The place to Explore Benin and its Culture
When visiting Benin and savoring some of the local dish, it’s almost impossible to not come across a special dish called Amiwo. Amiwo is very popular and traditional dish turned into a dough and is made in a chicken stock with tomato paste and corn flour added. It is enjoyed with fried or grilled chicken or fish. It is served with a sautéed medley of diced mixed sweet peppers, red onions and plum tomatoes. To add an extra quick, a hot habanero jam is added to enhance the flavor of the dish and raise some heat.
Amiwo taste closely to mashed potatoes however, it texture is firmer and harder. It is very easy to find the ingredients to replicate this very savory and appetizing dish. For those that want to try to replicate this dish, below is a recipe to try. Enjoy and feel free to share your photos in the comment section below.
This recipe makes 4 serving
– 4 Tablespoons of tomato paste (add more if you want to increase the color and taste)
– 2 finely chopped garlic cloves or 2 tablespoons of garlic powder
– 1 medium finely chopped yellow onion
– Salt and pepper
– 3 cups of of water
– 4 tablespoons of vegetable or canola oil
1. Heat oil in a large non stick deep pan/pot and sauté the chopped onions and garlic on medium heat for about 2-4 minutes or until they’ve softened but are not caramelized
2. Add in the tomato paste and stir for about 2 minutes
3. Add in the water and the chicken bouillon. Stir to ensure all ingredients are well mixed. Bring to boil.
4. Once the stock starts to boil, slowly start adding in the flour to this mixture, mix it vigorously and quickly, with a wooded spoon or wisk so that you get a firm “paste” that won’t lump. Ensure the paste has no lump. To facilitate mixing if it’s too hard, you can use an electric mixer.
5. Once everything is mixed evenly, turn the heat the low, cover the pan or pot for about 10 minutes to let the corn mixture to cook. Check and stir frequently to ensure it is not burning at the bottom.
6. Transfer the paste into small molds, ramekins or one large mold and let the paste seat for about 20-30 mn. This will solidify the paste and turn it into a firm dough.
7. To serve, turn the mold into a plate and add a sautéed medley of diced peppers, onions and tomatoes.