Tubani (Bean Cakes)

Tubani is a delicious Ghanaian dish made from black-eyed peas and typically steamed in banana leaves. It’s also known as “bean cakes” or “black-eyed pea cakes.” Here’s a basic recipe for preparing tubani:


  • 2 cups dried black-eyed peas
  • 1 medium-sized onion, finely chopped
  • 1-2 hot chili peppers (adjust to your spice preference), finely chopped (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground garlic
  • Salt to taste
  • Banana leaves or aluminum foil for wrapping
  • Cooking oil for greasing
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  1. Soak the black-eyed peas: Start by rinsing the dried black-eyed peas thoroughly in cold water. Then, place them in a large bowl and cover them with enough water to completely submerge them. Let them soak for at least 4 hours or overnight to soften.
  2. Prepare the banana leaves: If you’re using banana leaves, cut them into large square pieces and lightly pass them over an open flame to make them pliable and easier to work with. If you don’t have banana leaves, you can use aluminum foil instead.
  3. Drain and blend the black-eyed peas: After soaking, drain the black-eyed peas and transfer them to a blender or food processor. Add the chopped onion, hot chili peppers (if using), ground ginger, ground garlic, and a pinch of salt. Blend until you have a thick, smooth batter. You may need to add a small amount of water to achieve the right consistency, but be cautious not to make it too watery.
  4. Season the batter: Taste the batter and adjust the salt and spice level as needed. You can also add more onion, ginger, or garlic to suit your taste.
  5. Assemble the tubani: Take a piece of banana leaf or aluminum foil and grease it with a little cooking oil. Place a spoonful of the black-eyed pea batter onto the greased leaf/foil and fold it into a rectangular or square shape, ensuring it’s well sealed. Repeat this process until you’ve used up all the batter.
  6. Steam the tubani: Set up a steamer or a large pot with a steaming rack. If using a pot, add water to the bottom, but make sure it doesn’t touch the steaming rack. Arrange the tubani parcels on the steaming rack, leaving some space between them. Cover the pot and steam the tubani for about 45 minutes to 1 hour or until they firm up and become solid.
  7. Serve: Once cooked, remove the tubani from the steamer and let them cool slightly. You can serve them with spicy pepper sauce or any preferred dipping sauce.

Tubani is a popular street food in Ghana and is enjoyed for its unique flavor and texture. Enjoy your homemade Ghanaian tubani!

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