Nandi Community

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Food history within the culture
The Nandi people are a number of Kenyan tribes living in the highland areas of the Nandi Hills UasinGishu, Transnzoia, Nakuru and parts of Narok in Rift Valley who speak the Nandi language. They are a sub – group of the Kalenjin people they are first of Kalenjin community. Its population is approximated to be 260,000 people. Before British colonization they were sedentary cattle-herders (cattle, goats, sheep, poultry keeping), sometimes also practicing agriculture cultivation of crops such as millet, sorghum, cassava, beans, banana, vegetables, passion fruits. Their settlement was more or less distributed rather than being grouped into villages. Traditionally, Nandi houses were round, walls were constructed of bent saplingsenclosed to higher post are covered with a mixture of mud and cow dung, roofs were thatched with local grasses. Their clothing consisted of either domesticated or wild animals. Earrings were common for both sexes in the past, including heavy brass coils that made the earlobe stretch down almost to the shoulder. The also practiced circumcision of both sexes. Boy’s circumcision festivals took place about every seven and a half years and boys circumcised at the same age like other Nilotic groups these age set (called Ibinda or Ibinweek) were given names from a limited fixed cycle. Each age set is further subdivided into a subset (Siritietor Siritaik) about four years after this festival the previous generation officially handed defenses of the newly circumcised youths. Girl’s circumcision excising the clitoris took place in preparation for marriage. Lunch and dinner are the main meals of the day. Breakfast usually consists of tea (milk) and left overs from the previous nights meal. Launch time they took ugali served with mursik, vegetables or meat, likewise with dinner they only alternated milk and meat since it was a taboo to take them at once. Most lunch and dinner were eaten late due to day time activities such as distance grazing of cattle.

Protein sources
-Fresh milk
-Sour milk

Carbohydrates and fat sources

-Cream obtained from milk
-Fatty parts of meat in ram tails.

Prominent vegetables and fruits
-Black night shed
-(Amaranth leaves)
-Pumpkin leave

-Passion fruits
-Wild fruits i.e. Lamaek, Chobinek.

Spices and seasonings
-The spice used was the ashes passed through water resulting to a liquid called “Munyek” which was boiled into a hard cake and wrapped in a dry banana leave for storage. Also they used honey and salt.

Beverages and desserts
-Kipketinik – alcohol made from honey
-Local beer (Busaa) made from millet and sorghum.

Food with cultural significance
-Meat used ass a sacrifice when the community learned that their was something wrong within the community. -Local alcohol (Busaa) was used when correcting something wrong or discussing an important issue by the elders of the community. -Women were not allowed to take productive organs and the tongue. -Also it was a taboo to take milk and meat at once it was believed to be killing the animal.

Typical day’s menu
Among the Nandi typical day menu included several occasion such as: - -Birth
-Harvesting seasons
-Onset of rains

Holiday menu
Beer, music and dances served many functions. Music has an integral part of ceremonial occasion such as births, initiations, digging the field, herding livestock. Dances for these occasions were performed while wearing ankle bells and were accompanied by traditional instruments such as flutes, horns and drums. Beer was used during initiations, births and traditional weddings.

Health beliefs and concerns
Traditionally the Nandi religion is based upon the belief in a supreme god, Asis or Cheptalel who is represented in the form of...
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