The first part of our blog post on Ghana we already talked about family and friends in this beautiful West African country. In this blog post we want to talk about Christmas at our Muslim, Ghanaian family in Kumasi and with which food we were spoiled here.
Let's celebrate Christmas in Kumasi
Kumasi is the second largest city in Ghana, located in the southern inland and is the capital of the Ashanti region. It is a bustling and chaotic city with lots of traffic, which you have to take into account if you want to arrive on time. Compared to Accra, it is more rural here and we had the impression that you can get closer to Ghanaian culture here.
In Kumasi we spent Christmas and it was so completely different from what we are used to at home. Since this part of our family is Muslim, we actually didn't celebrate Christmas and if we are honest, we didn't really feel like celebrating Christmas at all. Instead we concentrated on spending the day with activities and cooking together. Very different and still very nice.
In the morning we went on a pilgrimage to the Kejetia market in the center of Kumasi, because Anna wanted to see it. We were accompanied by Julia, Emil and Emil's favourite uncle in Ghana Dudu, who could show us all the central corners of the market and also made sure that we didn't get lost in the bustle. The Kejetia market makes every buyer's heart beat faster, because here you probably find anything you need. Supposedly it is also the biggest open-air market in West Africa, but definitely the biggest market in Ghana. Even though we did not buy anything, we were full of impressions that will surely accompany us for a long time. Our highlight was the basket full of live chickens, which was carried on the head.
Afterwards we went to Manhyia Palace, which is now a museum and also the seat of the Asantehene of Asanteman. We liked best the beautiful garden there, where we could have spent half the day. Emil was especially impressed by the water feature and the peace bell.
After so many impressions our stomachs were already hanging at half past seven, so we stopped at a street food stand. There we had - like almost all the time in Ghana - one of our favourite meals: Yam root - this time in grilled form and with peanuts. A sauce would have been great, but was not available.
We celebrated Christmas Eve quite spectacularly with spaghetti in tomato sauce and green pesto under grated parmesan. But you can imagine that after one month in Africa this meal was a real feast for us.
culinary delights from Ghana
Apart from that we mainly enjoyed the food in Kumasi and got to know the local cuisine. Our Ghanaian mother Bilkis cooked us very tasty traditional food. But we cheated a little bit, because she made us a vegetarian version - usually the dishes are with fish or meat. Here are our absolute favourite dishes in Ghana:
Fufu or also Foufou
Fufu was the first traditional dish we got to know in Ghana and that is how our love for the yam root was awakened. In any case it can be considered a big part of the West African cuisine. It is a firm and starchy porridge made from yams (sometimes also from cassava) and plantains. Especially in Ghana and Nigeria we got to know it.
Yam - delicious in every form
As already revealed, we fell in love with the yam root in particular. It tastes great in fufu, but even better we find the fried version, which is an excellent and just as tasty substitute for the potato fries at home.
Tuo Zaafi - African semolina
But our absolute favourite was Tuo Zaafi with Ayoyo soup. It can best be described as the firm semolina from Ghana and the Ayoyo soup comes closest to spinach porridge, but is actually cassava leaves. This is unbeatable in combination with a spicy tomato sauce (usually with fish or meat).
You got hungry now, too? Then you should either plan at trip to Ghana or we will try to cook the dishes together in Hamburg. It is up to you! With this in mind: Bon appetit!