Ghanaian Food - Authentic
Looking for authentic food from Ghana anywhere along the R or F train in Brooklyn. Is this possible? I was watching Bourdain's No Reservations on Monday night and he was in Ghana and the food looked absolutely fantastic. Lots of thick, spicy stews with goat, lamb and other stuff. Is there an outpost of traditional, eat with your hands, Ghanaian (is that the proper way to make and adjective out of Ghana?) anywhere in NYC? Any tips much appreciated.
To my knowledge, you can't find authentic Ghanian food in Brooklyn. In the Bronx, however, there are several places, including two within walking distance of Yankee Stadium.
We had fufu (sp?) and spicy fish, along with a number of other authentic Ghanian dishes at one of these restaurants, owned and operated by a lovely woman from Ghana. We were the only guests that evening and had the dining room in the rear to ourselves.
Check this link for more details:
Thanks, famdoc, I guess I can put aside my Mets allegiance for a night and suffer the indignity of that foul arena in the pursuit of awesome chow.
If you're interested in other African cuisines as well, there is a pretty good Guinean restaurant on Franklin Avenue a few blocks north of Eastern Parkway (by the 2/3/4/5 trains). That cuisine features hearty, flavorful stews (some are peanut-based) served with huge plates of fluffy rice. You can request a cooked habanero pepper on the side to serve as hot sauce.
I don't think there's any type of African food near an R or F station, anywhere...maybe if you consider Madiba or Keur and Dye as being near Atlantic Avenue/Pacific Street.
There is a Ghanian Restaurant on Flatbush, right past Lincoln Road (Q Train to Prospect Park; exit at head of train). It is called the Meytex Lounge; Sietsema had nice words about it a while back, the neighborhood blog can't make up its mind (http://acrossthepark.typepad.com/atp/...). I have no opinion as I haven't eaten there.
I went to Meytex about a week ago with a few folks who post here sometimes. It was quite good, I'd say in the same league as Florence's. Especially good were the whole tilapia with a spicy rub, the rich and smoky-tasting spinach/egushi (squash seed) stew, and the peanut soup with goat. The woman who runs the place and cooks, Mecry, is very nice. I hope to post a review with photos on Word of Mouth within the next couple of weeks.
re: Joe MacBu
Papaye is amazing. I have been there 4or 5 times and never been disappointed. Fufu, omo uo and waakeye are all good. Goat kebabs are spicy and a nice snack for the short walk back to the subway. Get there early though, as they often begin running out of things by dinner time.
196 McClellan St, Bronx, NY 10456
so the place African Grills and Soul Food is now called Accra but I don't know for how long it's had that name. regardless, I went there this week with my sister and a friend who spent two years in Ghana and just came back this summer, with a hunger for the cuisine she ate so much of. It's a great restaurant, close to the train, steamtable but not self-serve and great service; husband and wife behind the counter (Davine is the really helpful and friendly big guy) and family in the kitchen; we had:
+ pepper soup with cow foot and various beef parts (the place is strictly halal)
+ palmnut soup (not peanut or groundnut soup) with various beef parts, fishy
+ spinach with egusi (ground pumpkin seed)
+ jollof rice served with gari (dried and fried cassava powder)
+ smoked turkey butts
+ suya (grilled steak offered in medium and well-done versions)
+ fried fish (maybe tilapia)
+ banku (fermented cornmeal / cassava)
+ cocoyam fufu
+ rice fufu
+ ginger drink (spicy!)
+ shito (red pepper sauce)
wow, what flavors! we really enjoyed the meal and could barely get all the food down, mainly because we had 3 of the fufu starch bombs; I liked the cocoyam fufu and rice fufu a lot; apparently the plaintain one is really good but they didn't have it ready; the banku was definitely more sour and fermented and the kenkey is supposed to be even more sour; all were good foils against the rich and spicy food. the spinach was amazingly fresh and tender and totally green yet totally infused with flavor; hard to describe but definitely a must-order. there is an okra dish that is supposed to be nice but that wasn't ready yet either; we went at 1pm on a weekday and they had a big selection out but this might be more of a mid-afternoon or dinner place.
the meats were really good; the steak was kinda dry but the turkey tails were a revelation; smoked to a porky bacon-y goodness but poultry instead, these had deep flavor. the two soups were very good; the pepper soup was quite spicy with deep flavor and went really well with the jollof rice; the palmnut was also very good and deep with dried-fish flavor so you have to like the taste of salted/preserved/dried seafood. they didn't have groundnut (peanut) soup which our friend insisted would be much tastier but we found it great. the fried fish was lengths of bone-in fish but really delicious; no batter and fresh; excellent with some kind of hot sauce they served it with over the jollof rice.
the jollof rice was amazing; great texture, great flavor and really a wonderful flavor. Davine kept telling us that it was "voted" the best jollof rice of all the african restaurants in NYC; not sure how he surveyed everyone but indeed, the best I've ever had. the gari is interesting; like a fried topping that didn't really add crunch but, something of a good texture. if you dumped that in any of the soups or stews as a thickener, you would seriously get a full meal.
the shito was a deep-red and smoky hot pepper paste that added great flavor but not much spice; reminded me of the hot chili oil at Shanghai Cafe or at Hand-Pulled Noodle on Doyers; sort of a sa-cha thing going on; very good. there was also a green sauce that we saw but weren't served; that's probably really good too.
overall, an excellent meal; this place is close to the train and the prices are very reasonable. there were maybe 3x more dishes available but after jabbering with the servers for 10-15 minutes, we just asked them to "hook us up" and indeed they did. they had many more different fufus available in various colors and a few other starches as well plus a bunch more stews. and as we ate, we kept seeing more big trays come out of the kitchen. the place has a great seating area in the back of the restaurant with comfortable tables and booths so don't get the impression that it's strictly a takeout joint. the A/C is really cold though so bring a jacket or something.
I don't have that much experience eating west african food but I've had meals in restaurants and home-cooked; this was a great meal and I'd love to get back up there and try some of the other dishes. ya'll should check it out.
2041 Davidson Ave, Bronx, NY 10453