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Ghana Akotonshi (Stuffed Crabs)

Course Appetizer
Cuisine Ghana
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 4
Author International Cuisine


  • 2 lbs cooked crab meat or 4 whole crabs
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 inch piece of fresh ginger
  • 4 cloves
  • 4 tbsp cooking oil
  • 1 small onion minced
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 2 to matoes finely chopped
  • 1 Tablespoon tomato paste
  • 2 green bell peppers finely chopped
  • pinch of paprika
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon dried thyme leaves
  • ¾ tsp. grains of paradise ground to a powder (Optional)
  • 1 tsp minced African bird peppers use hot Thai peppers if unavailable, mashed to a paste
  • 1 tbsp dried shrimp
  • ½ cup plain breadcrumbs
  • 1 sprig parsley


  • If cooking whole crabs, clean them and bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add in the ginger, cloves and the crab, cook for 15 minutes. Remove crabs and meat, keep shells for plating. If using just crab meat Mix crab meat with ¼ cup water that has been boiled with the ginger piece and cloves for 15 minutes.
  • Drain water, flake the meat and set aside.
  • In a heavy pot, heat oil to medium temperature and add other ingredients in the following sequence, stirring for a minute or so between each: onions, ground ginger, tomatoes, tomato paste, green pepper, cumin, nutmeg, thyme, grains of paradise, paprika, mashed peppers, and dried shrimp.
  • Reduce heat and simmer for 4 – 5 minutes, stirring constantly, until vegetables are cooked.
  • Add crab meat and stir another couple of minutes to heat it through.
  • Then spoon the mixture into clean crab shells or ramekins (small individual baking dishes).
  • Sprinkle bread crumbs on top of each crab and toast under an oven broiler, being careful not to let the crumbs scorch.
  • Garnish with parsley.