Travel Noire Eats And Recipes: Nigerian Ẹ̀fọ́ Riro
By Travel Noire
Nothing unites people quite like food. To celebrate the black men and women who are using food to connect cultures and communities, we’re sharing some of our favorite recipes from chefs, at-home cooks, and food lovers who know that great flavors can bring us all together. Akudo Agokei (@rad_economist) is a self-taught chef from Nigeria who now resides in the UK, and here he shares another one of his recipes, this time for a Nigerian vegetable soup called Ẹ̀fọ́ riro.
WHAT YOU’LL NEED
1 can chopped tomatoes
2 tbsp. Iru (fermented locust beans)
2 red bell peppers
1 red onion
½ chopped and diced white onion
4 garlic cloves
1/4 smoked catfish fillets
1/4 stock fish
1-2 tbsp. sea salt (added gradually)
1 scotch bonnet
1 tbsp. curry
ogiri (fermented oil seeds)
1 tsp. white pepper (optional)
1 tsp. dried thyme
1 ½ palm oil
Ugu (pumpkin leaves) / substitute: spinach or kale
2 ½ tbsp. dried crayfish
1). PROCESS! In a food processor, process your canned tomatoes, red onion, scotch bonnet, ginger, garlic cloves, and bell peppers. A food processor blends it roughly than a blended does and this allows it to cook better and have a richer taste.
2). Soak your smoked catfish fillets and stock fish in hot water, in a bowl and cover with a lid for 10 minutes.
3). Put your Palm oil in a pot, and start to cook on high heat, just when you see it start to smoke, turn down the heat, and throw in your diced onion and iru and fry for 5 minutes.
4). Now add in your tomato mix from the food processor, and your crayfish, ogiri, get the smoked catfish and stock fish from the bowl, drain the water, we don’t want that, then put the fishes in.
5). Add the rest of your seasonings, and salt, and cook for about 15 on medium heat, then taste, if the taste is good for you, then chop Ugu or spinach and add in, and reduce the heat and simmer for 5 more minutes.
6). If you require more taste, use either salt or crayfish to amplify the taste.
7). You can add cooked/fried meat or fish if you like into the soup. Avoid using all the seasonings if you are doing so, the cooked/fried meat or fish will bring seasonings and flavors of their own and you do not want an over seasoned soup, so taste first before continuing.
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