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Local Food: T.Z.

Tuo Zaafi, also known as T.Z. has its origin from the Hausa Language. The word “Tuo” means stirring or paddling while the workd “Zaafi” means hot. Tuo Zaafi is not only popular in Ghana, but also across some other parts of west Africa in countries like Nigeria, Burkina – Faso, Mali, and Niger.

Tuo Zaafi is a staple food in the northern parts of Ghana and unlike other local foods, such as banku, fufu, and yam, T.Z. cannot be found on the menu of various restaurants across the country. It was not until quite recently that some restaurants started adding it to their menus.

Tuo Zaafi is commonly made with corn flour or millet flour. It is soft in nature and a little sticky. It is normally eaten with any soup of your choice, but the most common soup associated with T.Z. is “Ayoyo” or dry okra, which is also known as “busheshe kebewa.” The ingredients are very affordable and available at all times.

How to make T.Z.

You will need:

  • Corn or millet flour

  • Water

  • Shea butter (optional)

  • Large cooking pot

  • Large mixing bowl

  • Wooden spatula

  • Calabash

  • Heat source (gas or coal)

  1. Put you cooking pot on the heat.

  2. Pour some amount water in the pot depending on the number of people you are cooking for

  3. Cover the pot and bring the water to boil.

  4. While the water is on the fire, take some of your flour and mix it with cool water to make a watery paste, but it should not be light.

  5. Now, pour the paste into the boiling water, stirring until you have a uniform solution.

  6. Cover and leave to boil about five minutes depending on you heat source.

  7. Once it is boiling, remove part of the mixture into a bowl.

  8. Start stirring the remaining porridge on the fire with your wooden spatula. Keep adding flour as your stir. Keep adding until you get a thick paste that is smooth without lumps.

  9. Now you may slowly add the porridge that you removed earlier slowly, while still stirring as it becomes lighter.

  10. Leave it on the fire for another five minutes.

  11. Now your T.Z. is done and ready to serve. After dishing out your T.Z., you may add your shea butter to the top as a garnish and to keep it from sticking to your fingers.

How to make Ayoyo Soup and Stew:

  • Ayoyo (jute) leaves

  • Water

  • Salt

  • Pepper

  • Powdered fish

  • Dawadawa

  • Onions

  • Fresh tomatoes

  • Tomato Paste

  • Maggie cube

  • All purpose spice

  • Ginger

  • Garlic

  • Palm oil

  • Meat of choice

  1. Put water in a pot on your heat source to start warming up.

  2. Wash ayoyo leaves thoroughly and chop into tiny pieces.

  3. Add salt, pepper, dawadawa, powdered fish to the water.

  4. When the water starts to boil, add you ayoyo leaves and stir periodically

  5. As you are stirring, your leaves will become slimy and bubbly. Continue to stir until it settles. You don’t want it to boil over.

  6. When the soup stops rising, it means your ayoyo leaves are cooked. Remove from the fire and set aside.

  7. Next, cut your meat into pieces. Steam your meat with chopped onion, garlic, ginger, and spices to taste. Add your oil, chopped tomatoes, and tomato paste to make your stew.

  8. After stew is finished, you can either pour the soup into the stew or serve them separately.

  9. Pour your soup and stew on top of your T.Z. and enjoy! Source:

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