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Zimbabwe's Mazondo: Cows Hooves

Zimbabwe's Mazondo: Cows Hooves


Mazondo is a delicacy that has a strong connection to Zimbabwe's culinary tradition. This filling and flavourful treat is made from cow hooves, and it has a history entwined with Zimbabwe's diverse cultural heritage.

The indigenous inhabitants of Zimbabwe, who cleverly used every part of the animal to reduce waste, are where Mazondo first originated. Cow hooves are used in food, which shows how resourceful and resilient these societies are. Mazondo became a well-liked meal over time, adored for both its historical value and its hearty flavours and soothing features.

Known for its distinctive flavour combination and cultural importance, this meal has also become more well-known outside of Zimbabwe.

Preparation Time

4 hour and 20 minutes



4-6 cow hooves (cleaned and cut into pieces)

2 onions (chopped)

2-3 tomatoes (chopped)

2-3 cloves of garlic (minced)

1-2 teaspoons of curry powder

1-2 teaspoons of paprika

1-2 teaspoons of cayenne pepper 

Salt and pepper 

2-3 tablespoons of vegetable oil


Fresh cilantro or parsley 


  • Clean the cow hooves thoroughly, removing any dirt or debris. Or scrape them with a knife and wash them several times.
  • Place the cleaned cow hooves in a large pot and cover them with water. Bring the water to a boil and let it simmer for about 10 minutes, drain and set aside.
  • In a separate large pot, heat the vegetable oil over medium heat. Add the chopped onions and garlic and sauté until they become translucent and fragrant.
  • Add the chopped tomatoes to the pot and continue to cook for a few minutes.
  • Stir in the curry powder, paprika, cayenne pepper, salt, and pepper. Mix well to combine the spices with the tomato mixture.
  • Add the parboiled cow hooves to the pot and stir to coat them with the tomato and spice mixture.
  • Pour in enough water to cover the hooves, and then bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer, cover the pot, and let it cook for about 3 hours.
  • Taste and adjust the seasoning as necessary, adding more salt, pepper, or spices to suit your taste.
  • Once the cow hooves are tender and the sauce has thickened to your liking, remove the pot from heat.
  • Garnished with fresh cilantro or parsley and serve.