Groundnut soup is common to find in every chop bar in Ghana, but unfortunately all soups are cooked with meat or fish. To eat great veggie groundnut soup I go to either to Asaase Pa or Rising Phoenix in Accra – or I cook it myself!
Just a few weeks ago I got the chance to stay in the kitchen of a vegetarian restaurant in Cape Coast for a few days, to learn their style of vegetarian cooking. I was especially interested in their traditional Ghanaian recipes. Baobab restaurant is a great place to eat, and I loved my stay in their kitchen where I learned a lot about Ghanaian cooking the veggie way.
This is my own version of the groundnut soup from Baobab restaurant. The kitchen staff was terrified when they saw me adding sugar and lime to the soup, that is not included in the traditional soup – but it balance the rest of the tastes in the soup!
– 6 tbs groundnut paste
– 3 tbs tomato paste
– 0.5 l water
– 1 medium sized onion
– chili to taste (I use 3 of the round red chili in Ghana)
– 1 clove garlic
– 3 tomatoes (remove the skin)
– 2 tsp salt
– 1 tsp sugar
– 1 l water
– 3 carrots
– 100 g mushrooms
– 1 or 2 squeezes of lime
Mix groundnut paste and tomato paste with water to a smooth paste, and boil for 15 minutes.
Add finely chopped onion, tomatoes, chili and garlic (if you have a blender you can blend it to a paste), salt, sugar and one more liter of water. Mix well, and let boil for 30 minutes.
Chop the carrots in sticks. Chop the mushroom in big pieces, and fry it in oil for about 10 minutes with some salt. Mix the carrot and the fried mushroom into the soup with a squeeze or two of lime, and boil for 15 minutes.
Ideally the groundnut soup should be served with banku, but I don´t think it is easy to get outside Ghana. Instead you can serve the soup with plain rice, or you can mash the rice and make rice balls. Remember this soup is supposed to be eaten with your hands the traditional way– not with a spoon!
Do you have any favorite places to eat vegetarian in Ghana?
I´m an Oslo based web publisher with passion for communication, travel and a green lifestyle. When I travel, I prefer to go slow, sustainable, and “live like a local”. Why slow? It is about challenging the cult of speed, and to enjoy the small things in life and to live in the present.