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Chikwangue is a savoury preparation made from flour of the root of the manioc (which is also known as cassava). For chikwangue, flour from the manioc is pulverised, made into a thick paste, and then left to ferment. It is then wrapped in banana leaf, tied up well, and steam cooked in water. In this form, it is believed to last for almost up to 3 weeks.

It is not uncommon to see tiny stalls selling freshly prepared Chikwangue in most market areas and busy localities. This is a very widely accepted, commonly consumed, inexpensive food item belonging to the Congo region. Some people consume two of these for lunch and have nothing else. However, the best combination is with "liboke" which is somewhat similar to bol jol using fish or meat pieces along with chopped tomato, onions and hot peppers tied up in a banana leaf with just a little water and placed on a grill over the flame. The fish pieces steam in the vegetable juices and makes this the perfect accompaniment to the Chikwangue.

Nutritive Value

Chikwangue is primarily a starchy food with not too many nutrients to offer.

A single serving of 100g supplies-

• 263 calories with calories from fat being 10.8

• Fat content of 1.2 g

• Total carbohydrate content of 59.1 g

• Protein content of 3.9 g

• Estimated % calories are 4% from fat, 90% from carbohydrates and 6% from protein.

Nutritional Improvement

Some low-fat crumbled cottage cheese may be added to the flour paste along with toasted flax seeds for added crunch. This would enhance the protein content and also add Vitamin E, B-vitamins, phosphorus, potassium, magnesium, iron, zinc, copper, manganese and Omega- 3 fats all of which play vital roles in the human system.