Saturday, 23 February 2013


This is unbelievable even to me, this is my 3rd beans post. Maybe i'm not so much of a hater after all, also i discovered a way to cook beans to reduce the bloating and discomfort... Yeah, i think this is why i'm eating a lot more beans and it's simple really...soak it before you cook it for about 5 hours, overnight even. You guys knew this??? Well i didn't and wish someone had told me earlier, a couple hours (minutes really) of researching and i discover that when soaked, breakdown of of the membrane of certain sugars occur and when you rinse, these sugars get washed away. Skip this step and these sugars that don't readily get digested in the stomach, travel to you intestines where bacteria breaks them down causing intestinal gas. All i had to do to enjoy beans was soak it... ah well...

I had my first ewa agoyin experience when i still lived in Lagos, i had gone to visit a friend in Surulere when suddenly she hears some kind of chant and springs up and calls for her security man to call the women passing by. Now Franca is kinda posh so when i followed her outside with 2 plates, the scene that met my eyes dazzles me quite a bit. We were going to buy food from a street vendor, and not just regular food, BEANS!!! Long story short, we buy and go back inside and i spend quite a while staring at my plate then she says to try it with bread so i "don't see what it is that i'm eating" and i did, and did some more, then ate the rest without the bread...

I no longer live in Lagos, i had it just that one time but i never forgot it. so i googled it and found a couple recipes and tried to play back what it tasted like and came up with this...

2 Cups of Brown Beans (Cleaned, rinsed and soaked in water for 5 hours minimum)
3 Tomatoes
4 Red Bell Peppers (Tatashe)
2 Small Onions
1 Teaspoon Grated Ginger
250Grm Offals
1/4 Cup Ground Crayfish
1 Cup Palm Oil
1 Seasoning Cube
Salt & Pepper

Cover your beans with enough water and pressure cook for 90 minutes, or regular cook for 2 hours, topping up water when needed.

While your beans cooks, roughly blend tomato, bell pepper and one onion. Transfer into a pot, add meat, ginger, salt, pepper and 1 seasoning cube and set on low heat and allow to cook until all the water has dried up. The ewa agoyin i ate had no meat in eat but i have to have some meat and because i don't wanna lose any flavour by cooking the meat separately and not being able to use the stock, i chose to cook it in the tomatoes and let everyone party together and flavour one another.

When you have soft cooked beans with some water still in the pot, turn the heat down low and take a hand held blender (if you have one) or a pestle and go to town mashing/pureeing the beans but not till its totally smooth.

Leave it on the low heat to tighten up, stirring occasionally so that it doesn't burn and stick to the pot. As soon as it has a porridge consistency, turn it off. It will tighten further as it cools so you don't want it very thick before you take it off the heat.

Chop 2nd onion.

Fish meat (lol) out of tomato/pepper paste.

Pour palm oil into dry pot and allow to bleach for about 7 minutes. Add chopped onions and allow to cook down and caramelize and brown, not burn and blacken.

Add meat and fry for 2 - 3 minutes.

Pour in crayfish and lastly tomatoes.

Fry until the tomatoes appear dry and form separate pieces in the pot. Taste for seasoning.

Spoon over a bowl of mashed cooked beans.


Friday, 15 February 2013


It's the day after Valentine's Day, and while a good number of you were being wined and dined in fancy restaurants, somewhere in Onitsha, one of my Igbo bros was enjoying his own date and a beer parlour with Nkwobi and Big Stout. All na love...

Nkwobi isn't something you absoultely have to get from a restaurant or "joint" because its a simple recipe...just find the spices and you are well on your way.

1 KG Cowleg
2 Cups Oil Bean Seed aka Ugba
1/4 Cup Palm Oil
Akanwuu (Pottash)
1 Teaspoon Ground Efura/Ehuru
1 Tablespoon Ground Crayfish
Utazi Leaf (optional)
Salt & Pepper

Chop cowleg into little pieces, season your cow-leg and cook until tender.

Take cow leg out of any left over stock and set aside. It should cool down a bit before being added to the sauce or it will spoil the consistency.

Put a little akanwu into a bowl and pour in some stock (if you have any left over) or add a little water, about 1/4 cup. Allow to stand as it dissolves some of the akanwu.

Get out your trusty little mortar or a bowl or pot and get your sauce started. Add efura/ehuru (if you have the whole efura seed, roast it a bit on an open flame, peel off the outer burnt shell and blend in a spice blender or pound in a mortar), ground crayfish, salt and pepper and mix up with a spoon. Add palm oil and then pour in the water/stock from the akanwu. Immediately the sauce will go from palm oil red/orange to a more pumpkin-like shade of orange and thicken up.

Add ugba to the paste and mix properly...

Toss in the cooked cow leg, mix properly and taste for seasoning.

If you want it hot you can put it back on the heat for 2 - 3 minutes. Take off and garnish with utazi and onion slices.

Serve with an ice cold Odeku!

Monday, 11 February 2013


Let me start out by saying brown rice isn't as nasty as people make it out to be, it isn't nasty at all. It just has an earthier flavour as it is whole grain and it works with whatever recipe. This is a super simple recipe and i loved it!

Green Pepper
Red and Green Chili Peppers
1 Tomato
1/2 a Medium Cucumber
1/2 Small Red Onion
1 Teaspoon Chopped Parsley
2 Tablespoons Lime Juice

Chop and combine all the ingredients together with lime juice in a bowl, season with a pinch of salt and black pepper. Cover and place in fridge.

Teriyaki Chicken
You can buy your teriyaki sauce or you can make yours. I made mine... Way cheaper...fewer artificial preservatives and stuff i can't pronounce.

4 Drumsticks
3 Tablespoons Dark Soy Sauce
1 Teaspoon Sugar
1 Teaspoon Red Chili Flakes
2 Tablespoons Rice Wine
1 Teaspoon Vinegar
1 Teaspoon Olive Oil (the original recipe calls for Sesame Oil but i prefer the flavour of Olive Oil)
1 Teaspoon Grated Garlic
1/2 Teaspoon Grated Ginger

Place chicken on a board and with a sharp knife make slits on your drumsticks.

Transfer chicken to a freezer bag and pour in all the teriyaki marinade ingredients. Mix properly, seal and pop into the fridge for 1 - 6 hours.

Pre-heat oven.

Lightly grease an oven tray and place your chicken. Pop in the oven and allow to grill for 20 minutes. !0 minutes on each side.

If you must baste the chicken with the remaining marinade, please make sure you boil the marinade for at least 2 minutes first, or use at the beginning stage of the cooking in order to kill off bacteria. Ingesting uncooked/not properly cooked marinade is just as dangerous as ingesting the raw chicken or any other raw meat for that matter.

Rice Salad
1 Cup Brown Basmati Rice
Carrots (Sliced)
Green, Red and Yellow Bell Peppers (Sliced)
1 Cup Fresh Spinach (Sliced)
1 Spring Onion Stalk
3 Tablespoons Olive Oil
2 Tablespoons Red Wine Vinegar
2 Tablespoons Chopped Parsley
1 Tablespoon Fresh Thyme
1 Shallot

Add 1 tablespoon olive oil into a hot pan and pour your rice and a little chopped onions (optional, i like onions a bit too much), mix properly until the rice is completely coated. Leave for about 30 seconds, add some salt and then a cup of water.

Allow rice to cook uncovered, adding a little water at a time as needed till your rice is cooked al dente (cooked but with a bit of a bite).

Take off the heat and allow to cool.

While it cools, blend shallot, parsley, thyme and red wine vinegar to make a dressing, adding the olive oil a little at a time until you have a smooth paste. Season with salt and a pinch of black pepper.

When rice is cool, combine with sliced vegetables and dressing and serve up.