From Capodimonte to Hummel to Lladro to Wedgwood, the world does not suffer from a lack of fine pottery. These venerable manufacturers produce modern collectibles in signature styles. Is there room for yet another manufacturer, another source, a new style? Zawadee believes that the verve and whimsy of its ranks with the settled elegance and the studied cuteness of other famous manufacturers.
Reticule. Purse. Handbag. The terms basically mean the same thing and each serves the same basic purpose: to hold stuff. However, these practical accessories also fulfill other purposes as accompaniments to fashion, status symbols, and organizational aids. Zawadee offers the of fine leather handbags that hits the multiple purposes today’s women expect from their practical accessories.
Getting to know Africa includes experiencing the vastly different - and yummy - expressions of each culture through food.
Gages is a deceptively simple vegetable dish that originates in Sierra Leone. We say "deceptively simple" because the taste is extraordinary!
Area rugs offer many practical benefits, from providing cushion underfoot to warmth to protecting floors from scuffs and scratches to separating cold, hard surfaces from tender bare feet. Area rugs also offer aesthetic value by framing a space and adding color and interest. Of the considerations when purchasing an area rug, two in particular stand out: criteria for selection and caring for the carpet.
Almost every definition of a bowl goes pretty much as follows . . .
a round, deep dish or basin used for food or liquid
But we beg to differ!
We've been using teapots for thousands of years.
No kidding, thousands!
Teapots were invented back in the Yuan Dynasty (in China). The design likely progressed gradually from ceramic kettles and wine pots made of metals. Prior to that, only cauldrons were used to boil tea which was then served in bowls.
By the Ming Dynasty, use of the teapot was widespread in China
Early teapots were small in comparison to what we use today, as they were usually designed for a single tea drinker. Believe it or not, once the tea was brewed, they usually drank it straight from the teapot spout! If I'd done that as a child, my grandmother would have clipped my ear! Different strokes for different folks, indeed.
They might have actually been onto something, as single portions of tea are easier to control with regard to flavour and are easier to repeat consistently.
From the 17th century onward, tea was shipped from China to Europe, along with exotic spices and other luxuries. Porcelain teapots, often painted in the familiar blue and white we associate with many Chinese ceramics, were also shipped out.
Here's a fun fact! Because porcelain is completely vitrified, it can stand subjection to seawater without harm. Therefore the teapots could be stowed below deck. The tea, however, had to be stowed above deck in order to remain dry.
Swaziland is a small, landlocked monarchy in Southern Africa - best known for its wilderness reserves and festivals.
The borders of delightful Swaziland are shared with Mozambique and South Africa. The Lebombo Moutains, Mlawula Nature Reserve and the Hlane Royal National park are all fascinating spots to visit. Diverse wildlife including lions, hippos and elephants can be spotted throughout Swaziland.
Swaziland is known for civility and peacefulness, making it a great place to begin to experience Africa.
The KwaZulu Natal is about as eclectic a place as you can find. That's part of what makes it so interesting.
Rough and magical, smart and sophisticated, rural and urban, the KwaZulu Natal is a symphony of differences. Shabby suburbs nestle cheek to cheek with upscale malls. Beautiful beaches contrast with dramatic mountains and dry savannahs. African life beats a vigorous counterpoint in markets to the quieter and more pastoral settings in the rural areas.
We encounter handmade products in trendsetting boutiques, and view them as artfully arranged emblems of good taste. So, why do we think that?
That venerable tale of the tortoise and the hare isn't just an amusing story. It's a lesson in making the right choices - in the long run!
Natural fibres are a great advantage when selecting fashion accessories. Add to that the beauty of hand weaving or knitting and you get gorgeous, long-lasting fashion pieces that are uniquely different.
When production of fashion accessories also achieves minimal impact on the environment, productive employment and skills training, it is a Win/Win for everyone involved!
Tsandza Handweaving produces some of the most beautiful, gorgeously hued, bespoke quality fashion accessories we've ever seen.
Natural fibres are more comfortable, are less allergic to skin and production processes are less harmful to our environment. All wins as far as we are concerned.
We avoid synthetic fibres as they do not absorb perspiration and, for the most part, have a rough texture and feel we just don't like.
First established in 1979, Tsandza Weaving, formerly known as Rosecraft Weaving, is a social enterprise that produces high quality products, handwoven in pure natural fibres by talented artisans in rural Swaziland.
Consumers seeking ethically produced items that make an impact to a bigger purpose when making their purchase will find "forever presents" that not only represent beauty and skill, but also contribute to a more sustainable future for us all
MADE BY HAND
Every step of Tsandza’s production process is done by hand. From the dying, spinning & weaving to the knotting & tasseling. Even our sewing machines for labelling are manual! This means every item we make is unique and exclusive to you. Our impact on our environment is greatly reduced, and it also means we need many hands, ensuring we continue to be a vital source of training and income generation for many rural women.
It is quite a complex process requiring patience, skill and a lot of work!
The Tuareg silversmiths of Azel are a group of African artisans who truly excel at the creation of exquisite fine silver jewelry and leather artifacts. Tuareg history goes back 7 thousand years!
There are 21 styles attributed to this Cross Of Agadez,
aka The Southern Cross
Fall is nature's second "rejuvenating period". Just like Spring, in the fall our thoughts naturally turn to refreshing, cleaning, sprucing things up.
And there's a psychological history behind this instinct! In our prehistory, it was natural to make sure that everything was safe and in order before cold weather set in. Our intimate connection with nature dictates our behaviour!
Whether you call them slippers or house shoes, there is just no denying we have an attachment to the warmth and comfort they deliver.
Especially when the days get shorter and the evenings get colder! In fact, I have "seasonal" slippers to suit the temperature all year round.
The word "slippers" comes, of course, from the verb "to slip". As in - slip on your feet. Most think slippers originated in the East but it turns out that almost every culture has had a form of comfy foot gear to wear around the house.
The earliest recorded reference to a slipper was
in the 12th Century - in Vietnam
A Song Dynasty Officer described two different types of slippers with thongs between the toes.
The earliest reference to slippers in the West was about 1478.
Decorating with accessories is a terrific way to give your home a little lift - without breaking the bank!
First and foremost, choose quality items. While mass-produced items are plentiful and inexpensive, they aren't really what you want to surround yourself with. One or two quality pieces are far better than a vast array of run-of-the-mill pieces easily found in your local discount décor store.
Quality home décor accessories will also stand the test of time far better than mass-produced items of inferior manufacture
Look for unique pieces. You're unique - reflect that in your personal environment.
A stunning wall-mounted Impala
sculpted from recycled steel
is a unique piece you won't find just anywhere!
How many times (as a child) did you hear "Quit monkeying around"?
Well, now we're telling you we think you should! The holidays are coming up fast and we can think of no better way to present your lovely holiday culinary creations than on our beautiful one-of-a-kind .
We guarantee this platter will be a conversation starter at your holiday table!
If you want your guests to "tell the story" about the best tea party they ever attended, invite a Hyena to your table.
A giraffe sleeps only about two hours per day. Just imagine how much I could get done!
And they are so loved - the world round. The number of visitors to websites featuring the imminent birth of a baby giraffe is just astounding. And, who can forget the unbelievable response to the baby toy 'Sophie the Giraffe"? It was difficult to get your hands on one!
And, how can we forget the ubiquitious TOYSRUS mascot - Geoffrey the Giraffe? My grand-daughter can't get enough of the terrific children's book Giraffe's Can't Dance by Giles Andreae.
We thought you might be interested in a book we've recently read and highly recommend.
Billed on their website as "a magical experience for big kids and children alike", we have to say we've never seen a more interesting and interactive store!
Located in beautiful Hawkesbury, Ontario (on the Ottawa River and the border of Quebec), Jacob's Treasures is simply amazing.
Zawadee is proud to count this astounding store as one of our newest retailers of Zawadee products.
"Jewellery is a living art" says Seema Persad, Co-Founder of Symbols Jewellery in Trinidad & Tobago.
And Seema's business is thriving in the Carribean! At Zawadee, we think her success has a lot to do with her tagline - "Speak from the heart". Seema does, and it shows!
"I love clothes and I love to shop", says Debbie Noel, Zawadee's newest retailer.
And her namesake store, Debbie Noel Women's Fashions, is a showcase of Debbie's fashion sense! As she says, her love of shopping is a real asset, as she puts a lot of time into sourcing high quality merchandise for her customers.
We travel the world, searching for beautiful fashion, jewelry, home décor and beverages of African origin or influence to delight your customers!
We are inspired by the rich artistic and cultural heritage that exists in Africa and other parts of the world, represented by a vast array of artisanal groups creating remarkable works of art, jewelry, food and beverage and home décor items.
If you are going to Canada's largest gift fair - please stop by and see us. We're located in fabulous "Artisan's Row", Booth #10828.
And if you're not going, you can still register in our contest and preview our gorgeous products in our online Wholesale Catalog.
Retailers can register for a chance to win one of our 6 exciting prizes
by previewing our Wholesale Catalog
$100 Restaurant Gift Card
$30 Moroccan Lantern
Getting to know Africa includes experiencing the vastly different - and yummy - expressions of each culture through food.
this curry is just the best for hot summer weather!
Yum! Yum! Yum! This amazing curry dish is just the very best for hot summer weather. Technically both vegan and gluten free, this fresh tasting curry is a snap to make.
our zawadee-sponsored bike team - spokes & folks - geared up "big time" to fight multiple sclerosis
Riding 150 kilometers in extremely hot temperatures (but hey, they weren't complaining) our Spokes & Folks members (27 of them) raised an astounding $14,000 to help fight MS. It's no wonder they won the Best Team Spirit award - coveted by the 133 teams in the MS Gear Ride.
Our oldest rider is 67 and our youngest (2 of them) are 10! Despite the heat, everyone displayed amazingly cheerful and cooperative spirits. Just two flat tyres and one "wonky knee" according to Captain Robert's damage report.
What an incredible idea!
Every once in a while, someone crops up and sends us something that makes us go, "Yeah, right on!". (You can tell what generation we're from!)
Or just a warm, brown beverage?
All kidding aside, we actually have a friend who says just that. Her theory is that if you are only going to have a couple of cups a day, you should truly have the best coffee experience possible.
A self-admitted "coffee snob", she boycotts many of the more popular national coffee chains, claiming that what they sell is "just a warm, brown beverage" but not coffee.
She finds it hard to believe that people who will go to great lengths to buy the best wine for their dollar, don't apply the same logic to the coffee they consume on a daily basis.
Getting to know Africa includes experiencing the vastly different - and yummy - expressions of each culture through food.
We grew up eating these bran rusks!
They are delicious no matter what age you are. A lovely crunchy treat to enjoy with a good cup of coffee or tea. We call them our version of biscotti.
Every one of us makes them slightly differently. We have experimented with the dried fruit ingredients. We've tried dried cranberries, blueberries, dried mixed fruit (chopped up), a variety of different types of raisins, dried dates . . . just use your creative culinary imagination! You can omit the dried fruit entirely, but we think they are better with the addition of fruit.
Black panthers are a symbol of courage, strength and personal leadership, and are revered by many throughout the world.
Because of their rarity, unbridled strength and power, it’s no surprise that these majestic, solitary creatures have woven their way into African mythology.
We don't know what others call these delicious little patties, but in our house, they're called "veggie cakes". They are vegetarian (maybe even vegan), so make a terrific meal if you're trying to eat less meat. About the consistency of a crab cake, they are very flavourful and relatively easy to make.
We try to have several "meatless" meals per week so this really fits the bill! You have to make sort of a paste with the chickpea flour but it isn't at all difficult.
Three ingredients? Under an hour? This recipe is just not to be believed! So simple. So delicious.
You can use any chutney you like, but we prefer to get Mrs. Ball's Chutney when we can. Any store that sells African (or South African) groceries should have it. For those of you in the Toronto area (like we are) - we suggest a trip to The South African Store in downtown Toronto. You can also order online from them. They have quite a variety of Mrs. Ball's Chutney for sale.
You can, of course, make your own chutney! Here's a link to a recipe we found at Foodgeeks for a chutney they claim is very similar to Mrs. Ball's. We haven't tried it yet. If you do, please let us know how you like it.
We try to keep these three ingredients on hand pretty much all the time. Because this recipe is so easy and so quick, it makes for a great meal when you're all busy. It's also saved us when people have dropped in and we're "casting about" for something tasty to serve.
Buy chicken thighs or boneless breasts ahead when they are on sale. Keep at least a couple of jars of chutney and packets of onion soup mix on hand and "Bob's Your Uncle", you've got the making of a great meal. Add some rice on the side and a little salad and you're good to go.
There is a wide variety of chutney chicken recipes around - just do an internet search and you'll see! We have made this one for years, though and keep returning to it because it's both easy to make and easy to keep ingredients on hand for. Don't mess with perfection, right?
While this recipe is often quoted as originating in Uganda, we've encountered all sorts of variations, all over the place! No matter where it comes from, it is a simple, delicious and very appetite-satisfying dish.
Matoke is a reference to plantain (sometimes known as plantain bananas). This dish can be prepared with or without the meat and beef broth. It's equally tasty as a vegetarian dish.
As with all our recipes, we often vary this dish. We've added carrots or sweet potatoes or yams, different types of peppers. Used vegetable broth instead of beef broth. Sometimes putting together a stew at our house involves tidying up the fridge. You know - "let's use this up" or "a bit of this and a bit of that". Experimentation with recipes is fun, in our opinion, and often creates a tasty result!
Often considered to be the national dish of Senegal - Thieboudienne - basically means fish and rice. Some other African countries refer to this dish as "riz au gras" or "Jollof Rice".
You will see a wide variety of spellings of the name. Cee bu jen, theibou dienn, tie biou dian, etc.
Classic recipes for Thieboudienne contain netetou (also sometimes called soumbala or sumbala). Many cooks substitute the more readily available South Asian Fish Sauce. How much to substitute is really a matter of taste. We use about a tablespoon but you may want to experiment to suit your own taste.
If you like Polenta, you're going to just love Ugali! They are both made from cornmeal. Whether an accompaniment to a soup or stew or alongside meat, chicken or fish dishes, Ugali is a delight.
And, it's remarkably simple to make. Basically just a combination of cornmeal and water, stirred until well thickened.
Black-eyed Peas are a big deal in West Africa! They show up in a wide variety of soups and stews. This particular recipe is very tasty and you can vary the vegetables to change it up a bit. You can make this recipe "thick or thin"! Add more vegetables and less liquid and it becomes more stew-like.
This recipe is technically vegetarian, although we admit we often substitute chicken broth for the water. Which makes it decidedly NOT vegetarian. Up to you!
We love the name of this simple vegetable stir fry! Sounds like the lead in for a disco song - Chakalaka - Chakalaka! Can't you just hear it?
You can pair this recipe up with almost anything! It can be a side dish or, as we mostly enjoy it, all on it's own!
Super simple to make and just plain delicious. The trick is to not over-cook the vegetables. We like ours still a bit "crunchy".
The name "Aquamarine" is drived from the Latin word for seawater. While aquamarines range in colour, value has always been placed on the more blue varieties of this gorgeous gemstone. The birthstone for the month of March, Aquamarine is on our list of favourite stones - not only for it's beauty, but also for it's affordability!
We love to read Jamie Oliver's recipes because we always learn something from them other than just the ingredients and instructions. Jamie uses food to tell a story - about where the recipe came from, the diaspora of people and the spread of cultures (and therefore their cuisine). He makes food interesting and we follow him closely.
So, although we'd been making this recipe for years and years, we suddenly thought "why is it called Jollof Chicken & Rice". So we turned to Jamie Oliver to find out why! His explanation follows:
"Jollof rice is more of a concept than a recipe, because it’s found in various guises all over West Africa. Its other name is Benachin, which means “one pot” in the language of the Wolof people who invented it – evidently throwing lots of lovely food in a pan and letting the heat do its thing has always been a popular cheat."
The Wolof people ruled in what is now known as Senegal (1360 to 1549). They were quite powerful and wealthy and before their empire disintegrated, The Wolof traded with Europe. Before their kingdom disappeared, The Wolof spread through travel, trading with others and conquests.
As a result, Jollof Rice is a popular dish in Ghana - over 2,000 km from The Wolof homeland in Senegal. It is also found in Nigeria and Cameroon. This "spread" of the recipe has resulted in varying ingredients but the basic recipe has stayed pretty much the same.
Jamie Oliver often says that "the devil is in the detail" and recommends using the best ingredients you can find and ensuring you use long grain rice. Jamie's recipe is amazing - we highly recommend checking it out!
Here's an interesting fact! The word Ghana means “warrior king”, so they can probably stand the heat of the Scotch Bonnet Pepper often used in this delicious dish.
Our family recipe doesn't include a Scotch Bonnet Pepper, although we have prepared this dish with one in the past. We warn you, it does add quite a bit of heat!
Josiah Henson was born into slavery in Maryland. He escaped to what was then known as Upper Canada (Ontario) in 1830 and founded the Dawn Settlement (near Dresden, Ontario).
Running for an astounding 2,600 miles through a massive delta, The Niger River is the principal river of West Africa.
The river source is in the Guinea Highlands in southeastern Guinea and the river discharges into the Gulf of Guinea on the Atlantic Ocean.
The Niger is the third longest river in Africa. Only the Nile and the Congo rivers are longer.
Mud houses on the center island at Lake Debo, a wide section of the Niger River
Source: Wikipedia, Creative Commons, Labeled for Reuse
The Rise in Popularity of African Art
Make these for your sweetie pie! Now, we have to confess, we've never made these ourselves. Although, we can say with certainty that they are truly delicious.
This recipe comes to us from a favourite "Auntie". We've enjoyed these special treats since we were quite little!
We thought you might be interested in a book we've recently read and highly recommend.
We are ever so pleased to announce the winners of our recent 12 Days of Christmas Contest.
We had a terrific response to this contest from our loyal fans and followers. Please make sure to watch for our upcoming events. If you haven't already, please sign up for our updates to make sure you don't miss out!
If you're looking for something to spice up the post-holiday doldrums, look no further. Just a short trip to Niagara-on-the-Lake on January 16th is the perfect choice!
Referred to as Mandingo, Mandinka or Malinke, the Mandingo represent one of the largest ethnic groups in sub-Saharan Africa. Based primarily in West Africa, the population of Mandingo peoples is about 11 million.
Sometimes a cigar isn't just a cigar! These little "wrap-ups" are cigar shaped morsels of goodness and (as we thought everyone would be a bit sick of both turkey and holiday cooking by now) a terrific quick recipe that's sure to please.
The truly ambitious cooks can make their own phyllo dough but, we can assure you, we buy the frozen dough when we make this recipe! New York Times - Cooking has a great recipe for making your own dough, including a handy video on rolling out the phyllo - something we find rather challenging!
Garnet – January’s birthstone signifies health, prosperity, perseverance and strength. Derived from the Latin word granatum, which means seed, the stone is known for its resemblance to the pomegranate seed and represents trust and eternal friendship, making it the perfect gift for a cherished friend.
Enter for a chance to win in our exciting new 12 Days of Christmas Contest
The Popularity of African Sculptures
The way we choose to decorate our homes today is very different than how our parents’ homes were decorated. While art has always been an important part of décor, it is more common today for homeowners to take more leeway, often incorporating unique and eye catching pieces of art. As a result, African sculpture is more frequently encountered in home decor.
Tanzanite – December’s alternative birthstone - is a gemstone that imparts vision and spirituality. A member of the zoisite mineral family, tanzanite supports compassion, calmness, and peacefulness with its rich, purple-blue hue.
Running out of ideas for using up all that leftover Turkey?
We make this fantastic Turkey & Peanut Soup, which we began making from an Emeril Lagasse recipe that is just incredibly good. Emeril uses ground turkey and, yes, at first we did too.
Then, we realized that this soup would be a great way to use up leftover turkey and - VOILA! - our version came to fruition.
Without taking up too much of your time, we just couldn't stop ourselves from sharing achieving the major milestone of 10,000 Facebook Fans.
While Canadian Thanksgiving is past, American Thanksgiving is coming up soon! There are still lots of good buys on turkey at local supermarkets.
Whether made with inexpensive turkey legs or (as we usually do) with leftover turkey, this stew is a great "warmer upper" for those nippy fall days.
Our blog series exploring the peoples and cultures of Africa has been such a success with our readers, we thought you might be interested in a series of publications available from the Harriet Tubman Institute - about the Global Migrations of African Peoples.
We have found these publications to be immensely interesting as we learn about where African people migrated to (willingly or unwillingly) and, more positively, about the tremendous influences in music, arts and customs they brought to bear.
The Yoruba are excellent craftsmen and are held to be among the most skilled and productive of all of Africa.
They produce remarkable leatherwork, glass, weaving, wood carving and black smithing. As the Yoruba tend to gather to live in densely opulated urban areas, this allows for a centralization of wealth and for a market economy that supports patronage of the arts produced by this prolific group of craftspeople.
Citrine – November's birthstone (as well as Topaz) – is widely regarded as the “healing quartz”. Derived from the French word “citrin,” meaning lemon, Citrine supports health and vitality, and encourages hope, energy and warmth within the person wearing the stone.
Halloween is one of the most fun and most exciting times of the year for children, and, in recent years, it has increased in popularity with adults as well. While it is perhaps most popular in the United States, Canada and the Western World, traditions and celebrations vary from country to country. Even though it may not be as popular as in other countries, Halloween is celebrated in South Africa.
Keepers of the Ark of the Convenant?
The Ark of the Convenant was venerated in the First Temple of Jerusalem during the reign of Solomon (circa 970-930). Then, it vanished!
After Thanksgiving, each year, you can often take advantage of post-holiday turkey sales at your local grocers.
Try this North African inspired recipe. Harissa is a spice often used in Moroccan foods. Basically, a hot chili sauce comprised of several varieties of peppers, spices and herbs. This kicks up the flavour immensely! You can keep any leftover rub in the fridge for a couple of weeks and enjoy it on all sorts of things. We use it on both chicken and steak. Delicious!
Opal is considered the birthstone for people born in October or under the signs of Scorpio and Libra along with pink tourmaline. The gemstone associated with celebration of the 14th year of marriage, the word opal is believed to come from the Sanskrit word "upala" - which means precious stone. It may also be related to the Greek word "Opallios" which means to see a change of colour.
It's very hard to define Harriet Tubman. Her dedication and bravery overwhelms us.
Born a slave, beaten and whipped, Harriet Tubman's devout Christianity allowed her to pray for her "master", despite his treatment of her. Harriet's finely honed sense of right and wrong steeled her resolve and ultimately she escaped to Philadelphia.
There's just nothing like a hot, satisfying bowl of stew to cheer everyone up as the weather turns cold. This is our "go to" recipe for the fall season.
If you're looking for something fun and fantastic to do, please join us at Food for the Soul. Great food, great music, great products. All round fun for the entire family. See you there!
Join Dominic Mancuso & Chendy Leon to explore the rich musical influences of Africa. The soulful sounds of these extraordinary musical explorers - unplugged - is delightfully entertaining.
Zawadee - Bring Africa Home is pleased to present Juno and Canadian Folk Music Award Winner Dominic Mancuso and his good friend and collaborator Chendy Leon - an extraordinary percussionist who has worked with a long list of internationally acclaimed artists, including Jesse Cook, The Parachute Club and Sultans of String.
This super simple stew is so tasty you will make it over and over again. We often do a double batch and enjoy it for several meals.
The recipe calls for 1 teaspoon of garam masala which is a mixture of a variety of spices. AllRecipes has a failsafe garam masala recipe. You can buy it pre-mixed, but it is so easy and economical to make it yourself.
Sapphires get their name from the Latin word sapphirus which means blue. Often referred to as "the gem of the heavens" or the "celestial gem", sapphires mirror the colour of the sky at certain times of day.
Rubies are the red version of the mineral corundum - just like sapphire!
Take a Photo Safari through Serengeti National Park
When you think of an African safari, chances are images of the Serengeti spring to mind. Nothing quite imbues the grandeur of Africa and its wildlife as the vast open plains of the Serengeti.
Although the temperature is an astounding 87 degrees Fahrenheit today, we looked at the calendar and realized that September - and back to school time - is just around the corner. In our house, we get much busier between work and school and everything else, so the slow cooker is our good friend!
Chicken Marrakesh hails from (obviously) Morocco. It is a hearty, filling dish and super easy when prepared in the slow cooker. There are a number of online recipes for the slow cooker but don't hesitate to experiment. For example, AllRecipes and food.com both have a terrific recipe which calls for garbanzo beans. We use red kidney beans, or, frankly, whatever we have in the cupboard. Quite by accident, we ended up using black beans, and the results were quite delicious!
Zawadee - Bring Africa Home is pleased to announce we're going to be part of Bravo Niagara! - The North Star Festival: Voices of Freedom. Niagara-On-The-Lake - October 2-4, 2015.
Celebrating and honouring the courageous freedom-seekers who followed the North Star to Niagara - a terminus of the Underground Railroad, this inaugural festival showcases the sights, sounds, history and tastes of the Niagara Region's rich black history and African origins.
Great music, fascinating history, mouth-watering food and a boat cruise down the Niagara River. Entertaining, fun and educational, this festival is a terrific experience for the entire family!
Sambal is the perfect summer side to accompany almost any dish. Fresh and flavourful, this lovely combination is easy to prepare. Grated carrots and apples pair up with garlic, ginger and rice wine vinegar to produce a tasty slaw.
There are many varieties of Sambal, showing up from Sri Lanka to South Africa, incorporating different ingredients - cucumber, tomato, onion and even pineapple! Most Sambals have a common trait - they are crisp and fresh versions of a slaw salad.
Spicy Ethiopian Red Sauce has long been a favourite in our family. You can prepare the spice blend ahead and use it on all sorts of things. We use it to flavour salmon, chicken breasts or thighs, steaks or even on shrimp.
We guarantee you'll love this dish. Some recipes we've seen suggest a dollop of yogurt on top just before serving. It is delicious!
Peridot has been the official August Birthstone since 1912 but its history goes back much further than that! The name comes from the French word ``peritot`` - which means gold - likely because the stone can vary toward the colour gold. Peridot is also given to celebrate a 16th Wedding Anniversary.
For any Leo in your group of friends and family (or, for that matter, anyone who likes Peridot), this collection of Peridot history, myth and lore would be a great accompaniment to the gift of this beautiful semi-precious gemstone.
Spelled "peri peri" in Africa, Piri piri sauce (used as a seasoning or marinade) is Portuguese in origin. Peri Peri African Chicken is popular in Angola, Namibia, Mozambique and South Africa. We say you can't go wrong with this combination of ingredients! Yum Yum, indeed.
Zawadee - Bring Africa Home is pleased as punch to sponsor The Spokes and Folks Bike Team in this admirable pursuit.
And we also want to do a little bragging while we're at it.
Actually, this summer our bike riding has pretty much eliminated the winter love handles! That said, we simply love "ftat", which is a simple flat bread. Easy to make, can be stored for up to a week and pairs well with lots of different meals.
Ftat is a tasty addition to pretty much any summer meal and is often served with salad. Usually this "cooked on the stove top" flatbread is just roughly torn up and either covered with soups, stews or salad, or is used as a "dipper" for a variety of foods. Many cultures have similar recipes.
The Okavango Delta: Gorgeous Lushness in the Desert
River deltas typically lead to the sea, but the Okavango never quite makes it there. Instead, it dumps its water onto open land, flooding the savanna with much-needed water for the surrounding plants and wildlife.
We're (as the headline suggests) absolutely coocoo for Kuku Paka. What's that you say? Simple - Coconut Chicken Curry.
It's breath-taking! No wonder this majestic site is also known as "Smoke That Thunders".
The spray shoots over 400 meters in the air and can be seen from 30 kilometers away. It is twice the height of Niagara Falls.
There’s no doubt about it. Victoria Falls is massive and awe-inspiring.
We love Tilapia and this simple, straightforward version is easy to make. African cuisine uses peanuts in a variety of different ways to create tasty culinary treats. This one will become a favourite, we're sure!
When you think of the unparalleled natural beauty of Africa, Mount Kilimanjaro no doubt springs to mind.
Located in northern Tanzania, near the town of Moshi, Mount Kilimanjaro’s snow-capped peak juts up dramatically from the midst of a vast savanna. It’s made up of three volcanic cones—Kibo, Mawenzi and Shira.
In the harsh desert environment of the Kunene region in Namibia, live the Himba People.
Despite the modern world creeping ever closer, the Himba have resisted change and preserved their own identity and rich culture.
Hundreds of kilometers off the coast of Madagascar exists a special place, which has remained relatively untouched by humans.
There are numerous islands scattered in the Indian Ocean off the coast of Africa, and among these is the Aldabra Atoll. This island ecosystem—which belongs to the Seychelles—consists of four islands surrounding a large shallow lagoon.
The African wild dogs’ numbers are dwindling fast. They once roamed much of the continent, but today can only be found in a few small pockets scattered throughout Africa. It’s estimated that there may be as few as 3,000-6,000 left.
Imagine seeing upwards of a million and a half vibrant-colored flamingos congregated on the shores of a single lake.
Well, it’s not an uncommon occurrence in the Kenyan Lake System of the Great Rift Valley.
About 25 miles south of the bustling city of Cape Town, tucked near the southern tip of South Africa, is one of the most gorgeous and unique displays of plant life in the world.
The Cape Floristic Region is one of just six designated floral kingdoms worldwide. Africa is proudly home to 129 World Heritage sites, spread over 37 African countries.
The Omo Valley in southern Ethiopia is as picturesque as it comes. Hills, mountains, rivers, graceful waterfalls, jungles and numerous exotic wild animals and plants all converge in this one area. The grand Omo River snakes through the region emptying in Lake Turkana at the Kenyan border.
Africa is home to an incredible array of fascinating animals—among them many of the world’s most majestic big cats.
Imagine a society with no warfare, no rules, no official leaders, no known history of famine and relatively no personal possessions; a place where people truly live in the here and now.
Well, such a place still exists.
In northern Tanzania—in one of the harshest environments on the planet—live the Hadzabe people. The Hadzabe are a small indigenous ethnic group, numbering fewer than 1,000.
"This Maasai Olympics has been the greatest celebration of Maasai culture I have ever attended,” - Katoo Ole Metito (Maasai), Minister of Internal Security, Government of Kenya.
The Zulu (pronounced ZOO-loo) people are one of the most well-known groups in Africa, most notably for their unique style of speaking. Descendants of the Nguni-speaking people, they are known for their "click" speaking and singing.
Many of us won’t even consider starting the day without our daily jolt of coffee.
For centuries, people all over the world and from all walks of life have enjoyed sipping this tasty, caffeinated beverage.
But coffee is more than a simple drink. Its social aspect throughout history cannot be denied. Sipping a cup of coffee is a ritualistic experience for some. Coffee houses throughout the ages have provided a place for people to share art, poetry, music, politics and simple camaraderie.
With a crisp chill in the air and snow under our feet, many of us are searching our wardrobes for something to wear that will increase warmth without making us look like the Michelin Man!
Do you ever wonder where the Angora fabric in your winter sweater and scarves comes from? You may be surprised!
While many people commonly associate bamboo with home décor items, mats, furniture and different types of art, there is a growing trend in the fashion industry as more and more clothing designers are using bamboo fabric rather than cotton. Our bamboo scarves and cowls are a great example!
African carvings have become very popular décor items in recent years. With people taking more of an interest in global art forms, and with the rise in popularity of abstract sculptures, this type of art is popping up in homes, offices and galleries across North America.
A particular type of African carving that is particularly alluring are handmade soapstone carvings from Kenya. While soapstone has been used for years as a carving material, it is the Kisii stone that is most desirable.
Each year, millions of Serengeti wildebeests migrate across the African continent. But they are not the only ones. A number of different groups of animals move throughout Africa in a similar pattern each year, with the goal being to find water to drink and land to graze.
Zebras are one of the largest of the secondary groups that are part of the Serengeti migration each year. In fact, more than 200,000 zebras participate in this amazing journey each year.
Similar to Black Friday in the United States, Boxing Day, which is held on the day after Christmas, is one of the most popular shopping days in Canada and in other parts of the world.
It’s a day where deal seekers are out en masse, looking to take advantage of huge sales. It’s a day where millions of Canadians get up early, it’s almost impossible to get a parking spot at your local mall, and there are line ups to get into stores – all in hopes of getting a smoking deal on a TV, buy that gift they didn’t get for Christmas, or to cash in their gift cards.
“When we plant trees, we plant
the seeds of peace and hope.”
The Green Belt Movement (GBM) is an environmental organization, based in Kenya, which seeks to empower communities to conserve the environment. It was founded in 1977 by Professor Wangari Maathai as an offshoot of the National Council of Women of Kenya (NCWK) in response to the requests of rural Kenyan women. These women noticed a number of environmental issues that were posing a threat to the African environment, namely the drying up of streams, unsecured food supplies.
Tuareg culture is rich in history and tradition. A semi-nomadic Berber people, the Tuareg inhabit a large area of the middle and western Sahara and travel throughout Algeria, Mali, Niger and as far as Libya, Morocco, Tunisia and Nigeria.
In fact, Tuareg people don't perceive the Sahara as one desert, but as many. They call the Sahara "Tinariwen" which means "the deserts". The Tuareg language is spoken by more than 1 million people.
Extraordinary silversmiths, the Tuareg produce some of the most unique silver jewelry in the world.
Commonly referred to as one of the great wonders of the world, the migration of african wildlife over the Serengeti is one of the most beautiful things to see in Africa.
The Serengeti wildebeest migration is a movement of vast numbers. The wildebeest are accompanied by large numbers of zebra, gazelle, eland and impala along their journey. The groups of animals move in a similar pattern throughout the year, making it a continual process as they are constantly looking for fresh land to graze and high quality water sources.
Most people have probably heard about the issues with poaching in Africa, and you may have even seen some of the images in National Geographic or on the Internet or television.
What most people fail to realize, though, is how brutal and serious an issue poaching actually is.
Illegal wildlife trade is a $19 billion per year industry – something that is causing some of the most endangered species on earth to reach critically low levels. Without action, many of these species could become extinct a lot sooner than you think.
Black Friday, the day after the Thanksgiving holiday in the United States, has become a cultural phenomenon.
It’s the biggest shopping day of the year for retailers and shoppers in the U.S.
We have all seen the images of people lining up for days in advance of huge sales that only happen once per year. We have also seen the crazy videos of people fighting over items, and the mass crowds in stores that make you wonder if it’s worth the trouble. The sales numbers suggest that people in the US (and increasingly, in Canada) believe the crowds and line ups are worth the deals.
As those of you who follow us (and thanks for doing so) know, we recently announced our collaboration with Dominic Mancuso Group (and others), beginning a new movement - Evoking Humanity.
Evoking Humanity is an effort undertaken to increase global harmony by sharing (and listening to) each others stories - our "truths". It is an open invitation to engage in celebrating each other's cultures and experiences.
One of the most popular and fascinating forms of Makonde art is sculpture – especially sculptures. These pieces have become extremely popular today with art collectors and homeowners alike. Considering they come in many shapes, sizes, and types of carvings, it’s not surprising they are popping up all over the world.
Thanksgiving is a celebration that is observed in a select few countries around the world. However, while it is not a universal celebration, many other countries and regions do share similar festivals and celebrations. In Africa, it is known as Festival of the Rains or the Homowo Festival.
Drums have been around since the dawn of time
They are deeply rooted in history, spirituality, tribal ceremonies, and, of course, music. Every culture has a unique drumming history. Many primitive cultures used drums to celebrate battle victories and for rituals. Others used drums for worship as well as for music. The drum permeates the history of many cultures.
This Young Man Is A Shining Example: How An 11 Year Old Helped In The Fight Against Multiple Sclerosis
"Don't tell me the sky's the limit when there are footprints on the moon"
Zawadee - Bring Africa Home sponsored the Spokes & Folks Team in the recent London to Grand Bend "Gear Up to End MS" ride. Doing so was a life-enriching experience for our entire Zawadee family.
The Fight Against Multiple Sclerosis - How 1,710 Cyclists Raised 1.34 Million Dollars in One Weekend
The Fight Against Multiple Sclerosis – How 1,710 cyclists raised 1.34 million dollars in 1 weekend!
It seems unbelievable but it is indeed true.
Zawadee - Bring Africa Home sponsors Spokes and Folks Team
An astounding 1,714 cyclists on 143 teams will come together on July 26th-27th, 2014 to take part in a ride that will make a difference - Gear Up to End MS - Grand Bend to London, Ontario and back - 150 km. Proceeds raised fund both world-class research and innovative programs and services across Canada.
One of the most interesting forms of African art - one that we are seeing more and more in homes around the world - is . It is the visual appeal and abstract nature of the hand carvings especially that intrigue people, making these pieces very desirable in both home and office décor.
About Makonde Art
Makonde art has become popular in Western culture because of the fascinating nature of the pieces and the history of the Makonde culture. The Makonde peoples from Mozambique and Tanzania are known for their hand carved wood pieces in the global artistic community.
It was an evening of music and movement at Moving Forward’s Moroccan Nights Gala last Friday night as hundreds gathered to celebrate and honor Marie Fiorellino Di Poce, founder of ETA Vaughan Women’s Shelter & Outreach Centre.
Zawadee - Bring Africa Home was pleased to participate in this worthwhile event.
We spent an enjoyable evening talking to gala participants about our artwork, jewelry, sculpture and home decor. Our lovely handcrafted African wildlife and were highly popular! Our Maasai Table Decor benefits both street children and women in need of employment through the Arusha Street Children Project.
The Bazaruto Archipelago is a region in Mozambique consisting of a group of six islands, just off the mainland coast of Southeast Africa.
There has been resurgence in the popularity of African art, especially when it comes to wood carvings and traditional African works of art. When most people envision African art, they are quite often thinking about the beautiful hand carvings created by the Makonde of Tanzania and Mozambique.