Umngqusho is a South African dish based on samp and sugar beans, usually served with hard body chicken which is called umleqwa in isiXhosa. This dish is a staple meal for most South African families, referred to as isitambu by the Zulu people and umngqusho by the Xhosa people.

Coursesamp with sugar beans, butter, onions, potatoes, chili peppers
Place of originSouth Africa

How to pronounce umngqusho

Umngqusho is pronounced as “oom-nqoo-shoh”, for this word, you have to press your tongue on the roof of your mouth, just behind your teeth, to get the sound, the ‘q’ does not sound like a ‘k’ as it does in English.[1]


Soak the samp and sugar beans overnight in cold water. Drain and place in a heavy-based saucepan with 1 litre of water. Boil until soft and season with salt and pepper.[2]


Some of South Africa’s chefs usually add onion, garlic and spices to enhance the taste.[3] The Xhosa version, served with butter or fat, was apparently Nelson Mandela's favourite dish.[4]

See also


  1. "Noesj/Umqusho". Food24. 3 November 2009. Retrieved 13 August 2021.
  2. "Noesj/Umqusho". Food24. 3 November 2009. Retrieved 7 August 2021.
  3. "Umngqhosho | The Lazy Makoti". Retrieved 12 July 2021.
  4. "". Retrieved 28 April 2013.

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