The recipe to the famous Ghanaian Shito (Black Pepper). Shito simply means ‘Pepper’ in Ga, one of the Ghanaian lanuages. Before you decide on making this chilli sauce, make sure you have plenty of time (no rush), patience and a little bit of love, ‘cuz that’s all it takes!

Ingredients:

  • 1.5kg Onions 
  • Beef (optional)
  • 400g Tomato Paste
  • 2l Sunflower Oil
  • 20g Salt
  • 400g Powdered Pepper and/or Scotch Bonnet
  • 300g Powdered Ginger and/or Natural
  • 2-3 Shrimps Maggi Cubes
  • 2g Rosemary
  • 100g Powdered Shrimps (Optional)
  • 500g Powdered Amene ma 

Method:

  1. For those who want to add beef to their Shito, dice the beef into small pieces, wash them, season as desired (suggestion: 2tsp of Salt, 1 Maggi Cube, 1 Tbl of Powdered Pepper & Ginger) and cook for about 15 to 20 min. Some beefs are stubborn and might need longer, so worst case scenario, taste and see.
  2. Peel all the onions (might need goggles (bad joke)), wash them and cut them small enough to blend in the blender. Instead of adding water to blend, use oil. Avoid using water or as little as possible. Empty the paste from the blender and set aside.
  3. If natural ginger or scotch bonnet is being used: Peel the ginger, wash then cut into small pieces and place them in the blender (no need to rinse the onion paste off the blender). Wash the scotch bonnet and add them to the ginger in the blender. Use oil instead of water!
  4. The meat should be done cooking now! Drain it from the water and set it aside to air dry a bit.
  5. In a large saucepan, pour in the oil and let it heat up. 
  6. Fry the diced beef till it’s crunchy and dark brown on all sides. Best on a low heat, takes a while but you will get there. For those brave enough, if high or medium heat goes for you, that works too. Just be careful when stirring.
  7. Now that the beef is all crispy and dark down, remove it from the oil and set it aside.
  8. Carefully and slowly poor in the onion paste. Cook it for 45min to 1h on a low it. Till the onion turns brown and loses its moist. Don’t forget to constantly stir.
  9. Add the ginger paste/powder and the powdered pepper. Mix it all together and let it cook for at least 30min. Don’t forget to stir. 
  10. Now the tomato paste, Maggi cubes, rosemary and the Salt. Stir and let it cook. Still on a low heat, takes patience remember?
  11. Last of all the amane ma and powdered shrimps (optional). Stir

Due to the powdered ingredients, you may need more oil. If so add some more. Also, the oil preserves the Shito upto 6 months when stored. Now it gets to the hard part. Still on a low heat, let the whole sauce cook for at least 1h or 1h30min, while constantly stirring. You do not want it bottom burning. 

For preserving, put the Shito in an air tight container and store in in the fridge or freezer for when did. 

!!!! Do not ever scope with a wet spoon !!!!