My ultimate childhood comfort food - I absolutely love this sauce! And here's a way to fast-forward a few steps to reach the desired result faster.
1 tablespoon groundnut oil
1 onion, finely diced
1 tablespoon extra-hot chilli powder
1 tablespoon curry powder
1 garlic clove, crushed
5 cm (2 inch) piece fresh root ginger, grated (unpeeled if organic)
1 red Scotch Bonnet chilli, pierced
3 tablespoons crushed roasted peanuts
2 teaspoons sea salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
500 ml (18 fl oz) uncooked Chalé Sauce
500 ml (18 fl oz) good-quality vegetable stock (you can use chicken or beef stock if adding the sauce to a meat dish)
100-200g (3 1/2-7 oz) organic peanut butter, depending on how thick you want the sauce
8 green kpakpo shito (cherry) chillies, or substitute green habanero chillies
Heat the groundnut oil in a heavy-based saucepan, add the onion and saute over a medium heat for 2 minutes. Stir in the chilli powder and curry powder, then add the garlic, ginger, Scotch Bonnet, crushed peanuts, sea salt and black pepper and stir well - lots of punchy aroma should be rising from the pot at this point.
Stir in the chalé sauce and vegetable stock and bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes.
Add the peanut butter 1 tablespoon at a time, while stirring, until it has all dissolved, then use a stick blender to blend all the ingredients to a smooth consistency.
Add the whole kpakpo shito chillies to the sauce and leave to simmer over a low heat for at least a further 30 minutes before serving, or leave to cool and then store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.
Alternatively, freeze for future use. You can then simply reheat as much sauce as needed at the time as a side dip, or create a soup by adding diced yams and plantain or cooking meat in the sauce for a more substantial meal.
TIP: I often leave the peanut sauce to simmer for up to 2 hours so that the flavours really infuse, but 30-40 minutes is good enough.
Reprinted with permission from Zoe's Ghana Kitchen by Zoe Adjonyoh. Copyright 2017, Mitchell Beazley. Photographs by Nassima Rothacker.
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