If there is one food I revere, it is the Nigerian salad. It is one dish that can serve as a full meal or a side dish. It can also be made in a whole lot of different ways with different types of vegetables. For more than a year, I have been aiming to making this salad, but the opportunity never came until we went to Massachusetts this past summer and I had to make it per request for a Summer birth day party. Even at that, I almost did not share this recipe. I didn’t think the picture was pretty enough, but listen, it’s the recipe that counts 🙂
Making “the Nigerian salad” takes patience. Making any type of good salad/food takes patience. Once thing that grinds my gears is eating chunks of vegetables in the name of eating a salad. In fact it turns me off. You don’t have to serve your guests or yourself, chunks of vegetables which look as big as yam or cassava tubers all with the aim of trying to eat a salad.
Growing up Nigerian and helping my mom with kitchen chores, she taught us how to cut our vegetables for salad either into tiny and long strips or into very small pieces. The work involved seems a bit tiring, but I tell you, the yumminess at the end is totally worth it. We made salad every holiday and I was never fond of salad duty. I liked meat duty; plenty of meat tasting for me.
The Nigerian salad is a staple; just like rice in Nigerian parties and most Nigerian homes. And to enjoy it’s health benefits, please do not drench it in salad dressing or Mayonnaise. Some people bath their salad in Heinz salad dressing. Well, delicious as it may seem, it defeats the purpose of your fit fam; if that’s your reason for making your bowl of salad. If not, carry go, drench away….kuku pour the salad dressing join body.
The Nigerian salad is like an Ankara fabric that can be sewn into different styles which can be easily over done; like some people with their bogus haute couture 🙂 The same way the Nigerian salad can be made in different ways but become too much. Some people like to add corned beef or baked beans to their bowl. I’m not a fan of baked beans in my salad and I can do the occasional boiled potatoes or pasta. But for today’s recipe, I’ll be sharing a very easy version that I have come to like. This version to me is just clean and easy to make in a jiffy. With the Nigerian salad, less is more. No need to bother with any cans, cooking anything, draining anything or peeling anything.
- 1 small to medium sized cabbage(cut into very small pieces)
- 2 medium sized cucumbers (wash and dice into small cubes)
- 1 head curly leaf lettuce (wash and cut into small pieces....use half)
- 2 tomatoes(remove seeds and dice into small cubes)
- carrots (wash and cut into small pieces)
- corn (whole kernel corn. About 2-3 corn on the cob or 1 medium sized can. If using the can, rinse the kernels and drain before using. You may use boiled or roasted corn on the cob. Simply shave the corn from the cob using a knife)
- Green beans (rinse the beans, cut off the ends and cut into small pieces like the video attached to the post)
- White vinegar 1-1½ tsp(optional)
- 6-8 boiled eggs (make yours prettier than mine)
- Wash the ingredients with water, prepare then add a little white vinegar(1 to 1½ tsps should be enough to distribute amongst the ingredients. Just sprinkle and shake each ingredient and layer up in a bowl. Enjoy with mayonnaise or Heinz salad dressing for full effect. You could use any salad dressing you prefer.