I was warned that Moussa is a very good cook, but that he has a penchant for using "organ meat", a first for this project, I must say. So it is no surprise to see what (as a veterinarian, not as a consumer) I recognize as chicken stomachs, also known as gizzards in proper English. They are being marinated in oil, vinegar, onions, garlic and salt.
While I get a complete workshop in how to prepare Burkinese food, Moussa tells me more about his childhood. While he is the oldest son of a large family, he was raised by his great-grandmother, "the woman who has loved me most in life".
"She always gave me everything, we were so attached, that when I slept, she slept. When I awoke, she got up as well!"
But all good things come to an end...in his case, when his great-grandmother died, at the ripe old age of 106. He found it hard to cope without her.
By this time I have not only learnt how to marinate gizzards, but lamb as well. And how to fry plantain, aloko.
I have to say, the gizzards are pretty tasty, and I appreciate their chewiness. The plantains are also good, but not new to me, as the gizzards are and the Lamb with Peanut Sauce. I knew there were countries in Africa where peanutsauce was popular (from a favorite "graphic novel", Aya de Youpogon, which plays in Cote d'Ivoire, Burkina Faso's relatively rich neighbour).
After a surprisingly delicious meal, it's time for tea. This involves a gunpowder tea, mint leaves, a tiny tea kettle and the pouring of tea from great heights, dozens of times! The end result is a very strong "men's tea". It's like a stiff drink, and keeps some people up all night. Moussa tells me, in Burkina Faso the men get excited and call out: "Ataya, ataya!" when the tea is brought out. I can imagine the scene, somehow.
For those who are adventurous and can find gizzards at their local butcher: here is the very simple recipe.