The Africa Cookbook

by Jessica B. Harris

There have been a number of cookbooks that shine a light on non-Western cuisine, but none more encyclopedic in its contents than Jessica B. Harris’ The Africa Cookbook: Tastes of a Continent. A scholar by trade, Harris recounts the twenty-five years of research where she traveled, interviewed, uncovered and tested hundreds of recipes to showcase the breadth of African food, highlighting not only the continental but regional diversity in the recipes that she imparts. In her words, Harris wished to display African hospitality, a tradition that spans beyond national and international divides to produce a common attribute. 

Written in 1998, The Africa Cookbook shares more than just recipes from the continent; it tells stories of the people Harris met while she was researching the book. Although the recipes are vastly different in country of origin, flavors and ingredients, they show that food is a unifying force that brings people together. 

The Africa Cookbook cover