I feel like having Accra! Haitian Accra is an appetizer that is a favorite of many natives. This appetizer or side dish is straightforward to make, but unfortunately, one can’t do enough to please a crowd of people, whether small or large. It is often served as part of “fritaille,” which is a variety of fritters, or alone as a snack.
There are many recipe variations for Haitian Accras. Almost everyone you ask will tell you that you need to have black-eyed peas, flour, and egg. I am not a fan of black-eyed peas, nor do I like to add flour to my Accra mixture. Flour and egg are used in cooking and baking as binding elements, but why do we always need to mix flour with this root vegetable already starchy?
I understand that flour and egg are used in cooking and baking as binding elements, but why do we always need to mix flour with this root vegetable already starchy.
Don’t get me wrong, and I will eat it whether it contains all the ingredients or not. It is just something that you have to eat when offered to you. Your stomach or mouth will not allow you to say no unless you are allergic to Malanga or Yautia.
What is malanga?
Malanga, also called yautia, is a root vegetable cultivated in several tropical regions, Haiti being one of them. Haitian people eat Malanga broiled, fried, or roasted. Depending on what they are cooking, it is always an excellent substitute for potatoes, a ubiquitous root vegetable.
A surprise culinary adventure
So one day, while surfing the net, I stumbled on an Accra recipe from “HaitianCulture.com.” I was glad to see that it did not require flour, egg, and black-eyed peas. It did not take me long to try the recipe at all.
When I made the Accra, I used a food processor instead of grating the Malangas. I was pleased with the taste and mainly the texture. It was crispy and light. The only downside to this is, you have to eat the fritters right away; otherwise, they will become soggy.
The next time I made it, I did not add the chicken bouillon but added a fresh spice mixture and added salt gradually until it was perfectly seasoned. So after adding my twist, I started thinking about other ways to make the fritters. I thought about BAKING! Yes, I did! I figured I would cut down on the oil to make it healthier.
So after adding my twist, I started thinking about other ways to make the fritters. I thought about BAKING! Yes, I did! I figured I would cut down on the oil to make it healthier.
Being a bit adventurous
The first time I baked it, the Accra lacked moisture. The second time I made it, I added extra virgin olive oil to the mixture and dots of butter before putting it in the oven. It passed the test! When baked, the Accra has a consistency of mashed potatoes except being a little bit grainier than smooth. Because the Accra was mixed with fresh spices, it had a good kick to it.
When baked, the Accra has a consistency of mashed potatoes except being a little bit grainier than smooth. Because the Accra was mixed with fresh spices, it had a good kick to it.
I know some of you may wonder why the accras bake when they’re always fried. Think of it as an original side dish and no oily mess to clean. Just add all the ingredients in a food processor, butter, or spray a couple of ramekins and bake in an oven at 375 Degree Fahrenheit for 25 to 30 minutes, and you are done.
For a spicier taste, or if you want to feel as if you are in the Caribbean, dip your Accra in any of Noubess hot and spicy sauces.
Enjoy Haitian Accra fried, the original way, and baked – my way!
- 1 lb malanga cut into 2.5cm (1″ pieces)
- 2 scallions chopped
- 2 cloves garlic
- 2 tablespoons parsley chopped
- 1 teaspoon thyme leaves only
- 2 tablespoons green peppers chopped
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon salt plus more to taste
- ½ tablespoon scotch bonnet pepper or Habanero. Chopped, seeds and membrane removed
- 1 – 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon olive oil if baking
- 2 cups vegetable oil if frying only
- Peel all Malangas and cut pieces into smaller 2.5cm (1″) cubes.
- Add to food processor.
- Add all ingredients also to food processor with the exception of oils.
- Blend all ingredients to a smooth mixture including olive oil if BAKING ONLY.
- Put mixture in a bowl, cover and let marinate in the refrigerator for 30 minutes or longer.
- Blend all ingredients to a smooth mixture.
- Remove and add to a bowl without olive oil if FRYING ONLY.
- Cover and let marinate in the refrigerator for 30 minutes or longer.
- Remove mixture from refrigerator and let stand at room temperature. If frying mix with flour and with 2 dinner spoons shape the accra and fry golden brown in hot oil. Serve hot.
- If baking – When ready, butter 2 – 3 ramekins.
- Fill ramekins with Accra mixture, do with butter and bake at 190°C / 375°F / Gas Mark 5 for 30 to 35 minutes.
- You may change the temperature of the oven to broil for the top to crisp, but no more than 5 minutes. Serve hot.
Please keep in mind that nutritional information is a rough estimate and can vary greatly based on the products used.
Nutrition info is automatically generated and provided as a courtesy and as an estimate only.