Cow skin

Karen Alford, CBF field personnel in Togo

Support of the Offering for Global Missions allows Karen to serve in Vogan, Togo in a poverty-stricken country. Karen is trained as a Nurse Practitioner and provides much needed direct health care to locals and refugees. She also organizes community gardens and trains community members to raise rabbits as a source of protein. Karen’s ministry takes a holistic approach. See Karen’s recipe for Cow Skin. #offeringforglobalmissions #globalpoverty #becausepresencematters


Cow skin is eaten in a lot of West African countries so is not necessarily specific to Togo but it is a popular favorite here in Vogan. It is often added to soups and stews and is probably one of the more common meats found in street food and certainly you see it sold everywhere in the Friday market.  It is cheaper than regular meat so many people buy it instead.  I read somewhere that so much cow skin is consumed it actually hurts the leather industry in Togo and Nigeria.  It is not a great source of protein as it does not contain all the essential amino acids, but it is high in collagen and eating it is often prescribed as a medical therapy for arthritis.  It has to be boiled for hours and hours to get soft enough to cook and of course the hair has to be scraped off first, usually by roasting the skin over fire before boiling.