Posted by: devonhamilton | September 3, 2010

Ghanaian Cuisine

After eating that soup yesterday I did a bit more research on Ghanaian cuisine. From what I have been told, I can expect to eat a lot of eggs, bread, instant Nescafe, rice, chicken, fish, and beans. There’s also restaurants in the towns where I will be staying (see my new “Where I’m staying” tab). Food isn’t something I am worried about. Ghanaian cuisine uses a lot of onions and tomatoes. Tomatoes I don’t enjoy raw but I like them cooked (this seems to confuse people, but they taste totally different!). When I helped Amanda make soup yesterday my job was grinding the tomatoes, which ended up forming the soup broth.

Some Ghanaian foods include (courtesy of GhanaWeb):

Fufu: Conventional west African fufu is made by boiling such starchy foods as cassava, yam, plantain or rice, then pounding them into a glutinous mass, usually in a giant, wooden mortar and pestle.

Kenkey: Fermented maize meal traditionally prepared by boiling balls of mixed portions of fermented cooked maize meal and raw maize dough wrapped in cornhusk. Another type called FANTI KENKEY, which is popular in the central and western regions of Ghana, is similarly prepared but wrapped in leaves cut from the plantain/banana tree. These are able to keep for a few days to a week. Can also be taken as pulp similar to oatmeal or holicks.

Jollof Rice: Rice cooked in a preparation of beef or chicken stew.

Banku: Fermented corn/cassava dough mixed proportionally and cooked in hot water into a smooth whitish consistent paste. Served with soup, stew or a pepper sauce with fish.

Since I enjoy cooking I’ve decided to try some Ghanaian recipes next week. I have decided I am going to try to make fufu with groundnut soup (see picture below). After making the fufu (kind of like a dumpling) you place it in the centre of the bowl (“like an island”) with the soup around it. I have also been told about a few Ghanaian restaurants in Toronto that I would like to try before I leave.

The information we have received says that it is not advisable to travel to Ghana if you have a nut or shellfish allergy, since these ingredients seem to find their way into a great number of Ghanaian dishes (in broths, etc). Another difficulty in vegetarianism, as the concept is not known there and people will not understand why you do not wish to eat meat. That being said, I did go to Nemaska with a vegetarian and she also needed to be “flexible” in order to make sure she was getting all her protein, etc. When you don’t have too many options you take what you can get, I guess!

Just received the go-ahead today to get my visa. One month to go!

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