Thursday, July 21, 2011

Recipe #93: Akple (corn and cassava dough)

In July I discussed cassava (yucca, manioc) dough, and began describing how to make it--at least as far as grating the peeled cassava and pressing it to drain it for 2 or 3 days. Today's post follows up on that. After 3 days, you will have a dry, tightly pressed together clump of cassava. I added a cup of water to a blender, and blended the cassava to a dough/paste. That is what I'm using today. (I had several cups of dough, and have the rest stored it in the freezer). A photo at that previous blog posting shows the Ewe answer to banku: akple. Once one has the cassava dough, it is simple to make. I decided akple would go well with the yesterday's garden egg stew, so only made a small amount since I'm home alone this week. You might want to try this small recipe first, and if you like it, increase the recipe next time you make it.

Recipe #93: Akple (cooked corn and cassava dough)

The proportions for making akple are 1/3 of cassava dough to 2/3rds corn dough. It is my understanding that akple is made from unfermented corn dough. I used
  • 1/2 cup of cassava dough
  • 1 cup of corn dough
To make the corn dough, I put a cup of white Indian Head cornmeal in a blender to make it a little finer (optional), then mixed it in a bowl with a teaspoon of cornstarch (also optional) to make a slightly smoother dough, then mixed 1/2 cup of water into it. (NOTE: the photo shows the cassava dough on the left and the corn dough on the right.
  •  Mix together the 2 doughs in a saucepan with a half cup of water to get a smooth creamy mixture, and add a little salt (I used ~1/4 teaspoon). A nice heavy wooden spoon or stick works well.
  • Put the mixture on the stove on a medium heat and stir it as it heats, adding another half cup of water all at once and continue stirring until it forms a solid mass (about 10-15 minutes). Do not allow the dough to become lumpy or scorch on the bottom. Turn it as you stir.
  • When the mixture becomes fairly solid and no longer "wet" looking, take a calabash (or bowl), wet it thoroughly and put a spoonful of the dough into the calabash, shaking it vigorously and rolling the dough inside into a circle or oval shape.
Originally, akple was eaten mainly with fetri ma or fetri detsi, but now it goes well with other dishes, such as fried fish with pepper sauce or shito, or palaver sauce. As I said, I'm enjoying mine with garden egg stew.













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