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Why West African Cuisine is Having a Moment in the US Food Scene                        

Long overlooked in the US culinary landscape, West African cuisine suddenly seems to be the enticing “new kid” on the block. With television and social media elevating African chefs to celebrity status, restaurants and cookbooks are proliferating, and excitement is taking hold across the country. Some, like Fatou Ouattara, a native of Ivory Coast, are using the restaurant format to serve dishes like queue de boeuf (oxtail stew) and mafe (peanut stew). Senegal-born Pierre Thiam, for example, now has two New York City locations of his fast-casual concept Teranga, and his fourth and newest cookbook, “Simply West African: Easy, Joyful Recipe for Every Kitchen,” was released in September 2023. Yewande Komolafe is known in food-writing circles as one of the industry’s finest recipe developers. No surprise then that her debut cookbook, “My Everyday Lagos,” is full of enticing recipes that work reliably in the home kitchen.