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How to prepare Seswaa, Botswana National Dish

How to prepare Seswaa, Botswana National Dish

The Republic of Botswana is a landlocked Southern African country that shares a border with Namibia, Zambia, Zimbabwe, and South Africa.

Almost the geographic size of France, Botswana is mostly flat with a large portion of it occupied by the Kalahari Desert.

In Botswana, Seswaa is recognized as the country’s national dish.

Seswaa is basically slow-cooked beef (on bones) with water, salt, pepper, and onions.


Traidtionally, Seswaa is cooked on a three-legged pot over an open fire and the meal is usually served at big event.

The intriguing thing about cooking seswaa is that this dish is actually prepared by men and not women according to tradition and although the recipe is indigenous to Botswana, other neighboring countries have adopted the meal due to its unique flavor.

Without wasting your time, here’s a breakdown of the recipe

Also read: How to Make Dibi, a Senegalese street food

Ingredients used in preparing seswaa

  • Beef (on bone)
  • tsp salt
  • tsp pepper
  • bay leaves
  • onions
  • water


  1. Cut the beef into large chunks, put in the pot, add water, salt, onions, pepper, bay leaves and allow to cook for about 5 hours.
  2. If the beef easily falls off the bone, then it is tender enough to bring down from the fire.
  3. When cool, put the beef in a mortar and pound until it looks like it’s pulled. This can also be done using two forks to shred the beef apart.
  4. When done, seswaa can be served with cornmeal as a compliment.
source: dreamstime


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