Pepe & yam are a marriage made in heaven. Just like strawberries n cream, bread n butter, sushi n wasabi, fish n chips, pizza n cheese .. .. .. .The first time when i came to Accra i was offered this wonderful dish and i cant tell u how much i enjoyed it.And then every time i went anywhere I’d order this.It was towards the end of my trip that i realized that yam is a very starchy carbohydrate and all that goes straight down to the ass n belly.Too late huh ! And ever since then i make yam only on special occasions.I’ve been here since the last 2 months and i realized as i passed this guy down here that i hadn’t eaten yam this season and so i thought might as well buy some.So i bought the smallest one u see on the extreme left hand corner.

Yam is being cultivated in Africa since 8000B.C. This carbohydrate rich root vegetable resembles a tube and are also known as a potato substitute.The yam is crucial to survival in these regions as it can be sored in a cool dry place for up to 6 months without refrigeration which makes it a valuable source of food during the rainy season. Yam can be served boiled, fried or pounded into a paste.My personal favourite is fried yam chips and yam balls

These are by far the hottest chillis i have ever eaten.Never even seen these outside Africa but after checking it in wikipedia i learnt that they are grown in the Caribbean as well, known as the bonnet chilli . But here in Ghana we call it Pepe !Did you that chillis are rich in vitamin C and are believed to have beneficial effects on health.Well like i need another excuse to eat chillis !So for those who don’t have the courage to let this capsicum flame up their digestive system I’d suggest u wait for my next post … haha just kidding .. no u can still eat the yam !
So now that I’ve told u about Pepe and yam lets get down to the recipe.

The yam has a tough skin to peel and sometimes leaves your hands all itchy.Therefore i slice them and let them soak in salted water for about 15 mins to get rid of any toxins that might be in it.

Deep fry it, just like you fry French fries.Drain off the excess oil on a kitchen towel.

This is the Ghanaian mortar and pestle “Ayeuva” It is made of clay and has these grooves within to aid the grinding process.I just love this tool.

  • 1 big tomato
  • 1/2 an onion
  • 3-4 chillis
  • 1 big clove garlic
  • salt

Grind it all together to get this consistency.Now this can be eaten as it is , or u can fry it in 1 tablespoon of oil for about 2 mins.This way it will preserve and stay for 2-3 days.Both of them are tasty but I’d reckon that u consume the fresh one as soon as you can.

Here it is my friends,Yam with both the fresh and fried Pepe.Ultimate thing to eat while watching a cricket match.By the way I lost again on the last match Zimbabwe vs Ireland.It was a draw, just my luck. So150$ down. I have temporarily suspended all betting as crazy things are happening this world cup.Latest is that Pakistan is out of the competition and has returned home and a first time ever new team has trashed them reaching the top 8.India too has lost against Bangladesh … shame on them.

This is my favourite part, getting a buzz from the Pepe like riding a roller coater…leaves you high for a while …call it the chilli high.

Yam chips…crispy outside soft and tender inside.
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Comment : (Helene)

What a beautiful post. Your porse, the description and best of all, the colors! Makes my day brighter! (Brilynn)

I love your little yam stacks! And I’m all for a chili sauce that gives you a high! (Melody)

Wow, I think I’m getting an amazing rush from the pic of the sauce! I love this photo.. (Susan)

Those peppers remind me of the intensely fiery habaneros. Have you had those? I eat them very carefully! I love the photos! (Linda)

this is so interesting. thank you for sharing!!! and a very lovely photo series at that! (Varun)

Come fast to hk…I miss u both…Ur a fab cook and by da looks of it u can teach me photography too now… (The Food Traveller)

I just saw you comment on my blog and followed the link. Really really nice!! I see you use spices I still have to manage to fully understand, so I will be very happy to try your recipes!! (Asha)

I love the Pestle and Mortar!!Beautiful.LOve your blog.Thanks for the recipes:)) (Dianne)

Nice pics Kate, the yam chips look really gorgeous!

🙂 (Monisha)

Your pestle and mortar -‘Ayeuva’ is simply beautiful, I love the fact that it is grooved and wide to give room for all the grinding. The pepe looks delicious and hot! (ros)

Nice presentation!

I don’t see many yams here but I think I might go and look for them in the African speciality stores. I love the idea of the bonnet salsa. It is just the kind of thing that I love but sends my boyfriend running away in terror. (Kate)

Thank you … all…

Helene – i’m glad it brightened your day 🙂

Brilynn – the chilli high is one of my fav. highs !

Melody …teh rush frm the pic is nothing compared to the rush frm the real stuff !

Susan i have tried those…love ’em too…anything spicy n i have to eat it !

Linda…always a pleasure !

Varun…be prepared i’m comming

Food traveller i could learn a thing or two frm u.

Asha this tool is so fantastic i cant even tell u.i use it for chutneys n pestos as well.excellent result.

Dianne thanks u i’m glad u like d them

Monisha the first time i saw it i knew it was a keeper.Very very helpful tool in the kitchen.

Ros…haha now why do u want your boyfriend running off…!i’m sure u’ll find the yam in African stores as gr8 west Africa thrives on their exports of tubular roots,Yam being the top one. (ces)

great shots! make me crave for those crispy yams! love the vivid red against the yam! (ooishigal)

Your post is great, j’adore! 😀 (Rasa Malaysia)

I love your criss-cross pictures…so artistic and creative! 🙂 (Akhil Almeida)

Loved all the pics. The food looks incrdibly delicious. Now I gotta go get myself somn’ to eat.

Thx Kate 🙂 (Anonymous)

surprised to see this – french fry like yam sticks – a staple in kerala.



Hi – I came across your blog by accident, searching for pix for a project for my kids at school and it made me so homesick. I grew up in Ghana but now live in Indonesia. I love your pictures and recipes. I have never seen Yam and Pepe presented so attractively. Love your blog!


love the way you portray ghanaian cuisine! never overhyped but very stylish. And your ingredients stay true to the original. You’re a blessing…


love the way you portray ghanaian cuisine! never overhyped but very stylish. And your ingredients stay true to the original. You\’re a blessing…


Thank you AMA ! That is so sweet of you ????

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