Omena – a natural way to get your calcium

Sardines, anchovies and other small fish are chock full of calcium because they are small enough for you to eat them in their entirety.


Omena (omena in, Luo, dagaa in Swahili, mukene in Luganda) is a small silvery sardine-like fish that affords the same nutritious advantages.

Some people eat them with tea in the morning, and others have them with Ugali and Sukuma Wiki (collard greens) for lunch or dinner. Whatever your option, just remember that they are good for you, and, cooked right, very tasty.


  • Two cups of omena
  • Two large tomatoes
  • One large onion
  • Cooking oil
  • Salt
  • Water
  • Milk or coconut cream
  • Freshly ground garlic


  1. Boil water the add fish into it.
  2. Let the omena boil for 30 minutes to rid them of any dirt and scales they might have.
  3. Do not drain the water. Let the dirt settle at the bottom of the sufuria (sauce pan), then carefully scoop out the fish.
  4. Deep fry the fish for about two or three minutes or until they begin to brown.
  5. Put them in a bowl lined with paper towels to absorb the extra oil. This will also prevent breaking when they are being stewed.
  6. Heat oil in a pan and add the chopped onions.
  7. Follow this with freshly ground garlic and salt.
  8. Cook for about three to five minutes in low heat while stirring.
  9. Add chopped tomatoes and let them cook in the same low heat until ready. Stir to make thick paste. If you are using any spices, add them at this point.
  10. Add the deep fried omena to the mixture and stir gently.
  11. Add either half a cup of hot water or milk or even coconut cream.
  12. Let them simmer for about 10 minutes.

Cooking time: 50 minute(s)

Number of servings (yield): 4

Source: African Cook


5 Comments Add yours

  1. wdl112 says:

    Your entire body desires calcium for your muscles to act plus for nerves to move messages between your brain and each one body part. Furthermore, calcium is commonly used to aid blood vessels move blood around the body to be able to help release hormones and enzymes which affect nearly all function in the body.

  2. Julius Ndungu Mwangi says:

    Yer,crear instruction.

  3. Juma says:

    I like this recipe. Kales (Sukuma Wiki) cooks faster and are softer than collard greens.

  4. thisisyourday says:

    Great article! I am going to try this recipe. Thanks.

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