A Jollof Rice Competition was organized by the Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA) as part of activities marking the Jollof Festival over the weekend. The event saw participants from the West African origin battle for the best jollof rice title, hoping to end the long-lasting Jollof wars.
Dubbed the “See Ghana, Eat Ghana, Wear Ghana, and Feel Ghana” campaign, the GTA event featured Ghana, Gambia, Nigeria, and Senegal.
These countries were well represented by their people who hopefully cheered in anticipation of a win. Still wondering how Gambia won the Jollof Rice competition? proceed to find out.
Gambia prepared the jollof rice without tomatoes but with mustard, fish and other ingredients, making their Jollof yellowish-white as compared to Ghana, who used tilapia, tomatoes, and other ingredients to make their Jollof attractive and tasty, giving it a reddish color.
Nigeria and Senegal who also who used ingredients they believed could make their Jollof super and delicious failed to grab the winning title, failed to grab the crown.
Some of the Jollof prepared at the event included; Kontomire black eye bean Jollof, Smoked Tuna and Vegetable Jollof, Beef Jollof and Egg plant koobi Jollof.
A Friendly Competition
While many may think the competition was truly out to crown the best, organizers have stated that the Jollof competition was only a campaign aimed at unifying, as well as showcasing Ghana’s cultural heritage to the world.
Mrs. Felicia Aniagyei, the Acting Public Relations Manager of the GTA, in an interview with the Ghana News Agency, said the Jollof Competition, which falls under the “Eat Ghana” module, was to encourage Ghanaians to be proud of their local dishes and patronize them wherever they went.
Ms Aniagyei noted that engaging other African countries in the competition were to help showcase the varieties of jollof rice and deepen the relationship between the participating countries.
While this month has been dedicated to the “Eat Ghana” module while next month, September, would be for the “Wear Ghana” module, followed by the “Feel Ghana” in October.
Jollof Rice Competition: Long-Lasting Jollof Wars
Jollof rice is one of the most common dishes in West Africa consumed throughout the region including Senegal, Gambia, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Liberia, Togo, Cameroon, Mali, and Ghana.
In recent times, Nigeria and Ghana have laid major claims to the origin and ownership of Jollof, but some historians traced its origin to Senegambia, which was ruled by the Jolof Empire. This argument about the origin of Jollof Rice has become a culturally sensitive issue between Nigerians and Ghanaians.