Nigerian Akara: West African Black Eyed Pea Fritters

Nigerian Akara: West African Black Eyed Pea Fritters - Akara fresh from fryer

The other day I shared my recipe for Moi moi, and if you recall, I said that Moi moi was one of my favorites, but that I had other dishes that were also on my favorite list. Akara is another favorite of mine and is quite easy to make. Nigerian Akara is similar to Moi moi, but unlike Moi moi that is steamed, Akara are fried black eyed pea fritters. The texture and taste of Akara and Moi moi are worlds apart, but they use very similar ingredients.

Moi Moi Recipe: Steamed Black Eyed Peas Pudding

Not too long ago, if you asked me what my favorite food was, I would have said Moi moi, hands down. Nowadays, I have a handful of favorite foods, but Moi moi remains close to the top of the list. Moi moi (also called moin moin) is a  delicious, savory steamed bean pudding made commonly in Nigeria from a mixture of blended black eyed peas or beans, peppers, onions, and spices.  This moi moi recipe uses smoked trout in the Moi moi, but you can switch it out for any other cooked fish, corned beef, boiled eggs, or omit the animal protein altogether and make it vegan.

Groundnut Soup (Spicy Nigerian Peanut Stew)

Groundnut Soup (Spicy Nigerian Peanut Stew) - Delicious groundnut stew dished with three wraps of eba

Groundnut soup is what peanut stew is commonly called in Nigeria. It is a nutty, savory, spicy and totally delicious peanut stew usually eaten with a starch like rice or eba. Peanut stews differ considerably by region, so I look forward to sharing with everyone my discoveries of its different variations. I tasted my first groundnut soup as a child in Lagos, Nigeria and… it was terrible! It was really bad guys, I can’t lie. After that first time, it was years till I found my love for groundnut soup or peanut stew again. Let me tell you the story…

Jollof Spaghetti: Easy, Classy and Delicious!

Jollof Spaghetti - bon appetit

Some people have asked me for my jollof rice recipe; to those I say, “hold please”. I, just like most other west Africans love jollof rice, but sometimes, I want a quick and easy jollof flavor that does not require me making jollof rice. In came my jollof couscous that takes only 20 minutes to prepare. I then became low-key addicted to quick and easy jollof recipes. I have also always loved pasta, so the no-brainer next step was to make a jollof spaghetti. My goal in making this recipe was to make sure it tasted like jollof, not spaghetti and sauce, and if I have to say so myself: I nailed it.

Thieboudienne: Senegalese Jollof Rice and Fish

Thieboudienne: Senegalese Jollof Rice and Fish

I am trying not to start my recipe posts with the usual “I love…”, so here goes  my attempt. Once upon a time, I was introduced to a Senegalese restaurant in downtown Baltimore by one of my dear Cameroonian friends. This trip created a soft spot in my food heart (aka my belly) for Senegalese cuisine. As a Nigerian myself, I thought that nothing could rival Nigerian food in this spot, but after I tasted the National dish of Senegal, Thieboudienne (also known as Ceebu Jen, riz au poisson, thiébou dieune, tíe biou dienne and thieb-ou-djien) , there was a mini war for my food heart. This Thieboudienne recipe is a mouth watering rice and fish dish that is like nothing I had before.

An Egusi Stew Alternative: Nigerian Almond Stew

Egusi Stew Alternative: Nigerian Almond Stew - Stew served with Eba

Afro- Foods, Savory | April 24, 2017 | By

I struggled for a little while coming up with the title of this recipe. As some of you may know, this picture looks like your typical egusi soup, but it is not. I, like many people I know live in “abroad”, which means I don’t always have easy access to African ingredients. Luckily for me, I do have an African store close by, so I don’t always struggle to find my home ingredients. Truth be told, African stores don’t come close to providing as much variety as is found back home, but… it meets the needs here just fine. One day however, I ran out of Egusi (melon seeds) to make Egusi stew or Egusi soup…

Alternative Chips & Fish Recipe: Tropical and Tasty!

Alternative Chips & Fish: Tropical and Tasty - fried perch with fried sweet potato cubes, fried taro root, and some plantain chips, ketchup and pepper mix on the side

While preparing this alternative chips & fish dish, I couldn’t help but think of my parents. Growing up, seafood was a big part of my life, not just because I ate it a lot, but because there are so many memories surrounding fish and chips and other seafood dishes that I would never forget in a hurry. My mother is originally from a coastal area of Nigeria, so seafood was always a tradition for her. I imagine that marrying my dad meant she got to share tons of interesting recipes with him because by the time I came around, my dad had already fallen in love with seafood himself.

Easy Nigerian Eggplant/Garden Egg Stew

Easy Nigerian Eggplant/Garden Egg Stew

I love when my mom or my mother-in-law (aka my other mom) come over to my home to spend sometime with me. I always learn a ton from them, especially in the kitchen and in the market place. On a recent visit from my mother-in-law, I re-discovered my love for eggplant / garden egg stew. My mom and I went to an Asian market that had tons of produce, we were picking out vegetables when we spotted some Thai-eggplants or as we call them at home, garden eggs. We decided to pick them up and make a simple yet delicious eggplant/garden egg stew.

Nigerian Spinach Stew: Yoruba Style

Spinach Stew: Yoruba Style - Dished and ready to eat with fish and a starch or rice

Afro- Foods, Savory, West African | January 23, 2017 | By

I’m sure most of us have already come up with (and hopefully not yet broken) some new year resolutions. If you’re like me, the majority of your new year resolutions tend to focus on a more healthy lifestyle. One specific resolution I made this year was to eat more vegetables in 2015, I even bought a squash the other day… (still not sure what I’ll be making with it, but more on that later). One of my favorite vegetables is spinach, and though that word sometimes triggers distasteful memories of its bland taste usually unmasked by boring recipes, or disguised in green smoothies, allow me to introduce you to a very common Nigerian recipe that will change the way you feel about this vegetable forever! This spinach stew locally known as “Efo Riro” is guaranteed to be one of the most savory and delicious spinach recipes you will ever taste.

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