Chimaobi Ahamba

Chimaobi Ahamba forteller om hvordan tørrfisk ble en del av nigeriansk kosthold med bakgrunn i norsk nødhjelp under Biafra-konflikten.

Chimaobi Ahamba - Mat og meg - Memoar

Sandvika 12. januar 2022: Chimaobi Ahamba forteller om nigerianske og norske matretter og hvordan mat er en forlengelse av identiteten hans.

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Intervju med Chimaobi Ahamba hvor han snakker om å vokse opp i Norge med en far fra Nigeria som tilberedte både nigerianske og norske matretter. Han forteller om flere ulike fester og andre anledninger hvor det nigerianske samfunnet kommer sammen for å dele mat. Han forteller at en av grunnene til at nigerianere ble interessert i å flytte til Norge var fordi tørrfisk ble sendt som nødhjelp til Nigeria under Biafran krigen. Chimaobi forteller at mat er en forlengelse av identiteten hans, og at nigeriansk matkultur er veldig viktig for han.

Intervjuer er Jessica Lauren Elizabeth Taylor.


00:00: Introduction, Name, Place.

00:54: I was born in Ulleval Hospital in 1986, moved to Bøler then Oppsal.

01:23: My father did the cooking, lived alone with him from age 5. He cooked Norwegian and Nigerian foods.

02:50: Fufu is the name of the type of dish. can be made from semolina, plantain powder, white maize powder, pounded yam is traditional but father didn't have the equipment to pound or ferment it.

04:50: We use fish in everything. We use crayfish almost as a seasoning like salt and pepper.

06:26: My father had to work with what he had, he used the seasonings available here.

08:11: My father did not teach me how to cook. I didn't care about what was for dinner until adulthood. Traditionally in Nigeria, men did not cook. My father had to take that up. Young girls were taught to cook as a skill that you needed as a wife.

10:20: My worked in public sector so he witnessed lots of different Norwegian cuisine and maybe taught himself. For his indigenous foods, he watched his mother and aunties cook in the village where he grew up.

12:48: Some foods I hated that he served when I was young but now I love it. We never served African food to people who were not African. For birthday parties we served pølse and potetgull. My father was concerned with us being ostracized.

16:50: Parties were frequent when the Nigerian community was more tight knit. Food served at the parties was fried rice, jollof rice, fufu, sauce, OFAY, OHA, locust beans, water leaf, bitter leaf, SCENT leaf, meat pies, plantain, yam, red oil, palm oil, chin chin, puff puff, fish, gari.

20:02: There was a war in Nigeria, the Biafran war where some tribes in Nigeria wanted to separate from Nigeria. Because the borders were closed, both food and salf couldn't come in or out. In Norwegian there is a term called Biafra-Barn describing children who didn't not have enough salt in their diet. Food was dropped over the country from outside forces, in those food drops were Norwegian stockfish which heavily influenced the cooking. And a lot of Nigerians had the idea to migrate to Norway because of the food drops.

22:45: Now, I prepare the food since I am not married anymore. I cook very Western foods: pasta dishes, pizza. My kids have not tasted stockfish. Christmas is Norwegian food, ribbe. I shop at asian markets for the Eastern dishes.

27:44: It's very important to pass on the Nigerian food traditions. Food is an extension of my identity. Despite not knowing my native language or growing up in Nigeria, I still have a strong connection. I'm concerned that my children are too Norwegianized.