfast, this will give you a stunning image of your day ahead; full of energy and rich satisfaction.

Which better way can bring out this whole experience apart from getting your apron and hitting the kitchen?

By Kabagambe Gerald.