#125: Togo – Gboma Dessi

One thing I’ve learned through this effort is that while a region of the world may use the same ingredients in similar ways, there is a lot of room for diversity in flavor and this week’s country, Togo, surprised me in that way. On its surface, this Gboma Dessi seems like most other chicken dishes I’ve encountered in Africa but with some slight differences which I think made a world of difference. As an aside, this can also be prepared with beef. Instead of peanuts, this used ground pumpkin seeds as a binder. Also, the spice blend was slightly different but gave a similar savory flavor I’ve seen time and time again in these dishes-cardamom and ginger played heavily here with the addition of anise. And while the recipe called for an optional smoked meat addition, I elected against it. And instead of the usual rice accompaniment, I tried some polenta at the suggestion of the recipe. It was just different enough that I had renewed excitement in upcoming simple chicken dishes. It’s amazing how just a few small tweaks can make something new again.

Recipe I used: https://spicebreeze.com/blog/togolese-gboma-dessi-recipe/

Level of Effort: 2

Skill Level: Beginner

Would Make it Again? Yes

Additional Notes: This recipe offered two different methods (quick or long) to cooking. Even though I made this on a weeknight, I recommend considering the “long version” listed in the recipe as I think it was a bit easier to ensure that the chicken was cooked without trying to fry it for a long time and smoke up my kitchen.

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