Now that we’ve discovered Ghana, let us discover its food! Here are 6 Ghanaian recipes you won’t get enough of. It’s a given, take it from our marble finders!
Marble Dish #1: Jolof Rice
No party or celebration in Ghana can be deemed complete without a portion of Jolof Rice. Here’s why and how you can DIY.
- ¼ cup white rice
- 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken
- 1 medium-sized onion (chopped)
- 2 teaspoons vegetable oil
- 6 ounces tomato paste
- If only counting the ingredients brought some water to your mouth, then grab a saucepan, fry the rice and the onion on low heat until the onion becomes translucent. Don’t forget to cover the saucepan with a lid!
- Boil the chicken and cut it into small cubes and throw them into the pot.
- Pour the tomato paste and the chicken soup (successively, not all at once) and let the mixture simmer.
- Cover the pot and turn the heat down to low.
- Cook over low heat until the rice is soft and the liquid is fully absorbed (around 25 minutes).
Marble Dish #2: Kenkey (Ground Cornmeal)
This is a unique dish indeed, and if you have no idea what it tastes like, perhaps you can hardly wait to take a bite.
- 8 cups cornmeal Cornhusks (or banana leaves)
- 1 tablespoon vinegar
- 1 cup water
- In large pot, mix the cornmeal with just enough water to form a homogenous mass.
- Cover the pot with a cloth and let it sit in a warm place for about 6 hours.
- Pour vinegar over the cornmeal and mix.
- Wash your hands properly with non-perfumed soap and knead the dough formed in the previous stages until all the ingredients are thoroughly combined and a little stiffened. Split the dough in half.
- In a large pot bring water to a boil. Put half of the dough into the water and cook for 10 minutes stirring continuously and vigorously. Remove from heat.
- Now, mix the cooked and the uncooked dough and stir well to combine.
- Divide the mixture into serving sizes and wrap them in banana leaves (if not available, you can use aluminum foil).
- Put the wrapped pieces on a wire rack on top of a large pot with water.
- Bring the water to a boil and steam the wrapped cornmeal dough for 1-3 hours. Ready!
Marble Dish #3: Oto (or Yam and Eggs)
This may be a good idea for breakfast. If you’re looking for ways to fiber up your diet, Oto comes in handy. Plus, it’s easy to cook and ready in a jiffy!
- 2 cups mashed yams
- 2 tablespoons grated onions (you will cry a little, but it’s worth it)
- ½ cup palm oil
- 1 ripe, peeled tomato
- 6 hard-boiled eggs
- Salt and pepper (to taste)
- Boil the yams and mash smoothly with a fork
- In a saucepan, make a sauce with palm oil and onion, plus salt and pepper to taste. When the onion becomes golden. Add the tomato sauce, mix to combine and remove from heat.
- Cut 2 of the boiled eggs in half and remove the yolks. Add them to the sauce, mash and stir until combined.
- Pour this mixture over the mashed yams and mix well until it all becomes even in colour.
- Breakfast is ready! Transfer everything into a bowl and use the rest of the eggs to decorate the dish.
Marble Dish #4: Kelewele (Fried Plantains)
Craving for something really hot and spicy that will make you melt and jump with joy after? This is your (and my) favourite dish.
- 6 ripe plantains
- 1 teaspoon ginger powder
- ½ teaspoon ground red pepper
- 3 cups oil (or shortening)
- 2 tablespoons water
- Peel and cut the plantain diagonally into ½-inch pieces. Make sure you remove all the woody parts from the centre of the fruit.
- Mix red pepper, ginger and salt well in a mixing bowl until fully combined.
- Drop the plantain slices into the spicy mix to coat them.
- In a big skillet, warm up oil and fry the coated plantain until it turns golden-brown.
Marble Dish #5: Kentumere (Fish and Spinach in Tomatoes)
This is a light yet nutritious dish, full of essential omega-3s and 6s to keep your brain young and well functioning. Every healthy diet should include these ingredients:
- 1 cup chopped onions
- 1 cup tomatoes
- 1 cup palm oil
- 4 cups fresh spinach (chopped)
- 1 cup kippered herring
- 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- Pour the palm oil in a sizeable skillet and heat it. Add salt and pepper to taste and the chopped onions. At this stage you can mash the tomatoes, mix them with the other ingredients, and add this whole mix over the onions. Stir!
- Add the fish and cook over medium-high heat for 15 minutes. This is just about enough time for the fish to become tender. Remove from heat and serve with rice or plantain.
Marble Dish #6: Light Soup with Corn Fufu
‘No lunch is a proper lunch without a soup’, my grandmother used to say. Well, years later I started to understand why and I warmly recommend this easy-to-make, yummy soup.
- 4 cups water
- 2 cups cornmeal
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 4 large tomatoes
- 2 medium-sized onions
- 3 garlic cloves
- 2 chili peppers (or more, depending on how hot you want it to be)
- 1 ginger root
- Whole-chicken soup (chop the chicken into pieces and let your taste rule and unleash your imagination! You can add any vegetables you like and use any kind of meat, including fish, either fresh or smoked.)
- Salt and pepper to taste
- A small handful of fresh torn basil
- Bring water to a boil over medium-high heat in a large saucepan. Add salt. When it started to boil, remove one cup of water and set it aside.
- Add in the cornmeal and reduce heat. Pour the cornmeal into the water slowly, whisking constantly as you add it. Once the whole amount of cornmeal has been added, take a wooden spoon and continue to stir the mix and turn the heat to low.
- Stir vigorously until the cornmeal thickens. If you notice any lumps forming, remove the saucepan from heat temporarily to stir out the lumps. As the cornmeal warms up, the starch will thicken the mixture. You’ll be able to notice this in 5-10 minutes.
- 4. When it starts smelling like roasted corn, it means your fufu is ready.
- Put all the ingredients into a large pot and pour 1.5 litres of water. Boil over high heat for about 20 minutes. After 20 minutes, remove the tomatoes, onion, garlic, chili and ginger.
- Blend the tomatoes, onion, garlic and hot chili together and then through them back in. Cooking time for chicken may vary depending on the quantity.
- Stab the chicken with a fork to check if it’s tender enough. When it becomes tender, reduce the heat and add in the basil. Stir to incorporate and let it simmer for a few more minutes to allow the basil to flavour up the soup.
This delicious Ghanaian dish is traditionally served with the hand, by dipping the fufu into the soup. Of course, for those of you who are not so keen on eating with their hands (I know for sure I’m not), you can use a spoon. Enjoy!
If this article has stimulated your salivating glands, well then, stay tuned for more! Have fun trying out any of these delicious recipes and share them with your friends!