Yesterday our friend, Lyndia brought us a Nigerian specialty and one of their favorite things to eat. How nice of her to share such treats with us! She makes it for special occasions in her family and wanted us to experience some real Nigerian food!
So, first you start with Eba--which is made of cassava. Sort of tasted like cornmeal to me. It is the carbohydrate of the meal.
The soup can also be eaten with rice or pounded yam or foofoo.
Being served right in our office! Hot egusi soup with eba!
I needed a lesson on just how to eat such a dish. First, break off a little piece of eba (kind of has the consistency of play dough), roll it in a ball and dip into the soup!
This is the bowl of egusi--not sure of all the ingredients but it has many kinds of protein--stockfish, crayfish and beef that I know of. The green specks are a bitter leaf that Lyndia showed us yesterday--they just looked like regular tree leaves to me but she told me she would wash it very well to get rid of the bitterness and then use in the soup. There are tiny white seeds that she called melon seeds (I think that is what she said)--egusi seeds. And--the binding ingredient is natural palm oil. Lyndia assures me that this is the perfect food--has all the food groups represented--and would make us strong and healthy!
And so we ate...............
It actually had a good taste but not something I could eat a lot of. Lyndia was very disappointed when she came back and we had not eaten the bone (not sure if it was bone--sort of the grisel or tendon on beef brisket) as that is something they treasure! Look how wasteful we North Americans are--we think bones are to throw away! We have been intrigued earlier that, when chicken is served, most Nigerians eat many of the bones as well as the meat. Again--making use of every little piece!
All in all--another great experience and a good journal entry!