Jollog Fonio
Recipe courtesy of Gabi Odebode for Food Network Kitchen

Jollof Fonio

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 35 min
  • Active: 20 min
  • Yield: 4 serving
Jollof rice originated in the Wolof or Jolof Empire in the Senegambian region, and today the dish of rice cooked in a tomato (or tomato and bell pepper) stew is one of the most recognized West African dishes around the world. Rice is not the only grain that can be used for jollof--jollof beans and jollof pasta are also popular. This version uses fonio, an ancient grain that's been cultivated for thousands of years in West Africa. Serve it on its own, or pair it with some vegetables, plantains and your favorite protein.



  1. Process the garlic, red bell pepper and onion in a blender or food processor until a coarse puree, about 30 seconds. You should have about 1 cup.
  2. Heat the oil in a medium pot over medium-high heat. Add the tomato paste and cook, stirring, until it starts to look grainy in the oil, about 5 minutes. Add the bell pepper puree and stir to combine. Cover, lower the heat to medium low and let the mixture simmer for 5 minutes. Add the curry powder, thyme, smoked paprika, bouillon powder, salt, cayenne pepper, if using, and bay leaves and stir to combine. Cover and let simmer for 5 minutes. Stir in the broth. Add the fonio and stir to combine. Cover the pot with aluminum foil, then put on the lid. Cook over medium-low heat until the water is absorbed, about 10 minutes. Use a fork to fluff the jollof fonio in the pot. Cover again with the foil and lid and let it cook for another 5 minutes. Transfer the fonio to a bowl. Serve by itself or with sauteed meat, vegetables and sweet plantains.