11 Creative Ways to Eat Gari

It’s easy to commit to the same old pattern with garriーsoak in cold water with a few groundnut seeds or make into eba and fire-up with kpomo rich egusi soup perhaps? Break free of your garri groove. Here are 11 inspiring ways to make sure you’re exploring the grains to the fullest.

But before we dive straight into that, i feel it’s important to give a brief background on the garri food; explaining what it is and how it tastes like for the benefit of those who are foreign to the food or just want to build on their local knowledge.

So,


What is garri?

Garri is a dry cream-white flour mainly consumed in West Africa. It is obtained by processing the starchy tuberous root of freshly harvested cassava in a sequence of demanding steps involving: peeling, washing, crushing, fermenting, drying and frying.



The by-product of this tedious process is a dry cream-white flour, but can also be pale yellow depending on whether yellow cassava root was employed during the process or palm oil was added in any of fermenting or frying stage.

In West Africa, there are three varieties of garri produced.

  1. Ijebu Garri: This type of garri is subjected to a longer fermentation (about 5-7 days), and has a highly acidic taste. It’s mainly produced and consumed by the Yoruba people of the Ijebu region in Nigeria.
  2. The White Garri: This type of garri is obtained by processing the starchy tuberous roots of white cassava and it has a gleaming white appearance. It can be made into different levels of fermentation depending on the region where it is produced.
  3. The Yellow Garri: This type of garri is obtained by processing the starchy tuberous roots of yellow cassava and it has a striking yellow coloration. It can also be made by the addition of palm oil in any of fermenting or frying stage of the production of white garri. Yellow garri is nutritionally superior to white garri (particularly in vitamin D), and can come in different levels of fermentation depending on the region where it is produced.

Learn more about garri and how to make one in our detailed guides here:




What does garri taste like?

The taste of garri can range from bland to acidic sour depending on the level of fermentation. The level of fermentation is basically how long a bag of cassava mash is left to sit on an elevated rack. The longer the days, the less toxic and more sour the resulting garri becomes.

Garri with a higher starch content is generally preferred when making “swallow dishes”, because it “pulls” more and better when it comes in contact with hot water. Others with lesser starch content are best suited for soakings or vegetable preparations.

Now that you know what garri is and how it tastes like, its time to begin our list of 11 creative ways you can “flex” it.


11 creative ways to eat garri


1) Garri Soakings

One of the popular ways garri is consumed across West Africa is as a cereal with cold water and some sweetening and crunchy additions.

Soaked gari is an excellent option for lunch especially when you’re looking for something light and sustainable. It can serve as a great appetizer as well as dessert.

Garri and groundnut

How to soak garri:

You can properly soak garri using these four easy steps.
  1. Pour fine gari into a bowl and add water till submerged. (1 or 2 inches)
  2. Stir a bit, allow to settle and then sieve out the floating grains and dirt.
  3. Repeat step as many times as you wish to obtain clean garri.
  4. Add or remove water to match the type of consistency you like.

Note: You can use lukewarm water or ice cold water.

Now depending on your taste, budget and dieting, you can polish up the cereal with any of these.

Garri with sweetener

It could be sugar, honey, maple syrup, stevia or whatever your healthy diet dictates.

Garri with milk

If you’re not allergic and its budget friendly, i totally recommend it. You can opt for milk in any of its evaporated, powdered or condensed form.



All the crunchy

Any of Fried/Roasted/Grilled–beef, fish, shrimp, kilishi, and suya. Cookies like chin-chin, biscuit, kuli-kuli, or any crunchy that wouldn’t muddle the taste of gari the way you like it would be an excellent addition. How you eat the combo is totally up to you. One thing is certain, there will be crunchiness on one side and mushiness on the other. Oh heaven!

Garri with nuts and fruits

Tiger nut, cashew nut, peanut, coconut, groundnut and your favourite fruits are all ways to blow life to the cereal.

Garri with bread and akara

Thanks to its binding nature and soft texture when soaked, gari is a perfect combination with any of bread, okpa, moi-moi and akara.

Garri with bean porridge

For extra bulk, taste and protein in every mouthful, you should consider sparing 5 minutes to make bean porridge. I can’t explain how well this complements.

Also, instead of bean porridge, you can opt for a simple sauce like chicken sauce, vegetable and beans sauce or any soup you’re pretty confident should blend well.


2 Gari and soup (Eba)

Garri and soup
Photo Credit: landmarkhotels.com.ng

This classic Nigerian swallow dish showcases how incredibly gari can transition from a light appetite-soothing meal to a heavy one.

How to make eba:

You can make eba using these two simple steps.
  1. Bring water to a boil in a large pot.
  2. Sprinkle in the gari and cook–stirring constantly until it becomes a paste similar to mashed potato consistency. You can sprinkle paprika or grounded pepper, mix with mashed boiled plantain or add anything you feel would make the lump less boring.



You can eat eba or eba-plantain with richly made soups like:

  • Egusi soup
  • Okro soup
  • Ogbono soup
  • Vegetable soup
  • Biitterleaf soup
  • Oha soup

3. Gari Salad or Sauce

Another way to have gari when you’re craving for grainy−infused with savoury taste.

Garri salad or sauce

How to make gari salad:

  1.  Sprinkle gari with a bit of water to soften, then season lightly.
  2. Add the softened gari to your favourite salad mix.
  3. Combine and enjoy.

 or, you can go the old school route (for those that understand)

  1. Sprinkle fine gari with a bit of water to soften.
  2. Add groundnut/kuli-kuli pepper, suya pepper or finely chopped raw pepper.
  3. Add diced onions, tomato and a bit of red oil.
  4. Add salt/maggi.
  5. Combine and enjoy.
For those who like to take matters to the oven and frying pan, the remaining recipes on this page are for you.

You can try gari flour recipes like:




4 Gari Forto (Gari Jollof)

Mixing gari with tomato sauce and veggies is a quick way Ghanaians love to enjoy gari. This Jollof can be eaten as a main dish or an accompaniment for rice or beans (Try recipe here)

gari-jollof
Photo Credit: oyooquartey

 


5 Gari Cake Recipe

A classic boarding school cooking memory you can revive in your kitchen. It only takes about 1hr 30 minutes to make this breathtaking yum! (Try recipe here)
garri-cake recipe
Photo credit: 9jafoodie.com

6 Wainar Rogo

While you’re making eba, set aside a part to make this beautiful cookie to round out the meal.

The different shapes is another easy way for your kids to memories their geometric shapes!

How to make wainar rogo

With fine gari:

  1. Get a sustainable amount of fine gari and sprinkle it in a bowl containing hot water.
  2. Cover the bowl and pour out the excess hot water. (or simply add hot water to the fine gari till its about the same consistency as eba)
  3. Add finely chopped onions/pepper, season as you would like and mix for evenness.
  4. Cut in desired shapes, rest for 10 minutes and deep-fry in a hot vegetable or olive oil.
  5. Serve with grounded pepper or basic salad like (tomatoes + cucumber)



or

With raw Cassava:

  1. Get raw cassava, peel and boil till soft.
  2. Pound in a mortar or whatever you have- till pliable.
  3. Add finely chopped onions/pepper and season as you would like.
  4. Mix for evenness, cut in desired shapes and rest for about 10 minutes.
  5. Deep-fry in a hot vegetable or olive oil.

Maryam Al-Mansur — a contributor at arewacafeteria also has a great way to prepare this cookie so that it has more protein and nutrients͢ healthy for kids. (Try recipe here)


7. Gari Biscuit

A delicious baked dough of gari flour and other customary baking items. You can dip in soups or eat straight from oven. (Try recipe here)
Garri Biscuit
Photo Credit: whattocooktoday.com


8 Gari and Groundnut Cookie

A very good use for your left-over suya pepper is “gari-groundnut cookie”. This spicy crusty bake will surely keep your nail biting habit on the check. (Try recipe here)

Gari and Groundnut
Photo Credit: www.1qfoodplatter.com




9. Garrinola

You love granola? there are endless combinations to try and “garrinola” is one of them. Chioma Ikejiofor’s twist to granola– bakes garri grains rather than oats with oil, flavours and seeds, and then combine with fruits and nuts to serve in yoghurt or cold milk. (Try recipe here)

Garrinola
Photo Credit: www.mummysyum.com

10. Gari Chocolate Truffle

If you salivate from the thoughts of gari in milk and chocolate, then this truffles were made for you. Cream, chocolate and time is all it takes to make gari this elegant, decadent and delicious. (Try recipe here)
gari-chocolate-truffle
Photo Credit: Myactivekitchen.com

 


11. The ‘Garri’ Attieke Recipe

Attieke is an Ivorian cuisine prepared from fermented cassava pulp that has been grated or granulated.

What happens when you seriously carve Attieke and can’t wait a week or more to steam your fermented cassava?

Ndudu by Fafa teaches you how to improvise with garri and closely mimic the taste of the legendary Attieke recipe with her own twist.

Watch Video here:

What Else?

That’s all for now, if you have your own special recipe you wish to share with us, tell us about it in comment’s section below.

5 thoughts on “11 Creative Ways to Eat Gari”

  1. Thank you. I have a whole pack of Gari that I can cook know using your recipes. I tried Gari Dumplings in a Chicken Satai Bake a while ago. I cannot give you quantities as I was experimenting.
    1. Mix a bowl of Gari in with cold water and a tablespoon of savoury Peanut butter.
    2. Allow to stand for at least 30 minutes.
    3. Marinade cubed chicken pieces with tumeric, garlic, herbs, salt and coconut milk to taste for as long as you like 🙂
    4. Once you think your chicken is ready, pour chicken and marinade sauce into a deep casserole dish. *The dish should be small enough to allow your sauce to submerge the chicken cubes and dumplings.
    5. Take your dampened flavoured Gari and mold it into individual truffle or slightly bigger sized dumplings.
    6. Plop these into the casserole dish
    7. Bake in oven until your chicken is ready. Again, I can’t tell you how long this will take, I also cannot remember if I pre heated the oven. In any case, adventure!
    Enjoy

    Reply

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