Kenya at Cheese 2009
25 Jun 09
Kenya will be represented at the seventh Cheese, with herders and yogurt producers, a Terra Madre food community and a future Slow Food Presidium, describing their traditions, culture and how they make this exceptional product in Via Principi di Piemonte, the street dedicated to showcasing protection, promotion, consultation and support projects put into practice by the Slow Food Foundation for Biodiversity in Italy and abroad.
The name of the community – the same as the river that runs through their village of round mud-and-straw huts – is Terzoi, which means “white feather,” their traditional decoration.
They drink the milk of their cows (a cross between local breeds and zebus) and goats and also use it to make butter and an unusual kind of yogurt. The milk is poured into a long, narrow, hollow gourd and left to rest for at least three days. The whey is then drained, the container closed and shook regularly. When the yogurt is ready, they add the ash from a local tree called cromwo, which has antiseptic properties, gives an aromatic note to the flavor and colors the yogurt a distinctive pale-gray.
Four representatives from this community – soon to be a Slow Food Presidium – will be in Italy to take a training course on animal and milk hygiene, and will be recounting their ancient culture at Cheese.
West Pokot, west Kenya