Saturday, 22 February 2014

Ayamase (ofada) Stew- The easy way

Hey guys happy weekend and hope everyone's having a fab sunny Saturday (a bit sunny & windy here in the UK)?
I remember when my Aunty used to make this stew, she'll heat the palm oil for days, and when I mean days, she'll literally heat the oil for a whole day and then continue the process for days until the oil is black in colour. I thought to myself is food this hard? It tasted good don't get me wrong but jeez 3 days cooking time all in the name of eating stew! Trust me that didn't motivate me into wanting to cook or learning new recipes. So I finally found an easy way of cooking the stew by narrowing it down to an hour cooking time (not bad ey lol), its not that hard after all. And I must say, I prefer my method 100%; and it tastes better than my aunty's did back then (sorry aunty lol). So here's to all you men & women out there who prefer easy and quick meals like me. Pictures below (now i'm not very good at food presentation but I can guarantee you that I'm currently working on it, any tips will be greatly appreciated)..O'toodles..xxxx

Cooking time:- 1 hour to 1 hour 15 mins



Ingredients (to feed 4)
Assorted meat/beef (this includes beef, cow foot, tripe, goat meat, kidney)
Palm oil (about 250ml:- if you're not great at measuring, half a cup would do)
locust beans (iru)
4 green bell pepper
yellow/green or red scotch bonnet
ground crayfish
salt to taste
stock cubes x 2
boiled eggs (optional)

Step by step Instructions
Place a pot on fire and add the palm oil, leave to heat up for at least 20-30mins, while this is heating up, cook your assorted meat until soft, now here's where its kinda tricky. You need the beef crunchy in your stew as that's the whole purpose of the stew. You don't want your beef extra soft and falling off into pieces in your stew so you've got to be very careful here. Whilst your beef is cooking, place your green bell pepper in the blender, add the onions, scotch bonnet and a little bit of water and blend roughly not smooth as this is the beauty of the Ofada stew. After blending, place in a pot and cook the blended papper until the water is dried out (this usually takes roughly about 20 to 30mins) & should be completely dry by the time your beef is finished cooking.
Once your beef is done to your standard, grill in the oven for a few minutes or fry if you prefer frying. You need it a bit crunchy so don't fry or oven grill it for too long; I did mine for 10mins in the oven using  moderately hot 375-400°♎ 190- 200°C. 
By the time the above process is done, you're looking at about 45mins from when you started, so you're not doing bad at all. Now add your blended pepper into the palm oil (be careful as the palm oil will be extremely hot now & avoid it splashing everywhere). Mix together, add your stock cubes, salt and ground crayfish, boiled eggs and leave to cook for about 7mins. (taste for salt/stock cubes as you go as a first timer) Boiled eggs is optional, but trust me there's no ofada stew without boiled eggs (ask our elderly lol) Now add your beef, stir and add the locust beans, (Note:- Wash the locust beans thoroughly as its mostly filled with dirt) leave to cook until you can see the oil residue at the top of the pot (10mins on medium heat). & Voila you're done. Serve with Rice & a nice glass of wine, juice or water lol. Well done you have successfully been given a pass mark..xx




























Monday, 10 February 2014

Homemade Yamarita with mixed pepper & king prawn sauce(Nigerian Ata din din)

I must say Yamarita sounds a bit posh lol; oh well I was at a friends house sometime ago and heard a few people talk about this so called Yamarita... I thought to myself hmm that sounds very posh, obviously I knew it was a Yam dish (Yamarita) and I'm sure you're wondering what the hell is Yamarita? Well it is a posh version of Fried Yam lol; don't know why the word "posh" is now my all time favorite lol (oh maybe I'm trying so hard to talk posh lol)

Anyway, back to the matter..... Yamarita is popularly eaten in Nigerian restaurants and its just basically Yam rolled in flour & eggs and fried (yes very fattening I know), but trust me it tastes beautifulllll and what make it even taste better is the sauce. Jeez if you know me very well, you'll know I'm a sucker for seafood especially King prawns, I put King prawns in virtually everything, yes that's how crazy and obsessive I am with it....Btw I'm not a Yam lover but trust me this Yamarita tastes fantastic. Pictures below, sorry guys I didn't take loads of pictures, apologies next time :-)

Ingredients:-

For the Yamarita
Puna Yam cut into slices. About 20 small rectangular sizes can feed 3
1 Egg- will be whisked
3 tablespoons of Flour- any type (self raising or plain)
Sugar to taste (as i'm a sweet tooth lol)
Salt to taste
Maggi cubes
Half a teaspoon of Cayenne Pepper
Olive oil/ sunflower oil (your preference)

The Mixed Pepper & King Prawn Sauce

1 whole Red, green, yellow bell Pepper (you can also make your life easier by getting the prepacked frozen peppers from any supermarket; saves you from chopping up peppers)- Life made easy lol
Scotch bonnet/habanero chilli pepper(for a taste of hotness)
1 clove of garlic
2 fresh tomatoes
red onion
Curry powder
half a teaspoon of thyme- I use fresh carribean thyme, it has a very lovely flavour to it

Step by step Instructions

Yamarita
Prepare your flour mix, by adding the flour in a flat plate, place the egg in a separate bowl and add some curry powder, sprnkle cayenne pepper & salt to taste in it .

Cut the Yam into small rectangular shapes, (Yam can be found in any afro-carribean shops or even any food chain supermarket). I prefer to use Puna Yam as it tastes better than normal yam. Add some salt and sugar to taste. Now some people usually don't put sugar in their Yam but like I said I've got sweet tooth so its up to you really.
Bring to boil with water for about 5-7mins, I'll say low heat and no more than 7mins as you don't want the Yam falling into pieces, you still want them to be in good hard form lol.

Place the perboiled yam in a plate and leave to cool for 5 minutes; place your saucepan on fire adding enough olive oil (about 500ml depending on the depth of your saucepan). Prepare the Arita for your Yam (lol) by dipping a piece of the Yam into the flour (you are basically rolling the yam into the flour), dip the flour coated yam into the egg mix (again rolling into the egg mix) and drop in your saucepan to fry. Repeat this process for all the Yam until you get a golden brown colour. Place a Kitchen towel in a flat plate to absorb the oil residue from the Yamarita and voila you are all done and ready to serve.


Mixed Pepper & King prawn sauce (Nigerian Ata din din)

Chop the red onions, mixed pepper, tomatoes, chilli and garlic. Heat the olive oil in a pan for 7minutes on low heat, make sure the heat is low otherwise once you add your chopped stuff, it splashes everywhere and kitchen accident is the last thing you need (ask me, I've experienced it so many times :-(

Add the thyme & curry powder in the hot oil, stir very well until dissolve. Now add the chopped onion, garlic, mixed pepper, tomatoes, chilli into the oil, mixed together and add some salt to taste, maggi cubes and leave to fry for 2minutes. After 2 minutes, add your king prawns. You can also use chicken or beef instead, depends on what you feel like so prawn is optional. Fry until sauce turns dark and thick. Voila your sauce is ready.

Thank me later :-)

Note:- King prawn is optional as I know there are some people allergic to fish so this is totally up to you.

Watch my Youtube video on Yamarita here:- http://youtu.be/2-wjdGkOSUA

Any questions, please feel free to ask. o' toodles :-)  









Sunday, 9 February 2014

How to make Nigerian Puff Puff

Hey guys, hope you are all having a wonderful sunday evening and looking forward to the love week ;-)

Alot of people have been sending me messages to make puff puff, I finally decided to make it on this very cold sunday evening. Pictures below...

Enjoy xxx

Ingredients

250g of Plain Flour
2 tablespoons of Dried active yeast
Sugar to taste
3 pinches of Salt
Luke warm water for mixing
20ml of fresh milk- optional
1 teaspoon of Nutmeg
Sunflower/Olive oil for frying (any preference)
Deep pot or saucepan for frying














Instructions

As I was using dried yeast, I had to dissolve the mixture before use. So place the yeast in a little mixing bowl, add some lukewarm water, a tiny bit of sugar to taste, whisk well until it fully dissolves. I must say the yeast stinks lol (remember I warned you lol).



The Yeast mixture (absolutely stinks lol)


Next step is to place the plain flour in a large bowl, add the nutmeg, sugar, salt, milk and your mixed yeast. Mix all together including the water; make sure you add the water gently and mix with your hand making sure you get rid of all the lumps in the mixture until you have a good blend of all the ingredients. Remember you want a nice smooth batter and not watery batter.














Once the batter is smooth (not watery), cover with an aluminium foil and a napkin (using both aluminium and napkin makes it warmer and quicker to rise)
Store in a warm area for 45mins to an hour depending on the room temperature.





After an hour, the batter should have risen in quantity and will have some air bubbles. Place the saucepan on the cooker and add about half a litre of oil or at least 3 inches deep and leave to heat up for 15mins on low heat.

Note:- If the oil quantity is not enough, you'll end up with pancakes and not puff puff so the more the better.

Place a drop of batter in the oil to test if the oil is hot enough, if it sizzles and pops back up the oil surface, then the oil is ready. Scoop some batter into the oil with your hand by pressing the batter to come out from between your thumb & index finger (if you've got timy hands like me, you'll struggle here a bit lol, so take care).  Repeat this process and fry in the oil until you run out of space in the saucepan. Fry until both sides are golden brown and flip regularly to avoid the puff puff getting burnt.

After frying, place the puff puff in a plate of kitchen towel to absorb the oil residue






Check out the video on Youtube here:- 
Voila.. Enjoy.. 



Friday, 7 February 2014

Happy February and Happy New New 2014 lol

Firstly can I just start by apologising to all my supporters, readers and viewers.. I am extrememly sorry I even had to include lol in my blog title. It has been a hot minute guys, I have been so busy... Guess what, I got MARRIED (yayyyyyyyy) yes my best friend and I married in June 2013 hence why I have been MIA on here (no excuse).. Not really because I got married and I don't wanna scare people who are single from getting married because trust me its the best thing in the world.. Anyways guys I just popped here to apologise to you guys and also to let you know that i'll be back pretty soon; I am working on an amazing project and as soon as that's done, I'll have all the time in the world for my supporters. Thank you so much for taking time out to read this; o 'toodles #saiprojects :-)