Togolese Gboma Dessi is the dinner for tonight! A classic sauce that is also called sauce feuille, you can eat gboma dessi along with akoumé, a dish made from corn flour, or you can choose to eat it with rice.
Togolese Gboma Dessi has a similar recipe to Ghanaian stew, Fetri Detsi, often prepared with okra and gboma by the people of the Volta Region, but the dish has now spread to other regions.
This is no surprise as Togo and the inhabitants of the Volta Region in Ghana share similarities in terms of history, language, and food. Gboma, which basically means “fresh leaves” in Ewe, is a language spoken in Togo and parts of Volta Ghana. Most refer to this gboma as spinach.
Gboma Dessi or sauce feuille is prepared with spinach and shrimp, crabs, smoked fish, meat, or chicken.
Whichever protein you choose to prepare Togolese Gboma Dessi with, all you have to do is strictly follow the traditional cooking instructions of this stable dish. For this recipe, we’ll use beef, smoked fish, shrimp, and some crabs.
Now let’s prepare dinner!
How to Prepare Togolese Gboma Dessi
Togo, officially the Togolese Republic, is a francophone country in West Africa bordered by Ghana to the west, Benin to the east, and Burkina Faso to the north. The country extends south to the Gulf of Guinea, where you’ll find its capital, Lomé. It covers 22,008 square miles (57,000 square kilometers) with a population of approximately 8 million and has a width of fewer than 115 km or 71 miles between Ghana and its eastern neighbor, Benin.
Gboma dessi is probably the closest thing to a national dish of Togo, and a delicious and healthy way to enjoy your evening meal, complete with beef, shrimp, and akoumé.
You’ll need just a few specific West African staple ingredients to make gboma dessi, a recipe I’m confident you’ll love due to its flavor and aroma. Believe me, this is a healthy delicacy to spice up your evening. Get your cooking pot already!
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Ingredients for Preparing Togolese Gboma Dessi
- Ajwain seeds
- 6pcs of Hot pepper
- 14 oz. tomato sauce
- ¼ lb shrimp (optional)
- 2 Maggi stock cubes
- 2 onions, thinly sliced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- Chopped ginger or paste
- 1 lb smoked fish chopped
- ¼ cup of palm oil or dzomi
- 3 fresh tomatoes, chopped
- 1 lb spinach or gboma leaves
- 1 ½ lbs. beef, cut into cubes
You’ll need one-and-a-half tablespoons of Gbotemi spice blend, made by dry-frying in a skillet all the spices (except the ginger) and then blending together to a fine powder in a spice grinder (with the ginger):
- 1 tsp. whole cloves
- 1 tsp. anise seeds
- 1 tsp. ajwain seeds
- 1 tsp. cardamom seeds
- 1 tsp. ground ginger
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- In a large cooking pot, heat part of ¼ cup of palm oil or dzomi.
- Saute the chopped onion, minced garlic and ginger for two minutes.
- Add your beef, a pinch of salt, and one Maggi stock cube.
- Add gbotemi spice.
- Add a little water, stir and cover to cook for 30 – 40 minutes.
- After, add the smoked fish and shrimp and leave the mixture to boil for 10 minutes.
- Set aside.
- Wash and slice your spinach leaves or gboma. You can also use your hand to slice the gboma leaves into pieces.
- Steam for five minutes with a little water.
- Put the remaining palm oil to boil and add chopped onion, garlic, and ginger paste.
- Add your tomato paste and stir. After 5 minutes, add your fresh tomatoes and leave to boil for 10 minutes.
- Pop or squeeze the hot pepper in the sauce. Stir, taste, and season with a Maggi stock cube, and a pinch of salt.
- Add your boiled meat and broth to the tomato sauce.
- Leave to boil for 15 minutes and simmer for 2 minutes.
- Serve hot with boiled rice or Akoumé
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Join Naty Cooking Diary as she takes you through how to prepare classic Togolese Gboma Dessi. Naty is passionate about cooking and food in general and loves to share African cuisine on her Youtube channel.
Togolese Gboma Dessi
- 1 lb Spinach
- 1/4 tbsp Salt
- 6 pcs Hot pepper
- 14 oz Tomato paste
- 3 pcs Fresh Tomatoes
- 1/4 lb Shrimp (optional)
- 1 lb Smoked fish
- 1 1/2 lb Beef, chopped
- 2 Maggi Stock Cubes
- 2 Onions, thinly sliced
- 2 cloves Garlic, minced
- 1 tbsp Ginger paste
- 1/4 cup Palm oil
- 1 tbsp Cloves
- 1/4 tbsp Salt
- 1 tbsp Ajwain seeds
- 1 tbsp cardamom seeds
Video: Source Naty Cooking Diary licensed under CC BY 2.0
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