Fried Okra and Bitter leaf Soup

IMG_2301 (2)It was a cool Saturday morning and I ask Ajebutter1 what she thought we should have for breakfast and she said “Eba’. I thought to myself “There is no soup” But I had some Okra and after rummaging through the refrigerator, I found it. I thought about what I could whip up and the perfect recipe came to mind. I learned this recipe from one of my brothers. He used to make Okra soup any time he visited from the university and he would for some reason fry it. Gosh, memories of my brother cooking crosses my mind and I remember how I had to clean up after him. The man could not clean up to save his soul lol! 🙂 He made a very good meal, but the kitchen was always left like a war torn zone whenever he was done and I being the youngest had to clean up after him…Sigh. As the youngest child, you were also given your food last but called to clean up first. Some of the Nigerian culture can be exhausting sometimes. I was also sent on almost every errand as the youngest child. It is quite true that there is the most pressure on the first and last children in every Nigerian family.

IMG_2328 (2) Anyway, I called my mother and I quickly went to work on this recipe. My Ajebutter1 was so excited and helped me write down the ingredients as we went on. My Ajebutters are both part of this food life and they love every minute spent together in the kitchen. They are my very own taste testers 🙂


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Fried Okra Soup
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 6
  • 2 cups of chopped Okra
  • 90mls of palm oil(any other oil works)
  • 1-2 habanero pepper or ata-rodo
  • 1 small onion(chopped)
  • Bouillon(optional)
  • 1tsp ogiri paste(optional)
  • 3tsps dry grinded pepper or red pepper flakes(divided)
  • 2tbsps dry grinded crayfish
  • salt to taste
  • 2 medium sized roasted Mackerel(any meat or fish works)
  • ½ lb mussels(optional)
  • 1½ cups washed bitter leaf, Ugu ie pumpkin leaves or spinach(chopped)
  • A handful of uziza or spicy curry leaves
  • 1 cup of water or meat stock
To roast Mackerel cut fish into medium sizes, season with salt, 1 tsp of dry pepper and roast in a 350degree oven until cooked and golden brown
Method for soup
  1. Heat the palm oil in a pot, add the chopped onions and sauté until translucent. Pour in the crayfish and break in the Onga cube or add salt instead. Fry for about a minute(Do not burn)
  2. Pour in the Okra and fry really well until you see it is about to break down and loose it's viscosity; add whatever vegetables you are using, add some water or meat stock in little increments until your desired consistency and add the ogori if using . Stir in the mussels and remaining 2 tbsps. of dry pepper; then check for seasonings. Cover the pot(Yes this recipe is a little different, we are not worried about the soup's viscosity). After about 10minutes add the fish, check for seasonings and set aside
When you cook with mussels, they will open their shells. If they do not open their shells; then pick them out of the food and toss. Always smell and wash your mussels before using. To wash, scrub with a strong cloth and remove grits. Do not try to manually open them when removing grits. Simply press down the shell and pull the grits out



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