Waakye is the 'Ghanaian' Rice and Beans cooked infused with Millet leaves. It's a popular dish in Ghana for brunches and lunches.
I personally think 'Waakye' is an extravagant street food ( not only can it be time consuming, it has many accompaniments , including 2 types of sauces (Waakye sauce and Shito, the black chilli sauce), Spaghetti, Salad, Gari Fortor, Fried Plantain, assortment of meat and fish to mention but a few.
The Waakye sauce is somewhat an open secret especially amongst the 'Northener's' of Ghana, who specialise in this sauce. I hold a personal belief the Northerner's of Ghana are the best, when it comes to cooking with spices (can't wait to explore).
I remember this recipe from my Hairdresser, Hajia about how to achieve the dark intense flavour of the Waakye sauce. I've added my own tweak to it for that Ndudu twist.
125g of Tomato purée mixed with 150ml of water to a smooth paste.
700g of fresh sun ripened Tomato cut into chunks
3 large Red peppers cut into chunks (optional)
20g of roughly chopped peeled Ginger
10 fresh red chillies
10g of crushed Guinean pepper or Grains of Paradise.
1 teaspoon of the Ghanaian mix spice with a Pimento base.
3 large Red Onions
150ml of Groundnut oil
1 Shrimp stock cube
Salt and pepper to taste.
Add the oil to a saucepan and place on a medium heat.
Blend the onions, Grains of Paradise, Ginger and chillies into a paste.
Add the 'Onion blend' to the oil and fry till the volume reduces in half.
Add the tomato purée and cook till it turns into a paste. This should take about 12-15 minutes.
Blend the tomatoes and pepper till smooth.
Add the tomatoes to the saucepan and stir till well mixed.
Reduce the heat to a low setting and cook for 25 minutes, by which time the sauce has reduced by half .
Add the mixed spice and shrimp stock.
Cook for a further 15 minutes and constantly stir. Watch the sauce turn into a dark rich colour.
I prefer not to add salt to the sauce at this stage. The sauce is at it's best, 24hrs after cooking. This allows all the spices to infuse naturally. The Waakye sauce is time consuming, hence I make a large portion to last a few weeks. Place the Waakye sauce in an airtight container and place it in the fridge.
After 24hrs or when I'm ready to use the sauce , I then add the required salt.
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