Shout out to everyone from Kwara State -my state by marriage-. I fell deeper in love with Ekuru after marrying a Kwara man.
Ekuru is a meal made by steaming blended beans. Ekuru is usually enjoyed with fried pepper sauce and Eko, some people even eat it with plain, Okra Soup.
Ekuru can be simply described as moinmoin deconstructed i.e Moinmoin without oil, pepper, salt …
• Beans (black eyed peas)
• Dried Pepper (jalapeño, bawa/sombo)
• Palm oil
– Peel beans and blend to a not-so – smooth, not – so – coarse paste.
– Pour beans into a bowl and mix till very fluffy, if you have a mixer, you may want to use it cause mixing by hand would take at least 30mins. My mother – in – law uses a mortar to mix her beans paste.
Mix till the blended beans doubles in size or it is very fluffy. It would look like this
– This is the water test. Drop a bit of the paste in a some water, you are good to go if it floats like this.
– When you scoop it holds and doesn’t pour out easily. This is very similar to when you have whisked egg whites to stiff peaks.
– Wrap in leaves (that is my personal preference). You can however use small transparent cellophane bags, milk tins or foil.
– Steam cook for about 20mins on high heat.
Ekuru is light and airy, you would know it is done if you unwrap one and it is set and there is no paste on the inside or you insert a fork and it comes out clean
You can steam cook using a steam pot. Traditionally, the stalk of the leaf is cut and use to line the base of the pot before water is poured in and the wrapped leaves placed on it. This creates a barrier between the water and the leaves and allows only the steam to cook the food. If you are using cellophane bags (knot it after pouring your paste in) or tin foil packs, add water into pot and place the bag or packs in the water. Be careful not to use too much water so it is not submerged.
For Pepper Sauce
– Coarsely blend pepper and onions
This is my pepper of choice, it gives the sauce the unique flavour of Ekuru sauce. What I do is that I pre-soak for at least one hour before blending.
– Ponmo and fish is very optional. If using ponmo slice very thinly and shred fish.
– Heat palm oil in a pan and just before it gets to smoke point pour in your pepper and onion blend ,
– Add ponmo and fish after the pepper has spent 10 mins on the fire, allow to simmer for about 10mins.
– Turn off fire once the sauce starts to sizzle.
After all the fancy plating. This is how Ekuru is eaten. Sauce is poured on Ekuru and it is mashed together eaten by hand or with cutlery.