I·ATE Food Term of the Week: The Moambe Chicken


Are you a fan of African food and like hearty meals in sauce? Here is a traditional recipe that you do not want to miss: The Moambe Chicken. Known as the National dish of the Congo, this meal is shared all over Central Africa and has known a big success in Brussels lately. The name of this flavored homemade sauce comes from Mwamba which means Peanut sauce, or Peanut butter in Lingala. It’s an oily pulp that comes from the boiling of palm nuts fruits, without the flesh. Many other African countries have their own variations of this recipe: the Gabon calls it Nyembwe, Nigeria calls it Banga Soup, or eventually sauce graine in West Africa.

You will probably feel more familiar with the “Palm Butter” denomination that is more common in English. Since it’s rather hard to find fresh palm nuts in Europe, a canned sauce would be highly recommended to cook the Moambe Chicken. If you want to impress your family and friends with this exotic dish, read more! You will proudly make their mouth water with this very simple recipe to realize.




Ingredients: 4-6 persons

1 smoked chicken
2 onions
3 tomatoes
1 small eggplant
1 can 800gr Palm Sauce “Moambe”
2 cloves garlic
Pili-Pili, depending on your taste
Chicken broth
2 Bay leaf


Start with chopping all vegetables and sauté onions, tomatoes, crushed garlic in a pot. Pour the chicken broth, add a little water and simmer 5 min. Then, add the palm sauce, two pots of water, pili-pili and bay leaves.

Put the pan over a low heat. The set should simmer gently until you’ll get a bonded orange sauce. Don’t forget to taste the sauce and adjust the seasoning depending on your taste.

In the meantime, cut the smoked chicken into quarters and add salt, black pepper, ginger, and garlic, always according to your taste.

When it’s done, let simmer for 1 hour. You’ll know that you can take the pot away from the fire when you’ll get a thick Moambe Sauce.

Moambe Chicken is usually accompanied by Saka-Saka (vegetables), rice, plantains bananas, or even French fries.


Written by Robine Bonsenge – Study Visitor in Communication at the Terminology Coordination Unit of the European Parliament (Luxembourg) and currently enrolled in the Master in Learning and Communication in Multilingual and Multicultural Contexts at the University of Luxembourg. She holds a Bachelor degree in European Cultures (French section). She speaks French, English, Lingala, Dutch and she is learning German.