Yesterday, I had planned to have Fried Plantain for dinner until I went looking for a picture on my phone and I stumbled on a picture of Ila Asepo. Needless to say all my plans for dinner flew out of the window,-for me at least-, husband dearest does not eat Ila Asepo and he has no idea what he is missing.
1 bowl Okra (2 litre bowl in this case)
Assorted Meats (Goat meat and tripe in this case)
Assorted Fish (Stock fish and smoked catfish in this case)
Soft curly Ponmo
1/8 cup Ugba
Uziza leaves (a handful of chopped leaves)
1/8 cup Palm oil
2 heaped tbsp Iru (locust beans)
2 tbsp Dried pepper
2 Fresh chilli pepper chopped
Slice your Okra as you desire and set aside
Season with salt, cayenne pepper , onions, bouillon cubes, about 2 cups of water and boil your assorted meats till tender. If you have smoked catfish, for added flavour boil the heads with it.
About 10 – 15 minutes into boiling the meat, add the snails and ponmo. Cook for another 15 minutes or more depending on how tender you like your meats.
Once the meat is done take out the fish heads and discard. Now add your palm oil, assorted fish, iru, ugba, smoked prawns and leave to cook for 5 – 10 minutes.
Taste your broth to determine if you need more seasoning which I doubt, if it is lacking something slightly season.
Now its time to add your chopped pepper, uziza leaves, fresh prawns and sliced Okra . Now turn the heat down to medium and cook with lid off for about 5 minutes. After 5 mins take off the heat
Now this kinds of soup doesn’t need an accompaniment but if you must, pair with a light staple e.g Tuwo,Semolina, Amala etc
*Don’t overcook the Okra. Okra is packed with nutrients that can easily be destroyed by heat.
*If cooking with onions, it should be cooked with the meats. The acidity in onions and *tomatoes, interfere with the okra and would likely prevent it from being slimy.
My friend Seun thinks only Ondo people cook the correct Ila Asepo! Babe until you teach me your grandma’s recipe. This Ila Asepo is the truth.
Pictures of Seafood Ila Asepo