Meanings and taboos in traditional gastronomy of Maasai communities in Kajiado County, Kenya

The article analyses food traditions among the Maasai of Kajiado County. It explores them on the basis of an ethnographic research conducted between 2017 and 2018. In particular, it investigates the cultural meanings and taboos associated with blood, meat and milk: key elements in the traditional Maasai diet. In a context of development studies interested in fostering nutrition transition among indigenous people, the article advocates for an approach to food study that does not focus only on the nutritional aspect of food but encompasses the analysis of cultural meaning and taboos in order to fully appreciate the social role played by traditional foodways in improving social cohesion.