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Wednesday, July 17, 2024

Savour Oha soup as main dish, cassava-coconut salad as dessert

A refreshing twist on a popular Nigerian street food, this salad combines shredded cassava, fresh coconut, herbs, chilies, seeds, and nuts for a burst of flavors and textures.
Prep time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Servings: 4 People

• Salt, to taste
• Handful of herbs (scent leaves, cilantro, mint), chopped
• Two cups fresh and grated coconut
• Four cups tapioca or shredded cassava
• Two to three spring onions, chopped (green and white parts)
• One to two red and green chilies, sliced or chopped
• Zest and juice of one to two limes
• Two to three tablespoons toasted sesame seeds

• In a large bowl, combine the shredded cassava, grated coconut, chopped spring onions, sliced or chopped chilies, chopped herbs, lime zest and juice, toasted sesame seeds, and salt. Reserve the peanuts and mackerel for topping.
• Toss all the ingredients together until well combined, ensuring that the flavors are evenly distributed throughout the salad.
• Taste the salad and adjust the seasoning as needed, adding more salt or lime juice to suit your preferences.
• Transfer the salad to serving plates or bowls and top each portion with a generous amount of toasted, crushed peanuts and flaked, smoked mackerel, or any other desired toppings.
• Serve the cassava and coconut salad immediately and enjoy the refreshing and vibrant flavors. This salad is delightful at room temperature but can also be enjoyed chilled if preferred.

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Oha soup

Oha soup
A rich and hearty Nigerian soup featuring tender Vchunks, Oha leaves, cocoyam, and aromatic spices. Serve hot with fufu or pounded yam for a satisfying meal.
Preparation time: 30 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes
Total time: 1 hour.

• 300 g Vchunks
• Two cups Oha leaves
• Five small cocoyam
• One onion, finely chopped
• One-quarter cup palm oil
• Two teaspoons ground mushroom
• One teaspoon ground pepper (adjust to taste)
• Half a teaspoon ogiri Igbo
• Salt (adjust to taste)
• Water or stock

• Begin by washing the Oha leaves thoroughly and cutting them into desired pieces. Set the leaves aside for later use.
• Next, wash the cocoyam and place them in a pot of water. Boil the cocoyam until they become soft and tender. Once cooked, remove the cocoyam from the water, peel off the skin, and either blend or pound them into a smooth paste.
• In a separate pot, cook the Vchunks along with chopped onions and enough water or stock to cover them. Allow the Vchunks to simmer until they become tender and fully cooked.
• Heat the palm oil in another pot over medium heat until it becomes clear. Be careful not to let the oil smoke or burn.
• Add the ground mushroom and pepper to the heated palm oil and stir well to combine.
• Pour the cooked Vchunks and their cooking liquid into the pot containing the palm oil mixture. Stir to incorporate all the ingredients.
• Add the ogiri to the pot and stir well. Allow the soup to simmer for approximately ten to fifteen minutes. After simmering, add the cocoyam paste to the soup to thicken it to your desired consistency.
• Gently stir in the chopped Oha leaves (or spinach) and let the soup simmer for an additional five to seven minutes. This will allow the leaves to wilt and become tender.
• Taste the soup and season with salt as needed. If desired, adjust the level of spiciness by adding more ground pepper.
• Once the soup has reached your preferred taste and consistency, remove it from the heat. Serve the hot Oha soup alongside your choice of fufu or pounded yam for a delightful and satisfying meal.

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