The countries comprising Western Africa — Ghana, Gambia, Nigeria, Togo, Mali, Sierra Leone, Benin, Senegal, Guinea and the Ivory Coast — offer some of the most richly flavourful dishes in cuisine today. Amply flavoured with spices like bay leaf, cinnamon, cumin, ginger, cardamom and grains of paradise, West African dishes are the best of decadent comfort food and will land on your table again and again.
Vegan West African Peanut Stew
Mafé, a vibrant West African stew, is typically made with beef, but this version swaps in lentils instead, making the dish entirely vegan. Flavoured with garlic, ginger, cardamom, as well as a cup of peanut butter for a nutty flavour. Yum yum yum.
Smoky West African-Inspired Gullah Rice
You can’t make your way through West African cuisine without sampling jollof, a flavour-packed one-pot rice dish stewed in tomato paste, broth and meat. Kardea Brown’s Gullah version has a rich blend of savoury flavours, from the tomato base infused with onion and garlic to the meats, tender and tasty.
Beef and Okra Stew
Another recipe from Kardea Brown’s kitchen, this is the warming dinner you didn’t know you were craving. This comforting beef stew features tender, melt-in-your-mouth morsels of top sirloin and earthy, fiber-rich okra, a vegetable that’s native to West Africa and used often in West African cooking.
Fried Sweet Plantains
Nothing is as satisfying as sizzling chewy plantain to a thin crisp coat in light oil and biting through the lightly browned skin to find a chewy, sweet centre. Plantain is banana’s starchier cousin – and is a great pairing for stews, meats and other savoury dishes.