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Why Ga people call kenkey “komi”


The original name for Ga kenkey is “Otim”. Before Governor Gordon Guggisberg introduced the corn milling machine (nika-nika) to the Gold Coast, the dough used to make kenkey was made from corn grains grounded between two stones (stone-mill).

With the new corn-mill machine, the Ga people started making “Otim” from corn dough milled from the corn-mill. So there was a new kenkey type in town, the corn-mill kenkey.

With everyone wanting to know what type of kenkey he was buying, corn-mill became associated with the new corn-mill kenkey.

But there was a problem; 😳 the Ga people could not pronounce the word “corn-mill” very well – they corrupted it. So gradually, corn-mill, corn-mill, corn-mill, became “komi”

“Komi” is simply a corrupted version of corn-mill.



Kenkey is mostly served with fish and Shitor


So if you were asked by your parents to go buy Kenkey, they will ascertain from you whether the Kenkey you went to buy was made from the stone mill or from the machine (corn mill).


A group of people eating Kenkey during the annual Kenkey Festival in Accra

So the name corn mill became associated with Kenkey and thus corn mill, corn mill, corn mill became adulterated and thus Kenkey transformed from otim to “komi”

That explains “Otimshinu”, right?


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About Frederick Noamesi