Food, eating habits and cusine of Botswana

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There are some restaurants and bars in the main towns, often located within hotels. The usually variety of cuisines—European, Chinese, and Indian—is commonly available. Local beer and palm wine are popular and there are no real restrictions on alcohol.

Food is generally basic outside major hotels and restaurants. Besides beef, which is plentiful and of good quality, lamb, mutton and chicken and other meats are popular. River fish is also available. Sorghum and maize are the main crops grown here but wheat, rice and other kinds of cereals are imported. Most common vegetables are grown as well but they are seasonal so they are often dried or salted for later use. Local fruits include water melons and another type of melon, called lerotse or lekatane, as well as wild melons, which are important sources of food and water for people in the desert.

Popular Setswana food includes Seswaa or Chotlho, a popular traditional meat dish cooked by men in a three-legged iron pot; and Serobe, the intestines and other inner parts of goat, sheep or cow cooked until soft. Other national delicacies include Morama (an underground tuber), the Kalahari truffle, the Mopane worm (boiled, cooked or deep-fried), beans such as cow peas, ditloo and letlhodi, dried bean leaves, nuts like peanuts and groundnuts, and wild spinach.

Porridge made of sorghum, maize or millet flour is commonly eaten. Although bread is not part of the basic diet, over time, different recipes have been incorporated such as dumplings (matemekwane), flat cakes (diphaphatha) and fat cakes (magwinya).

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