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Friday, December 8, 2023

Pounded yam and egusi soup, the irresistible combo!

Egusi soup, a staple in Nigerian cuisine, is a rich and flavorful dish beloved across West Africa. Made with ground melon seeds, this soup is known for its unique texture and taste. It’s often enriched with leafy vegetables, seasoned meat, and traditional spices, creating a hearty and nourishing meal that’s both a comfort food and a celebration of cultural culinary traditions.

A simmering pot of egusi soup

Prep Time: 10 mins.
Cook Time: 50 mins.
Total Time: 1 hour
Servings: 8 individuals

• Two cups of melon (egusi)
• One cup of palm oil
• Three cups of beef stock
• Salt to taste
• 1 lb. Dried fish or cow leg
• Two medium onions
• One habanero pepper
• One fresno pepper
• One red bell pepper
• 24 oz. of chpped spinach (ugwu leaf)
• Four tablespoons of crayfish
• Three tablespoons of locust beans

1. Blend the Peppers and Onions: Puree peppers and one onion together until smooth. Keep it aside.
2. Prepare Egusi Mixture: In a blender, combine Egusi melon seeds, half of the remaining onion, and crayfish. Blend into a mixture and set it aside.
3. Cook Onions in Palm Oil: In a pan, warm the palm oil over medium heat. Add diced half onion and some locust beans. Cook for about 3 minutes.
4. Cook Pepper Blend: Pour in the pepper blend. Let it simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking.
5. Add Stock and Seasonings: Mix in the rest of the locust beans, beef stock, and salt to your taste. Cover and cook for 5 minutes.
6. Cook Egusi: Carefully add the Egusi mixture to the pan. Don’t stir yet. Cover and let it cook for 20-30 minutes until it forms a soft mass. Then, gently mix it and add more stock or water if needed.
7. Add Fish and Meat: Put in the fish and meat, and cook for another 5 minutes.
8. Add Spinach: Finally, stir in the spinach, and simmer for 5 minutes, stirring continuously. Adjust the seasoning if needed.
9. Serve Hot: Enjoy your Egusi soup while it’s warm.

Pounded yam
Pounded Yam is a classic West African dish, renowned for its smooth, stretchy texture and ability to perfectly complement stews and soups. This staple, made from yams pounded into a doughy consistency, is a cherished part of traditional African meals, celebrated for its simplicity and heartiness.
Prep Time: 15 mins.
Cook Time: 15 mins.
Total Time: 30 mins.
Servings: 5 individuals
• Three lb. yam
• Water

1. Prepare the Yams: Remove the skins from the yams and cut them into half-inch thick slices.
2. Cook the Yams: Place the sliced yams in a pot and fill with water just enough to cover them. Cook the yams covered for about 30 minutes. Check every 10 minutes to see if they are tender enough to be pierced with a fork.
3. Pound the Yams: Once the yams are cooked and tender, transfer them into a food processor. Blend them until they achieve a smooth, dough-like consistency.
4. Serve: Enjoy the pounded yam with your choice of soup or stew.

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