Groundnut (peanut) soup with foul and fufu
Although the poultry traditionally used
in this dish is guinea fowl, the meat of which is dark, chicken may of course be
substituted. Remember that processed poultry will disintegrate quickly in the soup, so
once it is cooked you should remove it from the pot until the soup has thickened. But do
leave it long enough for the rich flavour of the creamy groundnut (peanut) and vegetable
mixture to permeate the meat.
Groundnut (peanut) Soup with Foul is usually served with Fufu an Akan dumpling made from
yams, cocoyams (taro), plantains, cassava or even processed potato flakes. The Fufu should
sit like an island in a sea of soup, with the meat and fish scattered over the top. It is
even referred to as the "island in the sun"! This is a dish that is
traditionally eaten with your fingers - even the soup!
1 Kg (2 lb) lean meat e.g.
chops, medallions of lamb shankscut in chunks, or 6-8 pieces of jointed poultry or guinea
Salt and pepper to taste
2 large onions, finely chopped
4 large, very ripe tomatoes or 400 g (13 oz) canned tomatoes
200 g (6½ oz) groundnut (peanut) paste or peanut butter
2 L (3½ pt) boiling water
Red chillies (hot peppers), fresh or ground, to taste (optional)
4-8 mushrooms (optional)
1 Kg (2 lb) fish cutlets, salted, smoked, grilled, deep-fried or sundried
Put the meat or poultry in a very lage, heavy-based saucepan
(not a crockpot because the initial process of cooking requires fairly high heat and a
crockpot does not provide enough heat to start with). Season meat with salt and pepper.
Add the onions, stir together and cook "dry" on medium heat, stirring
continuously until the outside of the meat is slightly cooked and sealed.
Blanch the tomatoes inn boiling water, peel off the skin and blend the flesh to a smooth
juice. If using canned tomatoes, blend, then pour them into the meat and onion ixture and
continue to simmer. Put the groundnut (peanut) paste or peanut butter into a big bowl, add
500 ml (¾ pt) of the boiling water and use a wooden spoon or a blender to blend the paste
and water carefully together to form a creamy, smooth sauce.
Add this sauce to the meat mixture with chillies (hot peppers) and mushrooms. Continue to
simmer, stirring only occasionally to prevent the food sticking to the bottom of the pan.
This is now the basic soup. Pou the rest of the boiling water into the soup and simmer
slowly on medium heat to cook the meat for about 30-40 minutes, depending on the type of
meat used (guinea fowl takes longer).
Prepare your choice of fish by removing any residual bones. Add the fish either whole or
in chunks to the soup towards the end of the cooking (during the last 30 minuters), to
prevent it from breaking up in the soup. Once all the ingredients have been added, simmer
slowly until the soup thickens.
900 ml (1½ pt) boiling water
90 g (3 oz) potato flour
200 ml (7 fl oz) cold water
1 packet (180 g/6 oz) potato flakes
Warm a medium saucepan with 200 ml (7 fl oz) of the boiling
water. In a small jug blend the potato flour with 200 ml (7 fl oz) of lukewarm water
(mixing some of the boiling water with part of the cold water; the water must not be hot
or it will cook the starch) to form a creamy mixture.
Empty the water from the warmed saucepan. Pour the potato flakes into the saucepan and add
the remaining boiling water, enough to fully cover the potato flakes. Do not stir yet.
Using a wooden spoon, stir the potato flour mixture in the jug and quickly add this to the
saucepan. Speed is of the essence here, as is dexterity! Stir the 2 mixtures together
vigorously, pulling the dough ib from the cener against the inside of the saucepan with
one hand and gripping the pan firmly with the other.
When the dough is firm and smooth, moisten a small bowl with small quantities of te cold
water and scoop the dough into this bowl, either as one large ball or individual balls,
snd serve with soup.
Palmnut soup with fufu
Crab meat forms just one of the
ingredients of this filling soup based on the pulp of palmnuts. Traditionally, the pulp is
extracted by pounding the fleshy exterior of the palmnut, but for the Western kitchen
tinned palmnut pulp has to suffice.
Luckily it tastes just as good as the fresh and is available in most capital cities of the
world. The palm from which the nusts are gathered grows in many tropical areas, from West
Africa to Malaysia, New Guinea, Fiji and Brazil. Palmnut Soup is another dish that
traditionally is eaten with Fufu. This combitation dish is common to West Africa.
125 mL (4 oz) water
1 Kg (2 lb) lean lamb shanks or chops, or shoulder of beef cut in chunks
Salted pigs' trotters, jointed and cleaned
Salt and pepper to taste
2 large onions, finely chopped
3 large, ripe tomatoes, blanched, peeled and puréed
750 g (1½ lb) palmnut pulp
250 mL (8 fl oz) boiling water
Chilli pepper or fresh, ground red chillies (hot peppers) to taste, optional
4 large mushrooms, cleaned and peeled
2 giant crabs cooked whole in salted water and drained (remove legs but not the claws -
save cooked legs to be added separately to the soup)
1 Kg (2 lb) fish cutlets (salted, smoked, grilled, deep-fried or sundried)
Place the water, the meat and the pigs' trotters in a very
large, heavy-based saucepan (not a crockpot because the initial process of cooking this
dish requires fairly high heat and a crockpot does not afford that level of heat to start
Season to taste with salt and pepper. Stir iin the onions
and cook 'dry' on medium heat, stirring continuously, until the outside of the meat is
'sealed'. Add the tomatoes. Continue to simmer for 10-15 minutes.
In a large bowl, combine the palmnut pulp with the boiling
water, beating with a wooden spoon to form a creamy, smooth consistency. Add this to the
meat mixture with ground chillies (hot peppers), the mushrooms, giant crabs and crab legs.
Simmer on medium heat for 30-40 minutes, stirring only occasionally to prevent food
sticking to the bottom of the pan.
Prepare your choice of smoked, grilled, deep-fried or
sundried fish by removing any residual bones. Add the fish either whole or in chunks to
the soup during the last 30 minutes to prevent it from breaking up too much and becoming
'mushy' in the soup. Once all the ingredients are added, continue to simmer slowly until
Serve hot with Fufu. You may choose to continue simmering
the soup to thicken it and turn it into a palmnut stew, in which case you serve it with
gari or cassava powder, rice or the carbohydrate of your choice.