Kelewele at the Osu night market
I made a mental note to visit the Osu night market after one of my favourite food and travel writers, Anthony Bourdain, visited it when he filmed a documentary in Ghana. In that documentary his infectious enthusiasm for the night market as he tried its spicy dishes had me salivating. He met with Auntie Grace at the market. They enjoyed a local delicacy of spinach, pork belly, rice and beans with spaghetti noodles.
The Osu night market is all about street food and is a few minutes walk from the famous Accra Oxford street. Ghanaians are super friendly so getting directions from the Oxford street to the market was easy. I wondered what I’ll encounter at this market. Was it touristy? Will the food be as great as it seemed on TV? What dishes did the market have in offer? These and many other questions flooded into my consciousness.
Osu night market was definitely not touristy. It looked way too small and inconspicuous. We actually walked passed it without realising that we had. We did ask a local who redirected us back to it.
I got off the street and walked right through the market to the obvious surprise of a couple of the sellers. Back there I could see large bowls of Kenkey in preparation as some the sellers either slept or sat relaxing.
My friends and I got domedo (roast pork) as takeaway. We never quite got over the strong smell of the pork. This we suspected was an aged boar.
We bought kelewele after the domedo. the kelewele tasted devine with its strong ginger and chilly flavours. As we walked back onto the Osu Oxford street a local who we had asked for directions earlier asked if we had found the night market ok. Another display of Ghanaian hospitality no doubt. The Osu night market, however, was no where near as grand or at the very least on the scale I thought it was on. It made me wonder why Anthony Bourdain had gone there. What it had going for it was bags and bags of untapped potential both for locals and tourists. It looked run down when it should be Accra’s foremost food night market. It looked tarty and dishevelled with more than a doze of uncleanliness when it should be strutting alongside its illustrious Couzin the Osu Oxford street. Will I go back? Perhaps but only because the kelewele was that good!