Food Ekasi

How to cook Isijingi (updated version)

It’s quite interesting and delightful when as a blogger/writer you get recognition, whether this comes in a form of a compliment or query. This time I received corrections about this blog from the comments sections, on my article about Isijingi. A reader called Mbuyazi (from his/her username) gave me a bit of history about this dish called Isijingi and corrected my grammar on my vernac. I will not dilute Mbuyazi’s comment so I will copy and paste as is…

Isijingi is a Zulu term for the thick porridge that is prepared by mixing a Pumpking and Maize meal.

In Zimbabwe it is called ISIJEZA only in Matabeleland, but in other places like Mashonaland they use the term INOPI.

Some in Bulawayo now use this term “inopi”, although it is not a Ndebele/Zulu term.


This is a dish that is mostly prepared by the Nguni people of Southern Africa, in RSA it is called Isijingi in Zulu and Isijeza and/or iNopi in Zimbabwe.

It’s like a soft porridge but you can serve it any time of the day.


Pumpkin also known as Ibhece in IsiZulu


Sugar – 5 tablespoons [depends on your tolerance]


Cooking Steps:

Firstly you need to prepare your pumpkin .Peal it off, slice &/or dice ,place in a pot and pour enough water so the pumpking is generously covered.

Add sugar and boil until its well cooked, then add maize-meal bit by bit stirring continuously but take care not to make a thick mixture. In other words stop pouring maize-meal when the mixture is about right.

You can cook for about 45min ,stirring occasionally.

In Zimbabwe they eat it with peanut butter, as mentioned earlier Isijingi is like soft porridge.


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About Sihle Mgobozi

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