The pride of African homes is in passing down and preserving the rich history and culture of Africa.
Passed down from our founding fathers to our parents and now to us, some popular dishes ring a bell of familiarity across many African countries.
These foods are part and parcel of Africa’s nutritional heritage. The “fufu” dish is a native West African dish.
Although it has various names across various countries owing to the different tribes Africa hosts, it’s still popularly known as fufu.
“fufu” is a Twi word native to the Akans people of Ghana. Some of its names include: Couscous by Cameronians, Sakoro by Ghanaians, and Akpu, swallow or loi-loi by Nigerians.
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What is this “fufu” dish?
No idea what Africans refer to as fufu, don’t worry; let me explain. Fufu is a thick and sticky food. It has a dough-like nature and has a very soft texture when felt.
Fufu is what I would describe as finger food because it is traditionally eaten using the fingers.
It is eaten with various African soups ranging from Edikang Ikong soup to Egusi soup, but please note that fufu is not consumed with pepper soup.
Despite this dish having soup attached to it, it’s more of a sauce eaten with other carbohydrates but just not fufu.
The Main ingredient used to make fufu was cassava, but now, fufu can be made from Plantains, Yams, and Cocoyams, depending on the country you find yourself in.
Have no idea how to eat fufu? Don’t worry, here’s how: fufu is eaten by cutting bits of the fufu from the large chunk before you and rolling those bits into balls.
The balls are then dipped into your soup and swallowed. Hence it is sometimes referred to as swallow or as food.
Being a traditional dish in many African countries, fufu is made in various ways and with multiple ingredients.
The fufu dish is no longer a local dish as the craving for it has led to its variations by Africans in the diaspora. We now majorly have two types of fufu which are the African and Caribbean fufu.
The Caribbean fufu came due to the enslaved Africans being taken to the Caribbean. Although now a Caribbean dish, the ts name remains fufu.
Cassava is the original ingredient of this dish. Still, since that would be hard to come by in the diaspora, African families have substituted the cassava version for maize flour, semolina, and plantain flour.
We also have another type of fufu variation which has to do with not just the ingredients but the preparation method.
The process by which starch is transformed into glucose accounts for the significant variation between filtered and unfiltered fufu. Cassava is boiled and then mashed; this provides the starch for unfiltered fufu.
A highly processed food loaded with sugar and bad fats is the end consequence of this technique. The yam’s starchy root, on the other hand, is used to make normal fufu.
Due to the absence of bad fats and sugar, the fufu is not grainy, making it a healthier product. Due to the fufu not being mashed, it is also simpler to stomach.
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Is Fufu a fattening food?
Whether or not fufu is a fattening food depends entirely on one’s genetics and physiology.
While some people think that fufu is indeed a fattening food, others say that there was no visible evidence of weight gain for them.
Disregarding body chemistry and focusing mainly on the content of fufu, fufu is meant to be a fattening food as it contains lots of starch. It also contains fats and proteins, among other Vitamins and minerals.
If you’re considering weight loss, then please avoid the tempting soft feel of Fufu on your palms, but if you’re considering weight gain, then I would highly recommend eating Fufu with your soups instead of other substitutes like rice or plantain.
If you also have a potassium deficiency, eat Fufu; doctors think that Fufu has a high potassium level.
Fufu is also healthy despite being one to make you gain weight being that it doesn’t contain lots of cholesterol as other foods that help you gain weight—thinking healthy+weight gain? Try eating fufu with all your soup.
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