B, D at 182nd-183rd Sts.
At Papaye, a spotless West African diner, the soundtrack is Afropop, the flat-screen broadcasts European soccer, the lingua franca is Ashanti Twi (a West African dialect spoken primarily in Ghana), and most customers use fufu (cassava and plantain dumplings) instead of forks. Nestled among the bodegas and 99-cent stores on the Grand Concourse and frequented by the neighborhood’s growing Ghanaian population, Papaye is Mr. & Mrs Osei Bonsu’s second restaurant in the Bronx (the couple opened their first location in 2005). Plump ladies in plastic hair nets dish up most of the 21 items on the wall-mounted menu from a steam table, but dishes like peanut soup and okra beef stew can take the constant heat. Tilapia—grilled and served whole, blanketed with raw onions and fresh tomatoes—and jollof rice, loaded with palm oil, cayenne pepper, and tomatoes, come with a side of smoky chile relish that you’ll want to slather over everything on your plate.Recommended Dishes
Grilled tilapia with jollof rice, $18