All posts filed under: Food

Food Hacks: For the Love of Moin-Moin

I wish I could say I was adapting to motherhood. But it’s not exactly true, is it? Motherhood doesn’t give room for “adaptation”. It seizes its share of your life, your time, your space.  And I could go on and on about how it’s a good kind of “baby takeover” or conversely, how important I think it is to maintain one’s autonomy in the face of a baby’s subtle manipulation (lol!) but this is not that kind of post.  No, it’s not. I want to talk about food instead. Specifically, I want to talk about moi-moi.    If Nigerians were into superfoods and all what not, moi-moi would be a superfood. It ticks all the right boxes. High-protein (especially when filled with fish), check. Bulky enough to be filling, check. Nutty umami-ness, check. I love moi-moi. I’m not so crazy about all the work required to make it. These days, though, I’m making it once a week. Thanks to two hacks I discovered about roughly the same time. The first is bean flour. No, not the …

Friday is for Food: Easiest Lemon Pound Cake Ever

So what are you doing this weekend? How about “bake a cake”? The first cake I ever baked was a coconut pound cake. It remains an all-time favorite in my family. This lemon pound cake comes a close second. It hits all the right notes. Citrusy, check. Melt in your mouth, check. Visually appealing, check. Amateur-proof, check.  That said, I made it a few weeks ago (adapted from a recipe on Martha Stewart) and this time I took pictures so I could share with you. I hope you try it. I’d really like to know how it turns out.      

Nine Health Benefits of Jollof Rice

Jollof Rice courtesy KitchenButterfly.com When you Google “Health Benefits of Jollof Rice” (because you’re feeling guilty about the copious amounts of Jollof Rice you’re consuming), you get recipes. Recipes, I tell you. No one has bothered to write down the health benefits of Jollof Rice so I decided to do myself (and you) a favour by documenting them. This list is in no way, exhaustive. Feel free to add your own health benefits. Jollof Rice makes you happy. A study carried out in my house showed that family members are generally happier when lunch (or dinner) is shown to be Jollof Rice. It may be related to the release of oxytocin in the brain as our eyes register the pleasure that is a steaming heap of sinfully orange rice. And fried plantain. Jollof Rice contains tomatoes, peppers and onions. Tomatoes are good for you. They help prevent cancer. Peppers are good for you. They contain lots of vitamins. Onions are good for you. They reduce inflammation and heal infections. Jollof Rice contains rice. Rice is a well-known …

Dissecting the Easiest, Tastiest Ofe Nsala Recipe Ever

I’ll talk about ogiri, the curious flavouring that gives this soup its characteristic pungency and umami-ness. It’s made from fermented cottonseed (thanks for that, Ozoz) and it does for Igbo soups what Iru (fermented locust beans) does for Yoruba soups and what I imagine certain cheeses do for Western cuisine.

Christmas Is For Food… And A Note on Nigeria's Google Trends.

Someone asked me what my holiday plans are. I don’t have a lot. My ideal Christmas would have a fierce harmattan, and find me curled up in an armchair with hot Bournvita and a good book. The problem with harmattan is the drying out of my hair. Yeah, I’m wearing my hair out. All the salon women keep inviting me to come and do “Christmas hair” but I’ve outgrown such societal pressures, thank God. My earliest memories of Christmas are of feasts. Food, food, food. Peppery jollof rice, cold Coca Cola, peppered chicken, chin-chin, buns, cake. To honour that tradition (and my obsession with good food), this Christmas, I plan to cook. I think there’s something spiritual about cooking for the people you love. There’s a connection it forges, from your hands to their stomachs. And watching their eyes light up with appreciation, is priceless. Instead of giving out hampers, I plan to give out boxes of cookies, cakes and muffins I bake myself. Mostly I’m giving to friends of my family who have been more …

How To Make The Perfect Jollof Rice

O.,   How do I make the perfect Jollof Rice?   R.     Dear R.,   Are you expecting a recipe? I have none. I do have a few tips I don’t mind sharing.   Cook for at least 4 people. Invite your friends/family. Or invite the strangers that you met at the bus-stop the last time it rained so heavy, you got to work at noon. Do you remember? You exchanged numbers with the guy and his sister and eventually hitched a ride with them when her fiance came to pick them. You’ve never gotten around to calling her. You should.   Blend a lot of onions into the tomatoes, don’t use tinned tomato puree. Add a quarter of a ginger root. Monitor the water, add it a little at a time.   Pretend you’re on a cooking show. Maybe Maggi Kitchen ( is that show still on air?) or Shokoyokoto. Say each step to yourself out loud. “Now, I’m adding a dash of Cameroon pepper.” It’s a lot of fun and no, …