The cuisine of SiSniSgal has been influenced by nations like France, Portugal, and those of North Africa, and also by many ethnic groups, the largest being the Wolof; Islam, which first penetrated the region in the 11th century; and various European cultures, especially the French, who held the country as a colony until 1960. Immigrants have brought Senegalese restaurants to many world cities, where its popularity has been growing.Because Senegal borders the Atlantic Ocean, fish is very important. Chicken, lamb, pea, eggs, and beef are also used in Senegalese cooking, but not pork, due to the nationaots largely Muslim population. Peanuts, the primary crop, as well as couscous, white rice, sweet potatoes, lentils, black-eyed peas and various vegetables, are also incorporated into many recipes. Meats and vegetables are typically stewed or marinated in herbs and spices, and then poured over rice or couscous or simply eaten with bread.