Burkina Faso breakfast

November 26, 2012 § 1 Comment

The latest in our Breakfasts of the World Project series.

Before our Burkina Faso breakfast I knew just two rather trivial things about the country:

1) It has one of the most memorably named capital cities in Africa – Ouagadougou
2) Favourite French beauty company L’Occitane sources much of the shea butter (beurre de karité in French) it uses in its moisturising products from womens’ cooperatives in Burkina Faso.

I now know that it’s a landlocked country in West Africa, bordered by 6 different countries including sub-Saharan Mali to the North and West, Côte d’Ivoire and Ghana to the South and Niger to the East.

Burkina Faso, formerly known as Haute or Upper Volta was a French colony until 1960. The country gained its current name in 1984, thanks to campaigning by the then president, the so-called African Che Guevara, Thomas Sankara.

Sankara was assassinated in 1987 in a military coup organised by former colleage Blaise Compaoré who remains president of what the UN lists as the world’s third poorest country to the present day.

Finding out what comprises a typical Burkinabé (the colloquial name for the people of Burkina Faso) breakfast was tricky. I found this solitary sentence on the Burkina Faso section of website everyculture.com

“In the morning wooden kiosks offer customers a breakfast of coffee, fried egg, and fresh French-style baguette.”

This simple breakfast encapsulates the country’s recent history, the baguette being a legacy of French colonialism and the meagre eggs and coffee a reminder of the country’s relative poverty.

Here are the raw materials for our Burkina Faso breakfast, purchased inauthentically from our local supermarket:

Tim did the honours, frying eggs to order:

The end result though simple was really rather good, and I’m now reminded to buy more of those L’Occitane shea butter products in the future.

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