This is a party favourite! I find that making my own chips allows me to keep things healthy and it is also a cheap and cheerful way to make a quick snack before I sit down to watch SATC re runs with my friends :-). I like to serve my chips with an array of dips depending on the company but a general favourite is the Waakye Leaf vegetarian “shito” chilli sauce.
A pack of corn tortillas or some Roti (available in supermarkets)
- 3tbsp Olive oil
1. Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6.
2. Brush both sides of the tortillas with the oil and then cut into triangles with scissors.
3. Spread over 2 large baking trays and bake for 7 minutes.
4. Remove, sprinkle with salt and pepper and set aside.
5. Serve with Waakye Leaf vegetarian “shito” chilli sauce and sour cream and chive or guacamole dips on the side.
Mmmm…..“Chinchinga” is another one of many popular street foods in Ghana. It always makes me homesick and nostalgic whenever I make it for my friends and family. The smell of the suya seasoning on the meat against the hot grill evokes pleasant memories of the busy streets of Accra and the various socialising “spots” where people just go to listen to great African music and enjoy their chilled favourite beer or soft drink while they order countless skewers of authentic chinchinga from a vendor who seems to have strategically situated his open fire grill in just the right place for the smell and display of assorted grilled meats to entice his customers till they succumb to the good stuff lol!
Well, here’s my take on the “good stuff” so try it and you may very well not have to go to Ghana to try chinchinga. Although, you might miss the accompanying drama between the Chinchinga vendor and his customers if you didn’t.
1. Blend the ginger, garlic, onion, stock cube seasoning with the oil to form a smooth paste.
2. Add the paste to the chicken and marinate for about an hour.
3. Skewer the seasoned chicken pieces alternating with the peppers and onions and set aside.
4. Combine all the ingredients for the suya seasoning and mix together.
5. Once the suya seasoning is ready, sprinkle some of it on the skewered chicken and grill till it is cooked and browned both sides.
6. Remove from the heat and sprinkle a bit more of the suya powder on it and serve.
Jollof rice is another favorite and I can only describe it as a very aromatic and flavoursome one pot rice meal, quite similar to the Cajun Jambalaya. As with most African recipes, there’s a lot of room for improvisation, so you can have Jollof on its own as part of a vegetarian meal or with grilled meats. You can also prepare a chicken or meat version of Jollof rice. Here is my version of the Ghanaian plain Jollof rice for you to try.
- 3 – 4 cups or 600g basmati rice
- 5 to10 fl.oz olive oil (you may use another type of oil if you choose)
- 2 heaped tbsp tomato puree
- 1 onion chopped
- 2 medium sized onions
- 2 canned plum tomatoes (or Passata)
- 2 fat cloves of garlic
- A small piece of ginger
- 4 scotch bonnet chilies (reduce if you don’t like it spicy)
- 1 stock cube (either vegetarian or otherwise)
- 1 Maggie cube (optional)
- Dried mixed herbs
- 1 bay leaf
- Salt to taste
1. Blend the ginger, garlic, chilies, canned tomatoes and two onions and set aside for later.
2. Heat oil in a non-stick pan and fry the chopped onions till soft and golden brown then add the tomato puree and cook for a further 3-4 minutes.
3. Add the blended tomato and onion mixture from earlier and leave to cook through till the tomato mixture has lost its raw taste and the oil is visible at the top.
4. Add the stock and Maggie cubes, bay leaf and a sprinkle of the mixed herbs.
5. Leave to simmer for about 3 minutes while you rinse the rice to remove excess starch.
6. When rice is rinsed, add to the sauce stirring it to make sure nothing is sticks to the bottom.
7. Now add 2 cups of water to the rice and sauce mix and stir, add salt to taste and cook till the water is almost evaporated.
8. Now, cover and simmer on a low heat till rice is fully cooked.
9. Serve with fried plantain and a crisp green leaf salad on the side.
Yam balls are a common snack in Ghana and also my personal favourite – as it brings back a lot childhood memories. The joys of biting into the crisp shell of my mother’s freshly fried yam balls with a bit of shito chilli sauce on the side, is incomparable!
Like most African recipes, there is plenty of room for improvisation so you have the freedom to adjust the flavours, seasonings or even add a filling if you wish. At Waakye leaf we make special yam balls with a variety of fillings such us minced meat and prawns. Here is my take on yam balls…I dare you to make it even better and when you do, I would love to taste it first!
- 1kg Yam
- Water to boil
- Salt to taste
- 100 gms butter
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 2 spring onions finely chopped (optional)
- 1/2 tbsp, coriander, finely chopped (optional)
- 1/2 tsp paprika
- 1 egg yolk (keep the egg white)
- 1 egg (add the remaining egg white and whisk into a mixture)
- Pinch of ground white pepper
- Pinch salt
- Breadcrumbs (preferably panko breadcrumbs)
1. Peel and cut the yam into cubes.
2. Cover in pot with water and season with salt.
3. Boil till soft and then drain out the water.
4. While it is still hot mash the yam together with the butter, egg yolk, garlic powder, white pepper, paprika, adding salt if necessary. Add the finely chopped spring onions and coriander if desired.
5. Roll into small balls and dip into the whisked egg mixture.
6. Spread the breadcrumbs on a plate and roll the balls on it, coating it evenly.
7. Now heat oil in a deep fryer, wok or large saucepan to 180°C. Cook them for around 3 minutes until they rise to the top and are golden brown and crisp.
8. Drain the balls on kitchen paper, then place in a warm oven while you cook the remaining balls.
9. Serve this on a platter with some Waakye Leaf Shito and/or freshly ground “pepe” (blended mixture of scotch bonnet, tomatoes and onions with a pinch of salt to taste).