Fufu and Lentil Stew

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This week our junior chefs will be getting acquainted with legumes. Legumes include one of our favorite types of food: butterbeans! Lentils, peas, chickpeas and peanuts also fall into this category. Legumes are packed with proteins and complex carbs which keep us full and fueled throughout busy days. They can be added to salads, stews, soups, pasta sauces, quinoa dishes and even baked goods. This week, we’re exploring one of the oldest methods for cooking with legumes. We’ll be rolling up our sleeves and making some traditional, handmade Ghanian Fufu & Lentil Stew. Recipe below!

Ingredients For the Lentil Stew: 

  • 2 T olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, mincedfufu-in-bowl-pounded-mix-of-steamed-plantains-and-cassava-root-148697787-588ba1b43df78caebc64c946
  • ½ onion, diced
  • ½ T cumin
  • 2 cans lentils and 1 c water
  • ½ bu kale or collard greens
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 lemon

Ingredients For the Fufu:

  • 3 plantains
  • 1 pound cassava
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

Do This Ahead of Time: Take plantains out of skin, cut into small pieces, and boil until soft. Peel and cut cassava into small pieces and boil until soft. (can boil at same time as plantains, make sure to season the water!)  Try to hold warm. Rinse lentils!

First, make the lentil stew.

  • Take the kale off the stems and  rip or cut into bite size pieces.
  • Heat the olive oil on medium high in the pot, then add the garlic and onions and start to brown.  
  • Add cumin to the pot and fry. 
  • Add the two cans of lentils and the water, bring to a boil and turn down to a simmer.
  • Add the kale and cook for 20 minutes

While the stew is cooking, make the fufu.

  • Mash the  plantains and cassava with forks or a potato masher until they resemble mashed potatoes.  Once they are broken down, start beating with a spoon until they are smooth and sticking together.  Texture should be resilient and sticky.  Add a little more salt if necessary.
  • Shape the fufu into balls and eat with stew.
  • Finish the stew by adjusting seasoning and adding lemon juice to taste.  

In Ghana, it is common practice to eat your fufu and stew with your hands. Most people use the fufu dough as a spoon. Enjoy!