Friday, 28 August 2015

Suya Grilled Sardines, Octopus and Shrimps

Seafood is always a feature in Ghanaian meals, particularly with dishes native to tribes that live along the coast such as the Ga's and Fante's. A good Ga meal will be some hot soft Ga Kenkey with fried fish, shrimps, meko (scotch bonnet salsa) and shito. Most of the time, the fish is fried to help preserve it for longer but there is also a favourite method which takes the fish to a whole new level. Grilling, yes charcoal grilled fish is the ultimate process which takes the fish and Kenkey dish to a another level. When grilling, Ghanaians love to marinate with these spices: suya, onions, ginger and garlic, at least one of these would feature in the marinade. In Ghana we would charcoal grill the fish, this brings another dimension to the fish, the charred spice on the fish is just so yummy. Pair it with some meko and you'll be in heaven. 
I wanted to create this goodness with some fresh sardines and seafood I bought from the Asian market the other day. So I put all the lovely spices together and used this marinate the fish and seafood. As I didn't have a charcoal grill at the time, I used a combination of oven baking and grilling to achieve a similar effect. It came out really well. So below is the recipe, try it out and don't forget to leave a feedback.

  • 4 Medium Size Sardines (gutted and cleaned)
  • 6 Small Octopus (cleaned)
  • 10 Shrimps (hard shell shrimps)
  • 2 Tbsp Suya (Kyinkyinga) Powder 
  • 1 Tsp Black Pepper
  • 1 Medium Size Onion (sliced)
  • 3 Cloves of Garlic (grated)
  • Thumb Size Fresh Finger (grated)
  • 1 Tsp Crayfish Powder or Maggie Cube
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 Tbsp Olive Oil 

1. Cut slits on both sides of the sardines and place in a baking tray. Add the octopus and shrimps, arranging them nicely in the tray.

2. In a separate bowl, mix together the oil, black pepper, grated garlic, grated ginger, 1 table spoon suya powder and the Maggie or crayfish powder. Add the salt to taste

3. Rub this mixture on the fish, octopus and shrimps. Ensure that slits in the sardines are filled with the spice mixture.
4. Now sprinkle the seafood with the other spoon of suya. Add the sliced onions.

5. Place in a preheated oven at 200oC.
6. Let is bake till it’s cooked. Drain a bit of the excess water if it is too much.
7. Now put it under a grill to get the char grill effect. Once it’s charred a bit, remove and serve warm.

8. Serve with scotch bonnet salsa and some kenkey, rice, banku or eba.

Tuesday, 25 August 2015

Bofrot/Puff Puff/ Ghana Style Doughnuts (Eggless method)

Bofrot, also known as Puff Puff by the Nigerians, is a well loved West African Doughnut, usually sold as street food. It is similar to any other doughnut yet slightly different. There are so many recipes for this doughnut with each giving a different texture and taste but the main ingredients are always the same i.e. Flour, sugar, yeast and water. It has taken me a while to post any recipe for Bofrot because I was trying to find the perfect and authentic recipe for the Ghanaian Bofrot. However, my recent visit back to Ghana made me realize that there isn't one perfect or authentic recipe. I remembered days as a young child buying bofrot from my favourite street vendor. There were many of them yet there was always a favourite one, that you just loved their bofrot. Every street vendor had a slightly different taste and texture to their bofrot and it was up to the customer to choose which vendor's recipe they liked best. Being back home again and tasting bofrot from different vendors made me realize, there isn't one authentic recipe, it all depends on what taste and texture you prefer. For this particular recipe, the texture and taste is what I usually find from vendors from the central region (Fantes). It's a lighter and softer bofrot. There are a number of recipes I like and I will share all with you in time. It's up to you to choose your favourite. Don't forget to leave feedback when you try out the recipes. Enjoy!

  • 340g Plain Flour
  • 100g Caster Sugar
  • 14g or 2 tsp Dried Yeast
  • 1 tsp Nutmeg 
  • 1/2 Tsp salt
  • 290ml Luke Warm Water
  • Oil for Deep Frying
*Recipe adapted from Pepper and Stew

  1. Place the flour and all the dry ingredients in a bowl. 
  2. Mix well and make a well a the center.
  3. Now add the water and mix until well incorporated.
  4. Cover with cling film and place in a warm place for it to rise. It may take about an hour for this to happen. If not give it time for it to rise.
  5. Remove the cling film and stir the batter.
  6. Place the oil on the hob and let it heat up. To check if it is at the right temperature, add a tiny bit of the batter to the oil, if it rises to the top immediately and it start to brown, then the oil is ready.
  7. Using your hand, scoop balls of batter into the oil. Alternatively, use a table spoon to scoop the batter and with the help of another table spoon drop the batter into the oil.
  8. Stir the oil continuously to evenly distribute the heat.
  9. As the bofrot cooks up on one side, it will turn itself as you stir the oil. Once the inside is thoroughly cooked, it easily turns itself. Lower the heat to help the inside of the bofrot to cook thoroughly without burning the bofrot. Continuously stir oil and turn bofrot to get a golden brown colour.  Some prefer a darker shade of brown but be careful not to burn it.
  10. Using a slotted spoon, take out the bofrot and drain on kitchen paper to remove excess oil.
  11. Serve warm with your favourite beverage.