Jollof rice is a common dish in West Africa, with many names and of course many variations on the recipe based on the region. Senegal is said to have actually devised this wonderful staple dish; The name Jollof rice originates from ‘Wolof’ the name of the people of Senegal and Gambia and they call it ‘Theiboudienne’. The following West African countries have an adaptation of Jollof rice; I know with certainty and have had Jollof from Ghana, Nigeria, Liberia, Ivory Coast; I have yet to have it from Togo, Cameroon, Mali, Gambia and Sierra Leone. There has been some contention among us, west Africans as who makes the best Jollof. #JollofWars.
I should preface the following by “humbly” admitting that as an Ivoirian, I can say unequivocally without a shred of bias that Cote d’Ivoire’s Jollof “Riz au gras” is by far the BEST JOLLOF! So obviously, I went into this festival with an ‘open, objective mind’.
The Jollof Festival in NYC took place on July 23rd, at 2pm at 26 Bridge Dumbo, Brooklyn NY; is meant to bring people together to provide all an opportunity to sample the dish and to then decide on a “winner”. Also present were vendors of all sort of African and African inspired goods. To name a few: Nafis Original African Hot Pepper Condiments and Sauces, have wonderful vegan dishes to sample. WC Artistry had an array of accessories. As well as Dabota Collection with journals with African print covers along with women and men clothing line and many more.
It was a wonderful event, Nigerian Jollof won, and that is all I will say about that! (I am not bitter at all). I look forward to the next one.