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Exploring Gambian Cuisine: Chew Dew Tirr(Smoked Catfish Stew)

My Magazine 2024/07
1 min
Chew Dew Tirr is a beloved dish in Gambian cuisine, known for its rich flavours and hearty ingredients. The main ingredient is smoked catfish, which imparts a distinct, smoky flavour. The fish is often accompanied by a variety of vegetables such as tomatoes, onions, okra, cabbage, cassava and eggplant. Spices like garlic, hot peppers, and seasoning cubes are added to enhance the flavour.


  • Cat Fish
  • Red Snapper
  • Tomato Paste
  • Bay Leaves
  • Salt
  • Black Pepper
  • Seasoning Cube
  • Palm Oil
  • Tomatoes
  • Hot Peppers
  • Green Peppers
  • Carrots
  • Spring Onions
  • Onions
  • Cabbage
  • Cassava
  • Okra
  • Garlic cloves
  • Egg Plant/Garden Eggs


1. Clean and wash the fish and season it with lemon juice, vinegar and salt.
2. Pound the black pepper, garlic, onions, spring onions and green peppers coarsely using the mortar and pestle. Or you could use a food processor.
3. Heat palm oil and add chopped tomatoes and the pounded onion mixture.
4. Next add all the vegetables and seasonings and stir.
5. Finally add the catfish and red snapper, cover and allow to simmer so that the fish and vegetables can absorb the flavours. The fish is already smoked so avoid overcooking or the fish will break.

Chew Dew Tirr is typically served with rice, couscous, or fufu (a dough-like staple made from cassava, yam, or plantain). 

This stew is not just a meal but a reflection of Gambian culinary traditions and the resourcefulness of its people.

Did you know?

that the My Gambia team has created a whole library of videos with traditional Gambian dish recipes?

If you want to learn how to prepare more delicious Gambian meals, we invite you to subscribe to our YouTube channel and stay informed whenever we create new ones.



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