Egusi soup

Pounded yam and Egusi soup

Hi there, welcome to cooking reviews where we share legit cooking tips and satisfy our readers with whatever they need in cooking. Today we will be doing justice to a popular Nigerian meal called Pounded yam and Egusi soup.

Egusi soup

If you need the recipe for this Nigerian meal please read the end of this article for detailed information about this dish.

Amongst other Nigerian soups, Egusi soup is one of the most popular soups eaten in Nigeria accompanied by pounded yam and some other side dishes such as Fufu (akpu), Eba, Amala, semovita, etc.

See more recipes: Edikaikong soup – Homemade Edikaikong soup recipe

What exactly are Egusi soup and pounded yam?

Egusi seed unpeeled
Egusi melon seed unpeeled

Egusi soup is made with a variety of ingredients, but has the main ingredient “Egusi melon seed”. Egusi melon seed is a seed rich in protein gotten from cucurbitaceous plants like (squash, melon, and gourd), which after being peeled dried, and grounded can be used as a motor ingredient in making this delicious Nigerian meal known as Egusi soup.

Egusi seed peeled
Egusi melon seed peeled

Egusi soup as said earlier is Made from Egusi melon seeds, which are found In some parts of Nigeria. Egusi soup is considerably cooked with different local variations.

In Nigeria, Egusi soup is common among many tribes ranging from the southwestern Yoruba, Efik, Ibibio, and Annang people of south-south Nigeria.

Egusi is not necessarily an original Yoruba soup despite the different style and method of cooking, since It is eaten by the west Africans from the Igbo tribe to Ghana where it is known as “akatoa” or ” agushi”.

This Egusi melon seed can also be used in making stew and is very popular in palaver sauce. Aside from Egusi melon seed, Egusi soup consists of ingredients including, oil, meat, pumpkin leaf, bitter leaf, etc.

While pounded yam, on the other hand, is one of the side dishes of Egusi soup, it is also known as íyan and is a Nigerian native food that is mostly made or eaten by the Yoruba, Igbo, Ebira, Tiv, Efik, and other ethnic groups.

It is a traditional meal and has a different method and preparation. It is popularly made by pounding a well-cooked boiled yam in a mortar and pestle,

it can also be made by boiling yam and using a blender to process it, but it is best made by pounding a well-cooked yam in a mortar and pestle.

Pounded yam is very similar to mashed potatoes but quite denser. Pounded yam has a smooth texture and can be eaten with the hands or with cutleries.

How to make pounded yam and Egusi soup

Haven’t discussed what pounded yam and Egusi soup is we will be looking at how to make this popular Nigerian dish very easy and can be eaten in any part of the world.

Recipe for Pounded yam and Egusi soup

Ingredients for Egusi soup:

  1. Egusi melon seed – 2 cups
  2. Pumpkin leaf- 340g
  3. Stockfish
  4. Dried fish
  5. Beef
  6. Chicken
  7. Goat meat ( Mutton)
  8. Fresh pepper
  9. Crayfish
  10. Seasoning cubes – 3 cubes
  11. Salt to taste
  12. Red oil (palm oil)
  13. Onion – 2 medium finely chopped

Note: all these ingredients can be bought from a supermarket or a foodstuff market

Ingredients for pounded yam:

  1. Tuber yam – 1 medium size
  2. Water – for boiling the yam.
  • Egusi melon seed: this ingredient can be gotten supermarket or a foodstuff market. Measure out two cups of a dried melon seed and grind till smooth then set aside.
  • Pumpkin leaf (ugwu): wash your pumpkin leaf thoroughly with little salt and water, then slice and place in a sieve for its water to drain out.
  • Stock: in getting your stock, place your stock fish, dried fish, beef, chicken, and goat meat in a pot season it and boil then sieve out your stock( meat water).
  • Onions and fresh pepper: finely dice your onions and blend them with your fresh pepper.
  • Tuber yam: the best yam to use for pounded yam and is mostly used is PUNA YAM.
  • Crayfish: blend your Crayfish and set it aside.

See more recipes: How to make Aglio e olio pasta – aglio e olio and its recipe

Procedures or instructions on making Egusi soup

Egusi soup

  • Place a pot on fire at medium heat wash in your chicken, beef, goat meat, dried fish, and stock fish, Season with onions (finely chopped), seasoning cubes, and salt to taste,

then allow to simmer for 2 minutes then add water slightly above the level of the meat and allow to boil for 10-20 minutes. Afterward, sieve out the stock (meat water) and set it aside.

  • Place another pot on fire at medium heat add in your palm oil when hot add you’re grounded egusi melon seed and stir.

Stir once in a while for 5-8 minutes for it to get done, to know if it is done the palm oil will be above the melon seed while frying.

  • Add in your stock (water from meat), crayfish, blended onion and pepper mixture, seasoning cubes, and salt, and stir gently then add in your meat (chicken, beef, goat meat, dried fish, stock fish) then cover and allow to cook for 3-5 mins
  • Afterward, add your sliced pumpkin leaf don’t stir just cover for 1-2 mins. Then stir gently
  • Finally, your Egusi soup is set and ready for consumption.

Procedures or instructions in making pounded yam

Using mortar and pestle

Pounded yam using mortar and pestle

  • Using a knife peel your yam neatly and get rid of any spots or discoloration
  • Place in a bowl add water, wash off all dirt and cut into bits, and place in a pot.
  • Place the pot on fire at high heat add water above the yam level and boil for 20 minutes until soft and tender.
  • After that sieve out the water and set it aside. Then make sure your mortar and pestle are ready and washed
  • Using the pestle Pound the yam until smooth and stretchy in the Mortal. This step requires energy but it is worth it.
  • While pounding add water if the pounded yam is hard to give it that soft and tender texture.
  • Serve on a plate and eat with your Egusi soup.

Using a blender

Blending yam

Just like you processed your pounded yam using a mortar and pistol apply the same procedure here:

  • Cut yam into smaller pieces and boil for 20 minutes until soft
  • Place boiled yam in a food processor or blender to process the cooked yam. Process it for a while then check if smooth. If then
  • Shape into any size you desire and serve

Best served hot!!!

Frequently asked questions (FAQS)

What else can I take with Egusi soup?

  • Aside from pounded yam egusi soup can be taken with Fufu (akpu), Eba, semovita, Amala, Tuwo (made by the Hausas), Wheat, etc.

When can I eat Egusi soup and pounded yam?

  • In most West African countries Egusi soup and pounded yam can be taken as lunch and dinner. If taken as dinner allow it to digest well before going to bed whichever is your preference choose wisely.

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Important Note

  1. Ensure to wash your vegetable (pumpkin leaf) to avoid dirt in your soup.
  2. Always make sure you set out all your ingredients before you start cooking.

Egusi soup and pounded yam

Health benefits of Egusi soup and pounded yam

Health benefits of Egusi soup

  1. Egusi soup has its main ingredient egusi melon seed which contains phytosterols that helps in lowering bad (low-density lipoprotein) LDL.
  2. Also, the seeds are very rich in protein, carbohydrates, dietary fiber, and essential amino acids.
  3. Egusi soup contains pumpkin leave that is rich in iron.
  4. Maintains the health of the nervous system
  5. It contains minerals essential for the formation of your bones such as potassium, calcium, magnesium, and phosphorus.
  6. Improve vision
  7. It contains dietary fiber that is good for the body due to its ability to aid digestion.
  8. Egusi soup contains a high amount of unsaturated fatty acids and this makes it beneficial for the heart.

Health Benefits of pounded yam.

  • Yam contains a high percentage of carbohydrates. Making it a good source of energy
  • Yam also supplies the body with minerals such as potassium to help keep blood pressure in check.
  • It also contains potassium which helps reduce hypertension and regulate the blood vessels for healthy blood flow.

Having read the health benefits of both egusi soup and pounded yam imagine the two joined together, you will not only enjoy its wonderful taste but also the health benefits it gives.

This is going to wrap up this blog post, no doubt with this article I believe you’ll be able to make standard Pounded yam and Egusi soup without stress. Should in case you encounter any difficulty drop it in the comment box below.

See also: 7 Food Safety tips for Your Commercial Kitchen

By Chef Victor

I am chef Victor, from Nigeria. I cook Nigerian as well as continental dishes I have been a practising chef since 2018.

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