Fufu, that marvelously mouth-watering dish that West Africans introduced to the world, now has a special holiday to honor it as it takes its place among the world’s most iconic cuisines.
Held yearly on August 11th, International Fufu Day coincides with West Africa’s traditional yam festival, which takes place each year during August, the region’s rainy season. Since yams are one of the traditional ingredients of this regional favorite, August is the perfect time to celebrate this wonderful finger food.
Fufu’s popularity has taken off in recent years, with even the Food Network and The Spruce Eats getting in on the act. It’s no wonder. The rich, cooked-dough-like dish has spread across the region and the world, varying by name and ingredients to suit local tastes and availability.
One thing all its variations have in common, though: It’s a food you simply must eat with your hands. To eat fufu like a pro, you first pinch off a bite-sized piece of dough, roll it into a ball, and then indent it with your thumb. Dip it into a bowl of delicious stew and savor the delightful blend of textures and flavors.
One of the most common staple dishes in West Africa, fufu makes its appearance in tables in Ghana, Senegal, Gambia, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Liberia, Togo, Cameroon, and Mali. It spread to the Western Hemisphere during the colonial period, becoming a favorite dish in Cuba, Jamaica, the Dominican Republic, Haiti, and Puerto Rico.
Yams, of course, are one of the more common ingredients, but other tropical starchy foods, too, have made their appearance in various recipes. Cassava, plantains, malanga, semolina, maize and other starches all have found their way into fufu, depending on local availability. Fufu usually is served with a bowl of savory soup or stew, the types varying regionally.
Taking place during the August rainy season in which West Africa’s annual yam festival happens, International Fufu Day takes place on August 11. Inspired by the book The Art of Fufu, International Fufu Day will help spread the word about this healthy, hearty dish.
The Art of Fufu's mission is to shine a light on this traditional staple dish, which has become a favorite in its native Africa, then in the Caribbean, and is now beginning to appear in menus all over the world.
Get together with some friends and come on out to an African, Carribean or make it at home. We’ll explore various types of fufu and pair them perfectly with delicious soups. If you’ve never eaten fufu before, you’re in for a treat! We’ll teach you how to make it, roll it, and eat it like the locals do.
If you’re not in the Houston area, find a recipe on Theartoffufu.com, invite your friends, and discover this delicious cuisine together.