You can learn a lot about a people by simply examining and tasting their cuisine.
Some people love spicy food, others will devour a plate full of a simple meal made with only tomatoes and onions acting as spice.
Others love their meat medium rare while others won’t take a bite off a meat bone if it’s not well-done, all these go to show that just like different ingredients and recipe make different meals humans too have different tastes and preferences which influence how they view and interact with the rest of the world.
Ghanaians love to eat and have a number of national and traditional dishes which they can’t get enough off and always go for a second helping, sometimes even third. (Flickr)
Almost all the 196 countries in the world today have a national dish of some sorts that they cherish and devour in equal measure; the same applies to Ghana.
Ghanaians love to eat and have a number of national and traditional dishes which they can’t get enough off and always go for a second helping, sometimes even third.
Here are nine mouth mothering dishes from Ghana you should try at least once before you die.
Ghanaian Jollof rice (MyWeku Tastes)
Originally from Senegal, Jollof is a pot dish of rice prepared with tomato sauce and served with meat or fish.
The rice soaks up the juicy flavours and turns orange when cooking, and is a national favourite that can be found in most restaurants or dished out by street vendors at affordable prices.
Jollof is so delicious that no one wants one country to claim its sole right and as a result, the dish normally stirs plenty of juicy debate online with different nationalities from West Africa all claiming the sole rights of the dish.
Waakye dish (commembraceuk.)
Waakye (pronounced wa-chayy) is another Ghanaian delicious dish that will leave you licking your fingers.
It is made from rice and beans and was originally a Northern dish, but it can now be found almost everywhere on the streets of Accra.
You can enjoy Waakye with other sides such as fried plantain, garri (grated cassava), spaghetti and avocado.
Banku and tilapia
Banku and grilled tilapia with hot pepper (Pulse.)
Ghanaians generally love fish and tilapia in particularly.
When you see fish being grilled on the streets of Accra it is most likely to be tilapia, a delicacy among Ghanaians, who spice then grill the succulent freshwater fish.
It goes hand in hand with banku, a Southern mix of fermented corn and cassava dough, and very hot pepper, diced tomatoes and onions.
Red red (The Spice Island)
This is one of the Ghanaian dishes that doesn’t use a lot of spice because the main taste comes from the ingredients it’s served with.
Red-red is a filling traditional dish that consists of cowpea beans boiled to make a broth, served with palm oil and soft, fried plantains.
It can also be dished up with garri to make it even heartier.
Fufu and goat light soup
Fufu with goat light soup (Pinterest)
Fufu is a staple food across West Africa but in Ghana, it is made by pounding a mixture of boiled cassava and plantains into a soft sticky paste to go along with aromatic and spicy tomato soup.
Tuo zaafi (Pulse)
Tuo Zaafi is similar to banku, although it is quite soft and less sticky, and is made by cooking corn dough and adding a little cassava.
What distinguishes Tuo Zaafi and makes it a popular meal nationwide is the nutritious and rare herbs used in making the accompanying soup, including dawadawa and ayoyo leaves.
Palm nut soup (Abe Nkwan)
Palm nut soup (Abe Nkwan) (Aftrad Village Kitchen)
Palm nut soup is a rich soup made from fresh palm nuts that is loved not just in Ghana but West Africa; Nigerians even have their own version which they call Banga soup.
The nuts are boiled, pounded to extract the juice from the nut’s meat, the process is without a doubt daunting but the end result is worth every drop of sweat.
Palm nut soup can be eaten with Omutuo (rice balls) or Kokonte.
Boiled yam or plantain with Kontomire stew
Kontomire stew and plantain (Aftrad Village Kitchen)
The highly nutritious Kontomire stew is made from boiled tender cocoyam leaves, salted fish and boiled eggs, and goes perfectly with boiled yams, plantains and avocado.
No list of traditional Ghanaian foods would be complete without mentioning this savoury side dish.
Kelewele is an instant favourite among anyone who tries it, even those who aren’t big fans of peppery food.
It is made by frying soft plantains that have been soaked in a medley of peppers, ginger and garlic.
It is usually sold as a snack or side dish all over Accra.