My Nigerian Tummy; Ogbono Soup

 

Hello again.

My kitchen activities have been majorly interrupted in these past days. I’ve had so many things on my hands – designing my website(never knew I could do that!), drawing up business plans, having meetings with my lawyers, I’m just really stretched! It’s all for good anyway, I’ll be making a big reveal when all the plans are put together.

Okay, to the business of today. I’m not sure how many of you are familiar with Nigerian soups but if you are, you’d know that Ogbono(Igbo name) or Apon(Yoruba name) soup is one of the favorites. Ogbono is the seed of the African/Wild mango but its ground to a powdery form before it can be used for the soup. It’s commonly called draw soup because of it’s stretchy characteristics.

Here’s the recipe below:

  • Palm oil (1 cup)
  • Ground Habanero peppers(to taste)
  • Dry Fish/Fish/Meat/Snails
  • Stock Cubes (I used 2 Maggi Chicken cubes)
  • Ogbono Powder (3/4 cup)
  • Crayfish (3 tsp)
  • Red onion (half, chopped)
  • Bitterleaf/Water leaves/Pumpkin Leaves/Spinach [All thoroughly washed and chopped] (100g)
  • Periwinkles (optional)
  • Salt to taste

Note: when using bitter leaves, endeavor to properly wash and squeeze to remove the bitter taste. You can put it in boiling water for 3 minutes, and then wash out in cool water. You don’t want your soup to be a struggle to eat.

Procedure:

Heat the palm oil in your saucepan, and add the onions, stirring until they get soft.

Add your ground pepper and let fry till it mixes with the oil, then put in your fish/snails/parboiled meat, stock cubes, and stir till all ingredients are well combined. Add about 3 cups of water and cover to boil.

When it’s fully boiling, pour in the Ogbono powder slowly in a circular motion so it doesn’t form a clump on one spot, then stir properly and leave to boil. Don’t cover the pot after the Ogbono has been put in, as it reduces its stretchy ability. Once the soup starts to thicken, you can add your crayfish powder, periwinkles, salt and leaves. Leave for about a minute, then turn of the heat.

Serves 5 – 6.

Enjoy with semovita or any “swallow” of your choice!

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Naija Couscous & Beans with Shrimp Sauce

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It has been ages since I made couscous, and I hadn’t properly integrated some form of Naijatitude into any CC dish before this. So after a very long day, and a lot of struggle with laziness, I got to work.

This dish has a lot of essential nutrients. Protein in the beans, carbohydrate in the couscous, vegetables packed full of vitamins – especially as they’re not overcooked, the generous amount of copper in the shrimp! However, it’s good to also note that if you’re trying to reduce your daily cholesterol intake, shrimp should probably not be on any of your daily menus too.

Here is the recipe for the dish:

INGREDIENTS

(For the Couscous)

I cup couscous

1/2 cup black eyed beans

1 tsp curry powder

1/2 tsp black pepper

chicken stock

3 tbsp vegetable oil

METHOD:

Boil beans till soft. Then heat some vegetable oil in a pan, put the beans, curry and black pepper, stir till properly mixed (you can add a little salt).

Pour Couscous into a pan of boiling water -I used boiling chicken stock for better flavor- and leave it till the water is absorbed and Couscous is soft & fluffy. Don’t boil Couscous!

Mix together the beans and Couscous completely.

(For the shrimp sauce)

1 pack deveined shrimps

1 yellow bell pepper, cut into big cubes

1 green bell pepper, cut into big cubes

3 hard tomatoes, cut into big cubes

1 bottle chili sauce

1/4 Clove garlic

1 small red onion, diced

5 tbsp olive oil

1 Maggi chicken seasoning

salt and pepper to taste

METHOD

Heat the oil in a pan and stir in the garlic, onions & shrimps for about a minute. Add the chili sauce and stir till it’s starts to slowly bubble. Add the seasoning and leave covered for about 4 minutes. Stir in the vegetables, and salt/pepper to taste, then reduce heat and leave covered for a few seconds. Turn of heat and serve.

Bon apetit! Stay tuned for more.