"Time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time." Marthe Troly-Curtin

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Nigerian Pepper Soup
Pepper Soup or Peppersoup—which is especially popular in the English-speaking countries of Western Africa: Ghana, Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Nigeria—doesn't have any more pepper than many other African soups. It is usually made with goat meat, but can also be made with beef, chicken, or mutton. There are many ways this soup can be seasoned. One Nigerian company makes "Peppersoup cubes" (for "easy, tasty, convenient peppersoup in double quick time"), which may be available in import grocery stores.

What you need
two pounds goat meat, lamb or mutton (beef for stew can also be used); cut into bite-sized pieces
one or two onions, quartered
two or three hot chile peppers, cleaned and chopped
peppersoup seasoning (see below)
four cups meat broth or stock
two tablespoons ground dried shrimp
one small bunch fresh mint leaves, chopped
one tablespoon fresh or dried utazi leaves (or bitterleaf) (see below)
salt and black pepper to taste
What you do
In a deep pot or dutch oven, combine meat, onions, chile peppers, and a cup of water. Bring to a boil and cook until meat is done, twenty to thirty minutes, adding water as necessary to keep pot from becoming dry.
Add peppersoup seasoning and the broth or stock (or water) and simmer over low heat for ten to twenty minutes.
Add the dried shrimp, mint leaves, and utazi leaves. Season with salt and pepper. Simmer until soup is to be served.
Packaged peppersoup seasoning mix, usually imported from Nigeria, may be found in African grocery stores. The traditional spices used in pepper soup are little known outside of Africa.
Jessica B. Harris and others report that expatriate Nigerians make a substitute peppersoup seasoning mix from allspice, anise pepper, anise seeds, cloves, coriander seeds, cumin seeds, dried ginger, fennel seeds, and tamarind pulp.
Some cooks also use thyme, Maggi® cubes, curry powder, cayenne pepper or red pepper, and tomato paste.
Utazi leaves and bitterleaf may also be found in African grocery stores. If they cannot be obtained, any bitter green can be substituted.

1 comment:

  1. Sounds delicious, can't wait to try! Following your blow :) ~Eric @ Happy Valley Chow