Flair Catering School: Week Two
During week two of catering classes, I learned Ghanaian dishes including two classic stews, some amazing deep-fried street food, and a traditional (and very delicious) hibiscus drink.
Practicals Day 3:
Akpiti & Adunlei
Both akpiti (left) and adunlei (right) are made of a deep-fried, unfermented corn flour.
Mama always said that if you deep fried a shoe, it’d taste good. And while I have yet to taste a deep-fried shoe, the theory of anything deep-fried tasting delicious has yet to be proven wrong.
The adunlei was far superior to the akpiti in my eyes. The adunlei’s crust was crispy, while the inside was light and fluffy. This is definitely something I’ll be making back home – when my cholesterol is feeling low.
Kontomire (taro leaves) remind me of a mild kale.
I also used koobi – a tilapia covered with salt and dried in the sun for days. After boiling and stewing, it was perfectly scrumptious.
Practicals Day 4:
The hibiscus flowers pictured above were boiled for 15 minutes with half of a prekese pod. The deep burgundy colored mixture was then strained and finished by mixing in ginger, sugar syrup, whole dried cloves, and freshly squeezed lemon and orange juice. The flavor was that of a very robust tea – the ginger and cloves were outstanding.
For this stew, okro and garden eggs (similar to eggplants) were sliced and sauteed together.
Crabs, salmon, tuna, and koobi were added along with onions, palm oil, and tomatoes. My teacher told me to make sure to buy the live crabs, since I don’t know when the dead ones had died. The live crabs were placed in a plastic bag and put in my backpack; until I got home, I kept checking to make sure they were still in there.
The dish was served with banku – fermented corn and cassava dough.
Stirring the banku dough while it was on the fire was very difficult – a superhuman feat in my opinion. After I failed miserably, a Ghanaian classmate took over, yielding the following end result.
To be honest, okra stew is not my favorite dish. It’s not the slimy texture that puts me off – I just feel as though it uses too many flavors and fails to mold together into one cohesive dish.
Below are two classmates who helped me on day three of practicals.