A little background and why I have written soup like so…. “soup”. I remember when I arrived in England some years back now and one day my big sister, who has been living here for a while said to me, would you like some soup Aijay? And I said, oh yes please. And she came up to me with a bowl of watery, light and drinkable stuff. And I was like, that is soup? And she said yeah! Here soup is a different ball game bebe!
Again in my country, “soup” is everything that the soup here isn’t. It’s thick, heavy , and I not at all drinkable….more like eatable and has got lots of meat and/or fish in it. Most importantly is that fact that we eat it with something else on the side called, Gari made from dried ground cassava. It can be likened to the feel and texture of semolina. So we make the soup and then we eat it together with Gari….yumm yumm. Although I must say that at some point when I was on a diet in Nigeria, I would opt to eat the soup on it’s own which isn’t actually a bad idea so I urge you to give this one a try on it’s own and you’ll see why .
So Okra soup is the one I have been craving for like a mad woman recently. Although in Nigeria there is an assortment of different kinds of wonderfully delicious soups. Some of my favorites include Egusi soup (egusi is melon seeds that have been gound), Edikaikong soup (lots and lots of different vegetables cooked with a whole lot of palm oil) and Oha soup (this one is a little light and cooked with special Okazi leaves that make it taste like mmmmm….heaven)
Ok for this jazz-ed up yummy and I must add, very simplified version of the yummy classic, you’ll need the following for 2 to 3 people:
- 500g Okra
- 1 red onion (medium sized)
- 1 garlic clove
- 2 scotch bonnet chillies
- 3 heaped Tbsp chopped tomatoes
- 2/3 cup sunflower oil
- 1 and half vegetable bouillon
- A handful of spinach (finely chopped)
- 3 cups of water
- Salt to taste
Ps- couldn’t really explain how to chop okra so I decided to put up my first video. Now I only chop it by hand because that’s how I started chopping it when I was a wee lass and using a chopping board just doesn’t do it for me but please feel free to use your chopping boards for this. It’s probably easier and you won’t get thumb cramps like me because I’ve been out of practice..
Ok to begin:
- Blend your garlic and chilli with ½ cup of water until nice and smooth and set aside
- Add oil onions and fry on medium heat until soft then stir in the tomatoes and leave to cook for 10 minutes.
- Stir in your beautifully chopped okra and stir thoroughly until evenly coated with the onion tomato juice.
- Now add the rest of the water, garlic and chilli blend, the stock cubes and freshly ground coriander seeds (if using) stirring to combine
- Leave to cook for another 10 minutes and turn of the heat
- Scatter on your chopped spinach and mix it in properly with the soup. Cover for a few minutes so the heat from the okra cooks it aaaaaaaand (drumroll)….you’re ready to eat . Enjoy mes amis!