While Ghana and Nigeria will continue to be at loggerheads in the Jollof Wars, we would never miss the opportunity to wish Ghanaians a Happy 60th Independence Day.
Happy National Day Ghana!
Today, on the anniversary of its independence, we celebrate this culturally rich, unique nation with what else, FOOD!
We present to you a quick rundown of some of our favourite Ghanaian meals.
Fun Fact: Ghana is the first black African country south of the Sahara to achieve independence from colonial rule. Its nationalist and Pan-African leader, Kwame Nkrumah, said, “Our independence is meaningless unless it is linked up with the total liberation of the African continent.”
In no particular order:
Imagine my surprise when I found out that it is actually pronounced as ‘Wa Chi’, I am still amazed. This is rice cooked with coconut, an indigenous leaf and beans such as Congo, black eyed or kidney beans.The leaf is what give is the purple-brown colour.
It can be very spicy and is usually eaten with egg, fried fish, spaghetti, fried chicken, avocado among other side dishes. Waakye is traditionally a Northern dish but it has found its way all around the country. Go Runtown!
Banku and Tilapia
This is a Southern Ghanaian delicacy now available at almost every joint. Freshwater fish is spiced and then grilled, and is usually complemented by Banku, a mix of fermented corn and cassava dough, and very hot pepper, diced tomatoes and onions. On festive occasions, Okra or Eggplant stew might be thrown into the mix to switch it up.
Kenkey and Fried fish
Kenkey is another corn-based staple that is very similar to banku, but it is made by moulding fermented corn dough into balls and wrapping them around drying corn leaves, before it is boiled. The meal is served with hot pepper sauce, fried crabs, octopus or fish and is a delicacy of the people of Accra.
Now don’t tun away because it is beans, Red-red is actually very filling. It is a traditional dish that’s made with cowpea beans boiled with palm oil and then served with soft, fried plantains (dodo to Nigerians), Prawns, or Fish. The main taste comes from the ingredients it’s served with – it can also be dished with garri.
Fufu and Goat Light soup
This is one meal that is sure to work wonders! Fufu is also called “Eat and Sleep” in several parts of West Africa because of the heavy aftermath of consuming this dish. It is the staple dish of the Akan people and is made by pounding a mixture of boiled cassava and plantains into a soft sticky paste to go along with the goat meat light soup aka Nkakra. The dish is attributed to the Ashanti, Brong Ahafo and Eastern regions.
Yeah, we grudgingly put that in. The dish is originally from Senegal and has caused a lot of debate online, trust me the Nigeria – Ghana Jollof Wars erupts in a flash. It is made from rice and prepared with tomato sauce which this gives it the orange colour. The dish can be served with meat, chicken or fish, and can be found in most restaurants.
These are kebabs and in Nigeria, it is called Suya. This is arguably the most popular street food/appetizer/snack in the whole of West Africa albeit its many names. Chichinga is commonly made from a variety of protein sources such as liver, beef, chicken, lamb, or goat.
Boiled yam or plantain with Kontomire stew
The Kontomire/Palava stew is said to be highly nutritious as it is made from boiled tender cocoyam leaves, salted fish and boiled eggs. It is usually paired with boiled yams, plantains or avocado and whichever one you prefer, be ready for this flavour packed dish.
This is a favourite among a lot of Ghanaians, even those who don’t like peppery/spicy food. Kelewele is sold as a snack or side dish all over Accra and it is made by frying soft plantains that have been soaked in peppers, ginger and garlic. The aroma is crisp and strong, while the pleasant plantain adds some sweetness.
Between this soup and Okra soup, we can’t seem to decide Ghanaians favourite. They have come up with a wide variety of groundnut soups and using Chicken, Lamb, Mutton, Goat, Beef, Fish or Vegetables. At first look groundnut soup might look like a spicy curry, it is anything but curry and it gets its bright colour from groundnut and tomatoes.
Have you been to Ghana, what meal did you enjoy there? Kindly share with us in the comment section.