In this post, Ghana meets Nigeria in the form of a soup. I would call this a more modern version of pepper soup. Each African country have their own version of the pepper soup or light soup recipe. Since I enjoy the Ghanaian and Nigerian version, I thought to myself why not fuse both and see the effects. I have to say I was quite pleased with this soup.
In Nigeria alone there are different types of pepper soups, each according to it’s culture. Although, I was born and raised in Warri, Delta State, I am Igbo and most Igbo versions make the use of Ehuru also known as Calabash or Jamaican nutmeg, Uda also known as the traditional cloves, Mkpurumosisi or what the Efiks call the Uyayak pod or Aidan fruit in English. And scent leaves or Basil.
I learnt how to make the Ghanian light soup from my friend Marama. It has served a lot of purpose for me especially during my diet spasms 🙂 I could go on an all pepper soup diet and it sure works when you use the right particulars ie the right protein like chicken or fish. I have seen different types of pepper soups in my life time and in Nigeria, they are sometimes used as appetizers during parties. there are different types of meat pepper soups; ranging from cow foot pepper soup to beef pepper soup. Although beef pepper soup is not common, some people do it as an option. My favorite fish for pepper soup would be the Catfish or Tilapia. Although, I did not like cat fish until I learnt how to properly clean it, It is all in the cleaning. You may eat this soup with yam, potatoes, plantain, rice balls or bread Some people eat their’s with fufu
I am really happy to share this recipe with you. It is easy, it tastes good, and you will keeping going back for more, so make sure to make it a large pot.
As we move ahead, I would share my recipes for the Nigerian pepper soup.
Here we go
- 1.6pounds catfish(cleaned and gutted)
- 1pound fresh prawns
- 1lb mussels and seafood mix
- 2 plum tomatoes
- 1 small red bell pepper
- 1 small green bell pepper(optional)
- 6 habanero peppers or ata-rodo(reduce or increase according to heat tolerance)
- 2 small carrots
- 1 knob of ginger ie about an inch
- 1 garlic clove(optional)
- A handful of chopped Basil leaves or scent leaves
- ½ teaspoon of dry grinded pepper
- 1 Maggi crayfish. Any bouillon works
- 1tablespoon of dry grinded crayfish
- Uyayak pod
- 1tbsp of utazi(optional)
- salt to taste
- 4 table spoons of pepper soup spice powder(add more if you wish
- 1tbsp of vegetable oil(optional)
- to wash the seafood and prawns, place them into a bowl with salt water, cover and vigorously shake. Repeat three times' then drain
- In a bowl with the Cat fish pour in some boiling water and let it sit for about 5 minutes. Drain and with a butter knife, scrape off the slime from each piece of fish. Season with salt, the dry grinded pepper, the Maggi crayfish, the pepper soup spices and the grinded crayfish. Toss with the fish and let it marinate. Sit the Uyayak pod with the marinating fish and wait until the tomato puree is ready.
- In a pot of water, boil all the vegetables until really soft. Drain and puree with a hand held blender or in a regular blender while slightly covered(This keeps the steam from being trapped in the blender). Pour the blended mix into the pot with the cat fish and add some water to your taste. Adjust all the seasonings including the pepper soup powder. I like mine really light so I added enough water to that effect. Cover the pot and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and cook for another 10minutes. Add the Mussels, prawns and sea food mix. Bring to another boil, reduce the heat and cook for another 5 minutes. The mussels will open up. Discard anyone that does not open up as it means it not good. Check for seasonings, pour in the basil, oil and the utazi and set aside. You may drink it like that or eat with some rice balls, yam, plantain, potatoes or bread