Another Saturday craft market trip, Accra

img_20190302_121635289092853.jpgAfter my scouting for groundnuts last Saturday, we went to the monthly craft market at the W.E.B. Dubois centre in Cantonments, Accra. First Saturday of each month. It is so much nicer than the old location at the Goethe Insitute, there is more room and more vendors. Very expat focused, there are crafts and fabric, clothes and soap, black soap, Ghana coffee, jewelery, carvings and paintings and overall a good selection if presents are needed.  Some of the same vendors are at other markets other weekends, but it is easy when they are all on one place this one day a month.  You bump into friends, talk to seamstresses, it is good fun.

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Glass beads. I have not been to a bead making place yet, but that is on my list. You can also find craft popsicles (5 cedi, about 0.9 USD),  yoghurt, bread and muffins, vegetables, drinks….. and yes, bagels! They are actually quite nice, though pricey at 6 cedi each. We always buy more and get a discount, which is very nice.  Today we were late, so they only had two kinds left.

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Mmmmm, toasted bagels….. I know how to make them, but when it’s a humid 33C it is such sweaty work…… My last bagels from New Year’s in London are safe in the freezer, but will be liberated soon to continue my pantry challenge.

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Oh, the colours and fabrics here! Wonderful! As my clothes from three years ago get increasingly ragged, they are replaced with some clothes in local fabrics. We do wonder when we would wear some of these later, but that will be an issue later.

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Batik: what would look good as what? 20 cedis a yard  (3.6 USD), three yards for  fabric for a full-skirted dress, two yards for a straight dress no sleeves.  I will have to think about this.  Same time, next month.

Saturday market in Accra

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Today is the first Saturday of the month, which means the monthly craft market at the Goethe Institute. Clothes, carvings, baskets, bagels, jewelry: perfect time to get some Christmas presents.

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Afrisocks were back in stock, some new patterns but socks for women are not available yet. When traveling for the holidays, lightweight gifts like these are very handy. I love the colours!

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Not from the Goethe market but from Global Mamas: a picture book I hope my niece in Ireland will enjoy, with great Ghana photos.  Now I just need to see who gets what of Ghana chocolate, cocoa nibs, batik bags and local coffee.

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Toys in local fabric. Lovely things, but it was hot and sticky  (32C, and very humid) so we escaped to Cafe Kwae for a cold drink.

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The “God is Able” food joint, in Cantonments.  Next Friday is Farmer’s Day in Ghana and a public holiday, so we might go away for the weekend. Good to get most of the holiday shopping out of the way, and done locally. Now I just need to dig out my small bag of warm clothes and thermal underwear, and imagine how cold Norway will be in two week’s time.  Brrrrr………..

Zucchini carrot ricotta-pesto rose tart, #3, and clothes shopping

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Fall! Crisp underfoot, leaves, pumpkin, bonfires…… Here in Accra there is no sense of fall, just temperatures creeping up after the rainy season and unseasonably early Christmas decorations in the supermarkets. Trees are flowering and I am so glad I stocked up on allergy medications while recently in Europe. As usual I brought some ricotta, which ended up in this rose tart. I first made this in 2013, which seems like ages ago. A little fiddly to make, but very satisfying.

Zucchini carrot ricotta-pesto rose tart, #3

One package ready-made puff pastry
3 zucchini
3 carrots
120 gr fresh pesto
250 gr ricotta
Salt, pepper

Roll out your dough into a pie dish. (Here it came with carta al forno, baking paper.)  Slice the zucchini and carrots lengthwise into long thin strips, with a potato peeler or a mandolin. Here I used a cheese slicer, which made the slices a little too thick. I doubled the ricotta and pesto and soldiered on.

Mix pesto and ricotta, half of each, with a little salt and pepper. Spread some ricotta-pesto mix on the strips of carrot and zucchini. I did this directly on the pastry. Roll the strips somewhat tightly together, so they looks like a rosebud. (Yes, albeit a pesto-smeared, green one.) This time I smeared some ricotta mix on the pastry base, which made it easier to assemble the rose roll when cooking alone.

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This is finicky, but the rolls held together well. Alternate carrot and zucchini, rolling until you have a good sized roll. Add last strips to fill the dish. Tuck the pastry edges over.
Bake at 180C until it looks done. Twenty minutes or so? Slice into wedges and enjoy. We did!

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For some colour: shirts at the small craft market at the WEB Dubois center. My wardrobe contents are gradually getting replaced by locally made clothes, generally tailored, but the craft markets are fun. After almost three years in Accra, sweating through clothes at least once a day, my old work tops are fraying and fading. However, my dress sense and current outfits are definitely getting brighter after three years in Accra. This time I bought a dark blue batik jacket with bell sleeves, relatively sober: definitely too hot for Accra, but this will be good for work trips where the airconditioning can be fierce (or absent), and layering can be key. This cost 120 Ghana cedis, which is about … 24.5 USD, with a bit of a discount. I find it hard to bargain as a privileged foreigner here, but love these textiles.

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Soon to be seen at a workshop somewhere!