Bravanese Bread (Muufo Baraawe) Pain Bravanais (Maanda)

Bravanese Bread (Maanda) (Muufo Baraawe) - Pain Bravanais

Maanda (Muufo Baraawe in Somali) is the traditional bread of the Bravanese (Brava, Somalia).  The story of Maanda is the story of the daily life of the Bravanese.  In Brava, Maanda is made from white, dehydrated corn kernels, and making it in the traditional way is a very time consuming process.

On day one, the corn is put in a woven basket (shkapu) and is taken to the mill where it is crushed. This process is called khparhazaa gelle.  The crushed corn is then taken back home where the skin of the corn is removed.  Children who are at the Qur’anic school age undertake the task of transporting the corn back and forth. The corn is then soaked overnight (koorhoza).

The next day, the soaked corn is again taken to a different mill where this time it is turned into a paste (kuta [pron. ‘t’ as in take]).  The Bravanese will say, “Maanda iteela [pron. ‘t’ as in take],” meaning the corn has been turned into paste.

The paste is mixed with a little flour, sugar, water, and a starter dough (khamiiri) left from the previous day’s Maanda dough.  It is then left to rise for about three hours.  In the meantime, the clay oven (ntanu) is prepared with fire w