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Monday, June 7, 2010

Yam Fufu with Fresh Fish Soup

Over the weekend I had Yam fufu and fresh fish soup. Yam fufu brings back fond memories of growing up in Awudome. I had an aunt who especially liked Yam fufu. No matter what kind we were having, be it Cocoyam, Cassava, Plantain, or a blend, she would always have some Yam cooked on the side to make her yam fufu.

Here are the Ingredients I used

1 1/2 pounds fresh fish

1 tuber of Yam

2 tablespoons all purpose flour

2 medium size onions (plus a quarter for spicing fish)

6 - 8 medium size tomatoes

3 large garden eggs

1/2 cup cooking oil

1 handful pepper (kpakpo shito)

3 cloves garlic

Black pepper


Scale and cut the fish into the sizes you want. This could be done for you by the fishmonger depending on where you buy it. Wash and drain the fish, then mash or blend the garlic, onions and 5 peppers till you have a paste. Add a pinch of black pepper and about half a teaspoon of salt to the paste and mix in the fish gently so it doesn't fall apart.

After about 10 minutes heat the oil in a frying pan. As the oil heats, put the flour in a plate and lightly coat the fish. When the oil is hot enough, gently place the fish in it.

Fry the fish till it turns golden brown. Drain on paper towels to soak up any excess oil.

As the fish fries, place the onions, tomatoes, garden eggs and pepper in a pot and add 1 litre of water, cover and boil. Boil them for about 10 minutes. The tomatoes cook first, then the peppers, garden eggs and last, the onions. If overcooked, the tomatoes will break up, releasing their seeds into the soup, which is not what you want.

Use a ladle to scoop out the tomatoes and pepper and blend them. Use a seive to strain the puree back into the pot. You should be left with skin and seeds in the seive. Next, check if the garden eggs are cooked. You want them soggy, so when the skin starts to look transparent and like it is seperating from the flesh, it is cooked. Remove the garden eggs from the pot and put them in cold water. Peel off the skin and remove the seeds. Blend into a fine paste. Add this also to the boiling pot. When the onions are soft enough to run a fork through, break them into chunks and blend. The garden egg and onion puree dont need to be strained, this gives the soup its thickness. Keep the pot boiling throughout.

Cover and boil for 5 minutes, then add the fish. Add salt and reduce heat till the soup is boiling gently.

Now, peel the Yam tube and cut it into fist sized pieces. Wash thouroughly to get all the sand off. Place on a pot, add enough water to cover the Yam and boil. Boil until a fork goes through easily and the yamm is fluffy. Drain off the water but keep covered to retain the heat.

Wash the fufu Mortar and pestle with warm water. Don't use soap just before using since wood absorbs the soap and transfers it to the food. Get a bowl with clean water and a low kitchen stool and with very clean hands, you are set.

Place the hot pieces of Yam into the Mortar, one at a time and pound theminto a fluffy powdery mass before adding the next piece. When half the pieces have been added, start to turn the yam which should be getting sticky by now, with your right hand (the left hand should never touch food) . Alternate you hand movements with the pestle hits, to form some sort of tick-tock rhythm. Do this carefully to avoid a visit to the emergency room.

Depending on the quantity you are preparing, divide the yam into 2 or 3 batches, so you don't overload the mortar.

When the yam mass is sticky enought o be shaped into a ball, it is ready, although, some people like their's really soft in which case you would keep pounding till the desired softness. (the more/harder you pound, the softer it gets).

Shape it into a neat ball or oval, place in a soup dish and serve with hot soup.
This dish is best enjoyed when eaten with your fingers but a spoon will work just as well.
It is a must-try dish for those that don't know it, and I'm sure will bring fond memories to those that do.


  1. i love the cassava fufu but never tried the yam one.. one of these days i will...

    when we make soup at home we use smoked fish or put the fresh fish in raw but seasoned and allow the soup to steam it.

  2. Oh, Erns you should really try the Yam fufu. I also love the smoked fish. There is one that they dry with it's tail in it's mouth, so it rooks like a circle ... that is my favourite. I don't really like the raw fish straight into the soup. Next time you make it that way, take pictures and lets see how best we can work with it.

  3. I never fry my fish. When it is steamed, all the flavour goes into the soup straight. It is VERY nice. I will prepare my version so you can put it up, ok?

  4. Naa that would be great!! I just made some Tilapia soup and put it in straight, I must admit, it was really good.

  5. Chef lady, I tasted yam fufu once long time ago but i only cook cassave fufu but have never tried other yam fufu. The flesh fish has more nutrious in it and is good for everyone's health and even to patients just like Mr. Mills Atta the president of Ghana. lol. You are a good reminder.

  6. mmm that looks so good! thanks for sharing. I bought a yam the other day for the first time, and will try your recipe!

  7. Rachel you should try the Yam fufu. It is devine! And yes fresh fish is much more nutritious since all the goodness goes straight into the soup. I love that part about the President, please give him my recipe, lol.

    Razmatazz are you in Ghana? I was wondering whether you have the fufu mortar. But howeverever it tuns out, please let us know.

  8. never had yam fufu but i will use your instructions to prepare one. thanks master chef

  9. El Boat you are on a roll here with your comments, and I am loving it!!! You have made my weekend, thanks so much.

  10. I am loving this blog..i didnt know such a blog existed.....Whoever is doing this is doing great!!!!

    1. Thanks Conrad, I am beaming over here :)

  11. Jemima what kind of fish did you use for the soup?

    1. Golda, the name just skipped my mind. It is one of these salt water ones. I will get back to you with the name.

  12. Hey, I am in UK and this is how I currently make my fufu demonstrated:

  13. My son isn’t very interested in cooking, he’s usually too busy playing to help. I’d love to change that though! Pickup Lines Google Gravity Tricks I love you quotes Good Night Quotes



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