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Signature Dish: Pascaline Lisembe’s cassava

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    Pascaline Lisembe prepares cassava, which is one of her husband's favorite dishes, at her home in Portland. Lisembe is a refugee from the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and her husband is stuck in South Africa while she awaits hearings on her asylum status.

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    Lisembe chops onion for her cassava dish. Cassava is a stew made from the leaves of the cassava plant. In Lisemba’s village, it’s eaten with rice and either fish or dried monkey meat.

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    Lisembe unpackages frozen cassava leaves, which will be the main ingredient for the stew.

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    Lisembe prepares pape, also known as fufu, from cornmeal to be served with cassava, a stew made from the leaves of the cassava plant.

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    Lisembe finds a measuring spoon for palm oil as she prepares the meal.

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    Cassava leaves boil with eggplant, spring onion, green pepper and cabbage.

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    Lisembe chops green peppers for the dish.

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    Lisembe pours palm oil into the stew.

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    Pape, also known as fufu, cooks in a pot in Lisembe's Portland home. She has not seen her husband since she left South African in 2014.

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    Pap, known also as fufu, is eaten with the cassava stew.

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