Accra Restaurant – Part 5

Instagram Post 9/12/2018

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The last photoset from our recent amazing dinner at Accra Restaurant, 2065 Adam Clayton Powell Jr Blvd in Harlem – until I go back for more, that is!

[1] Jollof Rice with Chicken. And a hard-boiled egg. Accra’s jollof rice, the widely celebrated and beloved tomato-based West African triumph and a source of both pride and dispute among African nations as to whose version is best, was delicious as was the chicken.
[2] Pounded Yam Fufu and Okra. This time, the fufu is yam rather than cassava; different but equally tasty. The okra soup is delicious although mucilaginous – an acquired taste, or perhaps an acquired texture. Generally my advice to those who are new to okra soup is to try to think past the consistency and just focus on the wonderful flavor!
[3] Wakey (you might see waakye) with Fried Whiting and Gari. Waakye is Ghana’s culinary claim to fame; similar to West Indian rice and peas, it’s made with rice and black eyed peas or cowpeas. Gari is dried, ground cassava, a little like Brazilian manioc, but unique. And tasty fried whiting – what’s not to like?!

I’ll post the detailed story about our incredible experience as well as a roundup of everything we ate soon.
 
 

Accra Restaurant – Part 4

Instagram Post 9/10/2018

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But wait! There’s more! More photos from our recent incredible dinner at Accra Restaurant, 2065 Adam Clayton Powell Jr Blvd in Harlem, that is. Continuing the cavalcade of food we loved….

[1] Eba with Egushi. So many fufus, so little time, and I admit to liking them all. In contrast to smooth, pounded cassava fufu, firmer eba has tiny flecks of gari (dried grated cassava) in it and is a little tart or sour tasting. Perfect with egushi (you might see egusi), a delicious soup made from ground melon/pumpkin/squash/gourd seeds.
[2] Banku with Baked Tilapia. Banku is fermented corn or corn + cassava dough, a little sticky, and is a typical partner for baked tilapia and other fish dishes.

More to come from Accra Restaurant….
 
 

Accra Restaurant – Part 3

Instagram Post 9/8/2018

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Our recent off the charts dinner at Accra Restaurant, 2065 Adam Clayton Powell Jr Blvd in Harlem featured so many delicious dishes that I don’t have a favorite, other to say how much I love the cuisine of Ghana and the way Accra does it. I’ll do a comprehensive post soon, but meanwhile here are few more photos of what we enjoyed.

[1] Dibi and Acheke with remarkable mustard onions. Dibi is roasted meat, in this case lamb, sliced into chunks, and often part of the street food scene; the mustard component is a significant ingredient in the recipe. Acheke (you might see it as attiéké) is grated cassava with a texture similar to couscous.
[2] Guinea Fowl (Akonfem). The meat is a little leaner than chicken and the flavor is more pronounced. It was topped with peanut powder, traditionally a blend of peanuts and chili powder along with spices like ginger, nutmeg, cloves, and cinnamon.

More to come from Accra….
 
 

Accra Restaurant – Part 2

Instagram Post 9/7/2018

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More deliciousness from our recent feast at Accra Restaurant, 2065 Adam Clayton Powell Jr Blvd in Harlem. Full story coming soon, but for now a few more photos of what we enjoyed.

[1] Emo-Tuwoo and Peanut Soup with goat. I’ve seen many spellings for this starch including emotuo and omotuo; orthography aside, it’s a compressed rice ball that goes perfectly with peanut soup. Sounds good, right? Tasted even better!
[2] Fried Turkey Tail. Known to some as the pope’s nose, I call it the part that goes over the fence last. Smoky, juicy, delicious and often overlooked by those who don’t know better! 😉

More to come from Accra Restaurant….
 
 

Accra Restaurant – Part 1

Instagram Post 9/6/2018

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Ever had Ghanaian cuisine? Want to try some of the best you’ll ever have? Then look no further than Accra Restaurant, 2065 Adam Clayton Powell Jr Blvd in Harlem. A group of us converged there recently and thanks to their excellent food and warm hospitality, it was an extraordinary experience. The tale is the stuff of which fantasies are made and I’ll post a detailed story soon but in the meantime, I’ll feature some dishes to whet your appetite.

[1] Plantain Fufu and Palmnut Soup. Pinch off a hunk of the starch with your fingers, dip it in the delectable soup and enjoy. One of my favorite starch/soup combinations, but they’re all great here.

[2] Suya. Grilled, spicy skewered beef (sliced here), best known as a delicious street food.

More to come from Accra….
 
 

Golody Halal Buffet

Instagram Post 9/3/2018

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Golody Halal Buffet recently opened at 222 1st Avenue in Manhattan. Featuring West African and Mediterranean cuisine, it’s steam table, self-serve style and their descriptions of what I selected were simple: “Lamb Chops, Chicken, Spicy Chicken, Athieke with Peanut Butter Sauce, Cassava Leaves”. Timing is everything and ours was less than stellar; we were told to come back in two hours and there would be more choices. Ah well, maybe another day. Note that although the signage reads “All You Can Eat”, it’s pay by the pound.
 
 

Allerton Avenue International Food Festival

Instagram Post 8/25/2018

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Scenes from the Allerton Avenue International Food Festival in the Bronx.

It was a treat to see Mama G African Kitchen at the festival. I’ve written about one of their brick and mortar restaurants (3650A White Plains Road in the Bronx) here and here so I don’t need to repeat how much I like their food; I’ll just show you what we got:

Waakye – you may see variant spellings but the pronunciation is wah-chay (rhymes with watch-way) and it’s Ghana’s culinary claim to fame. Similar to West Indian rice and peas, it’s made with rice and black eyed peas or cowpeas; the characteristic reddish-purplish-brown color can come from dried red sorghum leaves, millet leaves, or even baking soda. Yellow gari (ground cassava) on the side.

Jollof rice – There’s a keen rivalry among West African countries over whose version is the best but tomato paste figures heavily into all of them.

Fried turkey (the part that goes over the fence last – yum!), plantain, and fried croaker submerged under spicy sauce.

Delicious!
 
 

Mama G African Kitchen – Part 2

Instagram Post 7/27/2018

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The further adventures of Ghanaian food from Mama G African Kitchen at 3650A White Plains Road in the Bronx.

[1] Part of our first course: Grilled Red Snapper and Spicy Kebab.

[2] Peanut Butter Soup (you might see it as Groundnut Soup/Stew). This bowl was home to both meat and fish but I didn’t catch the types. The starch that accompanied it was emotuo, a pressed ground rice ball (some would call it a dumpling) that was perfect with the soup; I’ve seen emotuo only in connection with Ghanaian cuisine.

[3] Okra Stew with Banku. Banku is another West African staple starch. It’s most closely associated with Ghana and is distinguished by the fact that it’s one of the fermented varieties, in this case a blend of cassava and corn. It works like all West African doughy starches: pinch off a bit, dip it into the stew or soup and enjoy – really hands-on cuisine! Okra stew can vary from somewhat mucilaginous to extremely mucilaginous, but either way it’s relentless in that regard. It may be an acquired taste, or more accurately, an acquired texture, but give it a chance before you pass judgment; you might be surprised!

Note that there’s another location of this restaurant/catering facility at 1322A Gun Hill Road, also in the Bronx.
 
 

Mama G African Kitchen – Part 1

Instagram Post 7/24/2018

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Bronx food needs more love, so here’s a nod in that direction! Recently, a group of us who were craving 🇬🇭 Ghanaian food went to Mama G African Kitchen at 3650A White Plains Road for lunch and I’m so happy we did; the lighting didn’t do the chef’s skilled cooking justice, but fortunately my eyes were bigger than my camera so I enjoyed our meal immensely.

[1] Waakye – you may see variant spellings but the pronunciation is wah-chay (rhymes with watch-way) and it’s Ghana’s culinary claim to fame. Similar to West Indian rice and peas, it’s made with rice and black eyed peas or cowpeas; the characteristic reddish-purplish-brown color can come from dried red sorghum leaves, millet leaves, or even baking soda. It was paired with croaker plus spaghetti and gari (ground cassava). Shito, the sauce made from hot peppers, tomato, garlic, and fish, is on the side.

[2] Pinch off a bit of starchy eba (which is made from gari) with your fingers and gather up some stew – here either the accompanying spinach or egusi (ground melon seeds) – the best way to enjoy West African cuisine!

Note that there’s another location at 1322A Gun Hill Road.
 
 

Accra Restaurant

Instagram Post 6/30/2018

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As part of a recent jaunt to Harlem, we visited Accra Restaurant, named for Ghana’s capital. Senegalese food is a bit easier to find in this neighborhood, but we had set out for a Ghanaian lunch and this steamtable spot provided just what we were after. Alas, my photos of their savory okra and palm nut soups with fufu got lost in the sauce, but here are two dishes that we enjoyed equally well:

[1] Fried whiting with jollof rice. Our jollof rice, the widely celebrated and beloved tomato-based West African triumph and a source of both pride and dispute among African nations as to whose version is best, was perfectly delicious as was the whiting.

[2] Chicken with waakye. You may see variant spellings but the pronunciation is wah-chay (rhymes with watch-way) and it’s Ghana’s culinary claim to fame. Similar to West Indian rice and peas, it’s made with rice and black eyed peas or cowpeas; the characteristic reddish-purplish-brown color can come from dried red sorghum leaves, millet leaves, or even baking soda. Love it!

Accra Restaurant is located at 2065 Adam Clayton Powell Jr Blvd, Manhattan.