Kigali – The city of meatballs


When you get to Kigali, one thing you can not help but notice are the ubiquitous  meatballs.

Walk into any shop , they may not have airtime or sugar or know the way to the hotel opposite them , but they will have meatballs. Go to any fuel station , prices may be high , fuel may be low, service may be poor, bug notes may not be understood, english may not be understood, but there will be meat balls. Go to any restaurant, chips may be late , beans may be the only thing on the menu , the music may be lousy or they have no beer available, but there will be meatballs. Even the unofficial vendors on the streets who hide in street corners when they see the police coming seem to always have an inexhuastible supply if meatballs. The meatball rage is so huge that the Rwanda Bureau of Standards issued an warning against consuming meatballs from unverified sources : ” But due to the growing number of young people  who sell meatballs and the alike on the street, it is advisable for those who like them to bear in mind that they are suspicious because in most cases nobody knows where the meat comes from.”

The Kigali residents really do love their meat……balls. And they really do come in all sizes. Well the shape is always the same., round or oval. But the spices and seasoning do vary . Depending on the restaurant, shop , petrol station or hotel you order for this underground favorite, you will be surprised , pleasantly or otherwise. Most of the meatballs are mildly hot so that your tongue is not set on fire. You will find those made out of finely ground meat <quite rare> , others of the rough stuff. Some seem to have been reheated .  Most are usually chopped onions and meat rolled together and dumped in oil. Yet you can be sure that there will be more meat than onions in there. Goat and Cow are rumored to be the main sources of the meat.

All the Kigali Meatballs are not shy with the meat. They lump that stuff in there and dare you to complain about them being miserly. The meatballs are usually big enough to fill the fist of Iron Man and oily enough to keep his joints moving. The things are also darn cheap. If you are a meatball lover , then Kigali is the town for you


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