Obe Ori Okuta

When I was I the university,  a friend shared one of her fondest memories of her grand mother. It was her pepper stew, called Obe Ori Okuta, loosely translated as Stew made on Stone. Basically it was stew made with pepper ground with locust beans on a traditional grinding stone, fried in bleached palm oil with no bouillon cubes,  just salt. The stew is served with any meal that calls for stew.

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Recipe

Ingredients

•    Peppers (Jalapeño / Scotch Bonnet Ratio 5 : 3)

•    Tomato  (optional)

•    Whole locust beans

•    * Powdered Crayfish

•    Salt

•    Palm oil

Procedure

–   Blend  the pepper and locust beans to a smooth paste. I didn’t use no stone to grind it,  ain’t nobody got time for that.

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–    Bleach palm oil,

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–    Fry the blended pepper , season with salt and blended crayfish. Add pre cooked meat or fish and cook till well cooked.

This stew graced Ewedu that accompanied Amala tonight.

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Ponmo Alata

Spicy Ponmo.  Ponmo is a delicacy!  I don’t know what the government thought they were saying, sometime last year, they  want to  ban Ponmo! We should put this curly cow hide on a national emblem already. I know a lot of people agree that ponmo is the truth. It’s said that Ponmo has no nutritional value but that does not take away the fact that it melts in your mouth when it is well cooked or for the slightly tough ones it is crunchy. Some weeks back in the Lagos Island market, i observed people rushing to buy Peppered Ponmo,  they had been waiting for the hawker to come around and when she did they swarmed around her. My first introduction to Ponmo Alata was also in the same market years ago. I love to eat it as much as I love to cook it. Cooking it is very easy. image Recipe Ingredients •    500 g Ponmo •    1 1/2 cups coarsely blended pepper mix (tomatoes + pepper + onion) * pepper content should be a little high. I like mine really spicy so I do a ratio of 1 tomato to 5 peppers (2 scotch bonnet + 3 jalapeño ) and quarter of a medium sized onion. So people can’t handle that kind of heat. •    1/8 cup Vegetable oil •    1 small onion •    Bouillon Cubes •    Salt Procedure –    Wash the ponmo throughly, cleaning and peeling out any unnecessary stuff on it. image –    Season with salt and bouillon cubes,  add onion and boil the ponmo image –     When the ponmo is tender, take it off the heat  and set aside. Heat up some oil and add the pepper.  Add stock from cooking the ponmo. Add more seasoning if you want. image image image –    Cook with lid off till the water reduces completely and the pepper starts to fry. Stir the ponmo into the pepper sauce,  cook for an additional 3 minutes and turn off the heat. –    Allow the ponmo to stay in the pepper for at least 30 mins before serving image image

Gizdodo

image Gizdodo is a happy marriage of fried plantain, fried gizzard and peppered stew. I’ve been trying to find the history of the dish but one thing I’m certain of is that it was made popular by caterers who served them at parties and events. Usually it is served at parties as a side dish or it accompanies some other dishes, but it can be served just by it self. I love gizzard, cooked or fried, I just love the crunch, it’s like eating beef that taste like chicken with the crunch of a soft cartilage.

image Okay Enough of my rant, I craved gizdodo last night but Le hubs ordered beans, so I spent all of today dreaming of dinner.

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Recipe

•    1 Kg Frozen Gizzard

•    6 Ripe Plantains

•    2 Large Onions

•    4 Tomatoes

•    Jalapeño peppers ( Bawa / Sombo / long tatashe ) As many as you want depending on how much heat you can handle. I used more than 10 pieces

•    1 large sweet bell pepper  (i used 1/2 Yellow and 1/2 Orange sweet bell peppers)

•    Scotch Bonnet  (Ata rodo) as many as you want

•    1 cup gizzard Stock

•    4 Bouillon Cubes (knorr beef cubes in this instance)

•    Salt to taste

•    Vegetable oil ( to fry )

Procedure

–    Rinse gizzard, put in a pot and   chop one large onion, and season with bouillon cubes, and salt. Cook till it is well cooked.

image image –     While your gizzard is cooking prep you other ingredients. Coarsely blended your tomatoes, onion and peppers. You can use as little or as much of any of these ingredients. What we want to get is at least 2 1/2 cups of the coarsely blended pepper. Chop you bell peppers. When the gizzard is cooked, save the stock,  chop and fry. image image

–     Dice up your plantains and fry till golden brown and set aside. (I like to fry my plantain first and use the same oil to fry the gizzard)

image image –     Using some the oil you fried the gizzard in, in a pot or wok add the pepper blend, add 1 cup of the gizzard Stock,  taste for seasoning, if necessary season a little more. Cook with lid off till the water is reduced completely and the pepper starts to fry in the oil, turn the heat down a notch, then add chopped bell peppers.

–     Turn the heat down completely and  add the gizzard,  stir it in well and add the fried plantain and stir in using a wooden or plastic spoon/ladle  so as not to mash up the plantain.

–     Stir in well and turn off the heat. Serve warm.

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Le hubs came in 1 hr early from work and came straight to the kitchen, the aroma of the gizzard pulled him in, he says “Ki lon ta san san? ” (What smells goods), he spies the gizzard and the says “Ope o! Gizdodo ” He had second helpings. The little man in his own case was upset, because I had given him just dodo and fried egg earlier since he had  an early dinner. -Bedtime is 7 – 7.30 pm on a school night and school is back in session. –

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