Akwasi Brenya-Mensa’s vegan recipe for palaver sauce, or Ghanaian spinach stew | West African foods and drinks


As somebody who was typically compelled to eat their greens once they have been rising up, it’s stunning to me that I’ve all the time loved immediately’s dish. I believe it’s as a result of I believed the identify was cool, and even the phrase being mentioned appeared by some means capable of calm household tensions. Spinach remains to be not one thing I eat abundantly as an grownup, however right here, mixed with crimson palm oil, tomatoes, egusi (melon seed) and some different easy elements, it creates surprise.

Palaver sauce (Ghanaian spinach stew)

My favorite means of consuming palaver is out of an asanka, a conventional Ghanaian earthenware bowl.

Prep 20 min
Prepare dinner 1 hr 10 min
Serves 4-6

10g ginger, peeled
2-3 garlic cloves
(10g), peeled
1-2 scotch bonnet chillies
(20g), pith and seeds discarded, if you happen to want much less warmth
200ml vegetable oil
300g onions
, peeled and sliced
100g tomato puree
2 x 400g tins chopped tomatoes
, or recent tomatoes
2 tbsp all-purpose seasoning
– I exploit Dunn’s River, which yow will discover on the world meals aisle of many giant supermarkets
2 tbsp vegetable bouillon powder, or 2 vegetable bouillon cubes
4 plantains
egusi (AKA melon seeds) – search for them in specialist African meals shops and a few giant supermarkets, or on-line
100g spinach, washed and roughly chopped
1-2 avocados, peeled and stoned, flesh sliced or mashed, to serve

Put the ginger, garlic and chillies in a blender and blitz easy. Put the oil in a medium to giant pot on a medium warmth, then add the sliced onions and the ginger-garlic-chilli combination and saute, stirring, for about eight minutes, till smooth and translucent.

Add the tomato puree, cook dinner, stirring, for 3 to 5 minutes, then add the chopped tomatoes and convey to a mild boil. Flip down the warmth to a simmer, cook dinner, stirring often, for 20-25 minutes, till the stew thickens, then stir within the all-purpose seasoning and vegetable bouillon.

Whereas the stew is cooking, convey a pot of salted water to a boil, then peel the plantains, minimize them into 8-10cm chunks and boil for 25-Half-hour, till smooth.

Put the egusi in a blender with an equal weight of chilly water and whizz to a thick paste. Spoon dollops of this combination into the stew (see {photograph}), cowl the pot and depart to simmer untouched for about 20 minutes.

Add the chopped spinach to the pot, cowl once more and depart to cook dinner for a minute or two longer, simply till it wilts. Stir every little thing gently to mix, then season with salt to style and serve scorching with the boiled plantain and avocado alongside. Get pleasure from.

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