West African cuisine is heavy with starch, light on meat and generous on fat. Cooks in West Africa often use root vegetables like yams, cocoyams, and cassava, as well as cereal grains, plantains, hot spices, rice, peanuts, black-eyed peas, okra, green peas, citrus fruits, and pineapples.
Spicy Foods Make West Africans Cooler
Benin, Burkina Faso, Cape Verde, Ghana, Gambia, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Ivory Coast, Liberia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Togo—these are the countries of West Africa. Unlike North Africa, these countries absorbed surprisingly little from their European settlers. The biggest international culinary exchange for the West African nations unfortunately came about because of the slave trade. Anyone who has grown up in the southern United States has had, probably without knowing it, dishes whose heritage begins in Africa. Similarly, the ships that sailed to Africa brought with them some of the indigenous crops of the Americas. Together, these factors helped create today's African diet.
West African Recipes
Cookbooks with Recipes
- The Africa Cookbook by Jessica B. Harris
Africa on Wikipedia
Ghana on Wikipedia
Senegal on Wikipedia
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This page modified July 2010