Welcome to the EazyNaijaFoods blog bringing you the taste and flavours of Nigeria.
Today we are introducing the stew. The Nigerian stew is a tomato based sauce made with a blend of tomatoes, onions, chilli and spices fried in oil to which one may add protein of choice such as Beef, Chicken, Fish or even all of these and offal fondly termed ‘assorted’. The stew is an essential part of the Nigerian menu. In a day, most people will eat stew at some point or a home must have a pot of stew ready to form a part of a meal.
The extremely versatile stew may be eaten with rice, yam, beans, bread and pasta, spaghetti and potatoes. The stew can form a base for other meals like jollof rice or added to soups like Okra or Ogbono (African Mango Seed).
There is no specific recipe for the stew save for the ingredients which can be blended in a variety of ways to create a different taste. One can also use different types of oils to create different flavour. The palm oil stew with dry fish has a significantly different taste from the fresh fish stew with vegetable or olive oils.
Healthwise, I daresay that the stew is a healthy sauce. Tomatoes are low in carbohydrate and are the major dietary source of the antioxidant lycopene, which has been linked to many health benefits, including reduced risk of heart disease and cancer. They are also a great source of vitamin C, potassium, folate, and vitamin K.
They also contain fiber particularly when one uses fresh tomatoes such as we do in Nigeria.
While the tasty Nigerian stew is ‘fried’ i.e. cooked with a generous amount of oil, one can choose the make the stew with either a healthier oil of choice or no oil at all.
A simple stew recipe is below
3 tins plum tomatoes
2 large onions
2 scotch bonnet peppers
2 bell peppers
1 cup oil
2 Stock cubes
Salt and Spices to taste
Protein of choice
Blend your tomatoes, onions and peppers in blender. Pour the fresh tomato blend into a pot and cook at high heat till almost all the water has dried.
Add the vegetable oil. Stir very well and reduce the heat to moderate.
Continue to fry while you add your cooked chicken or meat and allow the flavours to blend. Add your stock cube and spices to taste.
A well fried stew will have streaks of oil at the top but this is not essential. Leave to cook for altogether 30 – 45mins and switch off when you are happy with the taste.
Alternatively EazyNaijaFoods supply a Ready made stew in a sachet in both hotpot and mild varieties. The Ready Stew is made with fresh ingredients and packed without preservatives. With its authentic Nigerian taste it saves one a lot in time and effort. Use coupon code EAZYNAIJAFOODS10 at checkout to get 10% off of your order.