Senegal: Chef Pierre Thiam

Discover the taste of Teranga – a Senegalese word for a lifestyle of hospitality that includes welcoming friends, family and strangers into your home for food and fellowship.Chef Pierre Thiam shares recipes and ingredients of the vibrant Senegalese cuisine in his new cookbook Senegal.


Chef Pierre Thiam was an Iron Chef contestant who battled Chef Bobby Flay with the ingredient of papaya.

How interesting that Senegal is a mixing bowl of a variety of cultural cuisines. In addition to its own special foods, Senegalese recipes also reflect the French influence. In addition, Vietnamese and Lebanese cuisines also are woven into the society’s menu of tastes. And of course Senegal and other African countries have had a huge influence in cuisines across the world. Growing up in the south, I enjoyed okra.

In this podcast, Chef Pierre Thiam will share food stories and Senegalese lifestyle tips with you. It’s fascinating how everyone shares a meal around a large bowl, truly instilling a connectedness to the family and to food.

For a delicious and easy Senegalese recipe, try the Kale, Avocado & Grapefruit Salad one featured in his cookbook Senegal.

This is an easy and delicious dish to make from Senegal cookbook

This is an easy and delicious dish to make from Senegal cookbook

Kale, Avocado & Grapefruit Salad

By Chef Pierre Thiam

Featured on page 126 in Senegal: Moderen Senegalese Recipes from the Source to the Bowl

5 ounces baby kale

1 avocado, thinly sliced

1 cup grapefruit segments (See Note; save the membranes)

½ red onion, thinly sliced

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1 garlic clove, minced

Fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

¼ cup extra virgin olive oil

½ cup roasted, unsalted cashew nuts, coarsely chopped

Place the kale, avocado, grapefruit segments, and red onion in a large bowl and gently toss.

In a bowl, squeeze all the juice out of the membranes of the grapefruit. Add the mustard, garlic and salt and pepper to taste and whisk well. Slowly add the oil, whisking constantly to emulsify.

To serve, fold the dressing into the salad. Top with the cashews.

Note: Citrus segments without the peel and membrane are called supremes (A French culinary term). To supreme the grapefruit (or any other citrus fruit), first slice ¼ to ½ inch of the top and bottom. Place the fruit on its bottom following the curve and leaving as much fruit flesh as possible. Once all the peel and pith are gone, remove the segments by slicing into the flesh close to either side of the membranes, working all around the fruit. When removing the segments, hold the fruit over a bowl to catch any juices. In this case, save the remains to squeeze into the dressing for the salad..

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