Luwombo love – the unofficial story
There is a universal saying that the way to a man’s heart is through their stomach. I am told that is still up for debate. The Baganda from Central Uganda have a saying that you should never ask a husband why he is home late.
It is assumed that wherever your husband is, he is working hard to make a living. Our mothers were cautioned never to start a quarrel when a man comes home late. Simply serve his dinner and wait for him to explain himself which he didn’t have to anyway.
Of course, some husbands took advantage of this and stayed out really late. This meant that when they got home, their dinner would be cold and their wives had to begin the unenviable task of relighting the fire. Over time, this became quite inconveniencing. Our mothers knew men are creatures of comfort. They always return to a place where they are most comfortable. This remix version of ‘don’t tell don’t not ask’ policy led to the invention of Luwombo. The royals will say that this meal belongs to them but I beg to differ.
Traditionally, Luwombo is composed of very simple ingredients that somehow turns into an awesome stew with a bewitching flavour and aroma. To make Luwombo, you need either beef, chicken, fish, groundnuts or mushrooms plus onions, tomatoes, water and seasoned with salt.
This mixture is then carefully wrapped in pre-prepared banana leaves with no split, put in a large pan lined with various materials to stop the boiling water from touching the stew and steamed for hours on a slow heat.
Here is a lady narrating her experience with making Luwombo
There different types of Luwombo. If you have the patience and time you can try a different recipe each time.
As you can tell by now, making Luwombo is very complicated and time-consuming. It is for this very reason why it was perfect for husbands and guests. The wives would leave the Luwombo on fire for as long as their husbands took to come home. Eventually, husbands couldn’t wait to get home to a delicious meal of Luwombo. As he ate and smacked his lips, the wives sat patiently and basked in their husband’s pleasure creating a simple and lasting love. Over time, this tradition evolved into a meal for guests.
When you next visit Uganda which I hope you’ll, don’t forget to order for Luwombo.