Check out our blog post on January 27, 2014 and join the select group invited to help test the recipes for our upcoming book on Ghana’s regional cooking. If you would like to contribute to this effort, download this form and send it to A new Pinterest site has just been set up to share the results of the recipe testing (plus you can try your hand at food styling).

Akwaaba! Welcome to BETUMI: The African Culinary Network.(BAY-two-me is an Akan word meaning “can do.”) Since 1997 this site (formerly Ananse’s Web: The African Culinary Network) has been connecting scholars, professionals and others who delight in African cuisine and food history. This is a space to discover, document, and share information on the vast and fascinating culinary heritage of Africa. Feel free to explore the site and join our on-line community.

 AcademIK Connections interview of Betumi founder Fran Osseo-Asare

LINK TO ARCHIVES (journal entries prior to February, 2006)

News and Notes  


(July 16, 2013) RELAUNCH SOON! If you’ve been here before, or if this is your first visit, please note that BETUMI is being updated and will soon be relaunched with a new look. When we began in 1997, there were very few African culinary sites devoted to celebrating, educating  and promoting conversations about African cuisines and foodways. By 2013, the landscape is entirely different, and the site wishes to  support and strengthen the network and community comprised of African food writers, bloggers, vloggers,  podcasters, food historians, professionals, suppliers, entrepreneurs, farmers, etc. We’re excited, and hope you’ll be a part of this new venture.

You can now follow BETUMI on twitter and  YouTube.

  • There is a 2012-13 brochure of currently available services of BETUMI: The African Culinary Network. Contact for more information. Click here  to download the pdf version. Please contact us at  if you require a press kit.
  • Tim Carman featured West African cuisine and interviewed me [Fran Osseo-Asare] extensively in an article in The Washington Post on February 29, 2012 (“It’s all in the mix.”)
  • I recently returned from IFT12, the Institute of Food Technologists annual conference in Nevada in June, speaking on “Beyond Peppers, Peanuts, and Palmfruit: The Multilayered Tastes and Textures of African Cuisines.” See betumiblog post for July 4, 2012.
  • 6. I spent 6 weeks in Abuja, Nigeria at the African University of Science and Technology teaching technical writing and communications during January and February, 2012.

Other activities included numerous talks (e.g., The Textile Museum in Washington DC on Central African cuisine in December, 2011; “African tea” for Women’s Studies class at Penn State, Dec., 2011; featured speaker at Ag2Africa, at PSU, August 2011); and writing (e.g., book review on James McCann’s Stirring the Pot: A History of African cuisine in Gastronomica, Aug. 1, 2011; article “African Cuisine 2.0? in b.SpiritMagazine Nov.-Dec. 2010.)

News from a couple of years ago:

“A Taste of Ghana” in the Fall 2010 Issue of ICIK (Interinstitutional Consortium for Indigenous Knowledge) E-News» Download pdf file

March 3, 2010: West African Cooking Class, State College, PA; March 18, 2010: South African Cooking Class, State College, PA; March 19, 2010; Fran Osseo-Asare selected by as Top Food Blogger and interview on African Food Culture posted on their site

April 6, 2010: article on groundnut soup written and posted for; April 28, 2010; Interinstitutional Consortium on Indigenous Knowledge (ICIK) seminar at Penn State “Asankas to Maggi Cubes: Ghanaian Cookbooks as Sources for African Food History”

June 3, 2010 – July 3, 2010: Finalizing Ghanaian cookbook, doing research and photography in Tema, Ghana

July 4, 2010 – August 3, 2010: Teaching technical writing course at the African University of Science and Technology, Abuja, Nigeria and researching Nigerian cuisine

Sub-Saharan African Cuisine and Western Perceptions Presentation at the joint annual meeting of the Association for the Study of Food and Society (ASFS) and the Agriculture, Food, and Human Values Society (AFHVS), June 8, 2006, Boston » Slides

“Milestone in African food studies

Fran Osseo-Asare’s book on the food and culture of Sub-Saharan Africa was released in July 2005 by Greenwood Press. A book for us all.

» Press Release » Order Now » Review1 » Review2

We Eat First With Our Eyes”: On Ghanaian Cuisine

An overview and investigation that ranges from fufu to palm oil to West African conceptions of hospitality. Originally published in the Winter 2002 issue of Gastronomica. » Abstract » Full Text

Beyond Gumbo: A History of Ghanaian Cookbooks

A look at Ghana’s culinary history as portrayed in cookbookspublished in the latter half of the 20th century. This working draft analyzes variations among cookbook authors, publishers, and audiences.

» Abstract » Full Text

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