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Zimbabwe's beef bone recipe: Mabhonzo Emombe

Zimbabwe's beef bone recipe: Mabhonzo Emombe

Mabhonzo emombe, a traditional dish hailing from Zimbabwe, carries within it a profound cultural history that reflects the country's deep-rooted culinary heritage. This dish, also known as "Mabhonzo," is celebrated for its connection to communal gatherings and rituals. The name itself translates to "ox trotters" in English, referencing the main ingredient of the dish. Historically, Mabhonzo emombe was often prepared during significant occasions and ceremonies, such as weddings and communal feasts, serving as a symbol of abundance and unity. This culinary masterpiece embodies the essence of Zimbabwean culture, where food is not merely sustenance but a medium to honour traditions, celebrate togetherness, and pass down ancestral practices from one generation to the next.




1 kg of beef bones

3 Blended tomatoes

2 Bunches of spinach (to replace Kale)

2 Carrots

1 Bulb onion



1 Lemon


Pepper powder



  1. Wash all the ingredients well, beef bones should be washed separately from the others.

  2. Put bones into a cooking pan.

  3. Chop in onions, carrots and tomatoes.

  4. Add 2 teaspoons of garlic (grinned), salt (1/2 teaspoon) and a little pepper powder just for smell. Also lemon is essential to remove meaty smell.

  5. Boil slowly for about 4-6 hours using low heat. The longer it takes, the better the taste, note that we cook bones.

  6. While boiling the beef bones, wash and start to chop spinach into tiny pieces.

  7. Once boiling process has overtaken its duration, add in spinach with 10 minutes more on count.

Once the time ends, that is it we have our cuisine on table ready for lunch as well as dinner. Serve it warm with Sadza (the best known dish), rice or sweet potatoes.