Efo elegusi simply means Egusi made with a higher quantity of green vegetables like spinach, ugu, kale etc. The blog is well populated with Egusi soups of different styles but today's version is one of the ways the Yoruba tribe of Western Nigeria cook their Egusi soup.
Egusi soup made in Eastern Nigeria is always made with Vegetable so mentioning the vegetable in the soup is not necessary for the Igbos of Eastern Nigeria because it's a giving.
The stress on the vegetable in this Efo elegusi by the originators of the dish I think may be due to the fact that there is another delicious version of Egusi soup from that region that is cooked without green vegetables and is called Egusi ijebu. Hopefully I should be making that soon. So if you are interested in getting notified as soon as it is published, remember to sign up here so you don't miss it or any of the amazing recipes shared on the blog.
How does Efo elegusi really differ from the other Egusi soups already on the blog ?
- Efo elegusi is the made using the frying method ( the Egusi is fried)
- Iru is used in Efo elegusi.
- Like I mentioned st the beginning of this post, Efo Elegusi translated literally means a vegetable soup made with some egusi. In other words this is more of a vegetable soup
How to make Efo Elegusi?
One of my big aunties from the Yoruba tribe taught me. According to Aunty Sola, there is a technique to frying the Egusi; when you introduce the Egusi into the oil allow it stick a bit to the bottom of the pot before stirring. It helps to make the soup lumpy.
Aunt Sola blends her peppers separate from the Egusi but I usually blend mine together with the ground Egusi. That way I skip the process of 'pepper mix' reduction and also helps cook the Egusi linger. Both ways taste amazing so Whichever way you choose to make it, be rest assured it would be delicious and definitely drool worthy. But today I would stick to the traditional style Aunty Sola thought me. Though I will share tips on how I make it most times in the recipe notes. That way you have access to both methods... not that they are very different anyway ? Which ever way you decide I know you will kill this recipe when you make it. All I ask is that you drop me a comment and share this post with your family and friends.
- 3 large red bell peppers deseeded
- 2 ata rodo (scotch bonnet peppers or habanero peppers ) add more if you want it more spicy
- 300 g of ground Egusi seeds about 2 cups
- 8 cups of meat stock make up with water if meat stock isn't enough
- 250 g kale chopped
- 2 large onions divided: chop one up and leave the other for blending
- ¼ cup iru
- 1.½ cup palm oil
- 6 Tbsp ground crayfish
- I kg assorted meats precooked and fried
- Blend the red bell pepper, habanero pepper and ½ of one onion with little water just enough to help the blender then set it aside
- Blend the ground Egusi, crayfish and other half of the onion into a thicker paste and set aside.
- Heat up palm oil, sauté chopped onions for about 1 minute the add the washed iru and stir for another 1 minute.
- Pour in the blended bell pepper/habanero/onion mix and stir
- Cook the pepper mix until reduced to a loose paste
- Add the Egusi paste in lumps (refer to process shots in blog post please.)
- Turn the heat to low and allow the Egusi lumps to stick to the bottom of the pot. Before stirring.
- When it begins to stick to the pot, stir and fry the Egusi for about 5 mins ( this time you need to stir more frequently to prevent burning.
- Add the meat stock. Taste for seasoning. Adjust accordingly. Allow to cook for for another 10 mins.
- Add the fried meats and stir.
- Add the chopped vegetable, turn off heat and slow residual heat cook the vegetable
- Serve with any swallow food of choice.