It turns out that poulet yassa is a traditional dish in both Senegal and Guinea, helping me catch up on the culinary aspect of my misadventures.
I decided to work from this version, though I also found a Guinean recipe that I decided I could also try if this one seemed promising but wasn’t quite the thing.
I needed to make some adjustments, not only because I’m only one person and cooking for 6 seemed like overkill (and a big risk with a new dish), but also because scotch bonnet peppers are not readily available to me. Fortunately, on a Google search it appears habanero or serrano peppers are comparable. Serrano peppers are not only available here, but were in my fridge. Win! (Fingers crossed they work as well as hoped.)
The other adjustment I needed to make to the recipe was because I only had whole grain/brown rice in my house. Healthier, and whatnot. Hopefully that won’t have made a large difference in my experience.
I have to say, my rice cooker is getting a lot more use than it did in the past. And the lemon juicer gadget I got myself post-Christmas (thanks again for the gift card!) was a great investment. But I digress…
While I cooked, I let YouTube stream me some Senegalese music, including Senegalese folk music: drums, and Amadeus Fall/Ame Kora Live Performance (Senegalese music), and Kora Trio Senegal:
I can’t say for sure, but it’s possible my kitchen smelled extra delicious because of the immersive experience.
And oh my gosh, did my kitchen smell goooood! I wish there was a way to share that with you!
So what was the verdict?
10/10 – will make again (and soon)! Like, I don’t know if I can bring myself to try the other version, because this one was so good!
In fact, I have just one regret: I should have gone ahead made it for 6 servings after all, instead of halving the recipe. I think I could eat this every day. (And to be fair, for a little while I will. Though perhaps not as many days as I should because it would be easy to overeat it, it’s so tasty.)
Since this Senegalese version of Chicken Yassa will be hard to beat, but technically I’m already in Guinea now… do you know any great Guinean recipes I should try? Let me know!