Oshiwambo Cuisine, Namibia – Part 1 :How to Cook Oshithima and Ombidi

Tradition lives because young people come along who catch its romance and add new glories to it.     

Michael Novak
Claudia Diana I N

By the title of this blog post I bet your thinking Mhhm “she is an Oshiwambo speaking girl”. Yes I am! A proud Kwambi for that matter or is it Kwanyama? Eish I get confused sometimes😂

So today I woke up craving to cook (yes I can cook) a few of my traditional dishes and I thought to myself “ha! why not write about it”, you know? Because I really love cooking and enjoy eating our traditional food especially the porridge, which is rather known as “oshithima” or “oshimbombo”. This type of porridge is from the mahangu grains which are pounded in large mortals with long wooden pestles, cooked into a stiff porridge.

Mahangu plant

So without further or do let’s get to it…

Ingredients for Oshithima

~ You will need ~

1. Hot boiling water and tap water.

2. Mahangu Flour

3. Maize Meal Flour “Top Score”

Step 1

So what you wanna do first is boil water in a kettle. As the water boils make sure all ingredients are within your reach. Then you get your pot, pour in a fair amount of tap water and add a cup full of Top score flour or more depending on how big you want your “Oshithima” to be.

Step 2

Start to stir while placing your pot on the stove on maximum heat and add the hot boiling water. Continue stirring till the mixture becomes a bit thick and starts to boil. As it boils, reduce the heat so it doesn’t jump onto your skin cause it hurts.

Step 3

Place a lid on the pot as it boils with low heat and let it boil for about 15minutes. After it boils really well add the mahangu flour till it becomes stiff and a bit grey.

Step 4

Keep stirring and leave it for a while to cook after you’ve  seen that its ready, remove it from the pot and serve it onto a plate. NB: Cover it cause it’s at its best when it’s served hot.


When it comes to cooking the traditional spinach; “Ombidi” or “Ekaka”, I love playing around with what I have and I work with it.

Ingredients for Ombidi

~You will need~

1. Water

2. Ombidi/ ekaka

3. Elumelinika (if you have it)

4. Salt

5. Oil

6. Garlic

7. Barbeque spice

8. Medium Curry Powder

9. Sweet chilli

10. Ondjove (For the topping)

11. Chopped Onion

12. 2 Crushed Chilli grains

Step 1

What you wanna do first is soak the “ombidi” in a bowl of water for about 10 minutes then drain the water. Get your pot, pour in a little amount of water and place it on the stove on maximum heat.

Step 2

Add the elumelinika, enough salt, oil and garlic to the pot. Let it boil and cook for about 15 – 20minutes.

Step 3

After it has boiled and if there is no water, add water. Stir the pot and add barbeque spice, medium curry powder, sweet chilli, chilli grains and the chopped onions. Continue stirring and once everything is well mixed cover the pot and let it cook for a few more minutes.

Step 4

It’s almost done. All you have to do is taste and see whether it needs something like let’s say salt for example and then try adding whatever that you feel is missing and let it simmer for about 5 minutes.

Step 5

After all that, you can remove your pot from the stove and serve it hot on a plate and just drizzle some ondjove to give it that taste that will have you asking for more.☺

And there you have it guys, your Oshithima and Ombidi😍🙌😋💓

Oshithima and Ombidi

If your like me you can just take pictures and share it with your friends and family or simply just invite a few people to come join you. For a good meal is better with company.

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