The Pretend Chef

Cayenne Pepper Stew (Shombo Stew)

Spicy Cayenne Pepper Stew (Shombo Stew)

Cayenne pepper stew (Shombo stew) is a stew made with Fresh cayenne pepper with no tomatoes added. Nigerians and their numerous stews, we love our stews which are mostly made up of a combination of tomatoes and peppers, tomato being the main ingredient.

Tomatoes and peppers are nutrient rich fruits. Cayenne pepper by itself is high in vitamins A, B and C, minerals, flavonoids and carotenoids. It aids digestion, acts as an

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Oto Mboro (Unripe banana porridge)

Oto Mboro, Unripe plantain porridge

Oto Mboro is a porridge made with grated or pureed unripe bananas and vegetables. Similar to Ikokore (water yam porridge) and plantain porridge. It is delicious and healthy, so much so that it is part of the food given to young maidens who are confined in the fattening rooms of the Efik and Ibibio tribes of Cross River and Akwa Ibom states of South-South Nigeria. It is high in nutrients but quite low in calories. Oto Mboro is also ideal as a healthy weaning meal for babies.

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Bushmeat and Vegetable

Special Bushmeat and Vegetable

Meat, Recipes, Salads | June 11, 2017 | By

In Nigeria, the success of a party is judged by the quantity, variety and availability of food and drink. Variety is a key factor, most especially, variety in meat, fish and seafood dishes. Sometimes, the variety is so much that they are brought out in phases. This could include suya, nkwobi, isi-ewu, peppered chicken with various pepper dips, homework, pepper soup, peppered bush meat, cow head pomo (skin), oxtail, peppered snail or gizzard, Asun, slabs of dry fish or stockfish steamed in pepper sauce, tiger prawns, fried croaker fish etc. Bushmeat and vegetable will

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Nigerian Cornish Pasty

Desserts/ finger food, Meat | June 8, 2017 | By

Nigerian Cornish pasty is a wholesome hand pie filled with meat and vegetables. The few times I have bought Cornish Pasty in Nigeria, have been underwhelming. More like a meat pie with a different name, so I now make my own. 

I love Cornish pasty not just because it’s awesome but it is full of history and I love anything with history and culture. To learn about the history and regulations of Cornish pasty visit

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25 Amazing facts about tiger nut flour

25 amazing facts about tiger nut flour

When we hear flour we automatically think wheat, refined or unrefined, then corn and maybe a few other grain flours. Tiger nut flour ‘Cyperus esculentus’ is not your everyday flour, it is totally special not just because it tastes good but the health benefits are enormous. Also, it is not a nut flour being that tiger nut is a tuber.

There are other kinds of flour commonly used besides wheat flour like corn, rice, rye, oat, barley, potato, almond etc. There are also the not so common flours like amaranth, spelt, quinoa and the very unusual ones like coffee and grapeseed flours. In Nigeria, the most utilised flours will be

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30 Amazing Facts About Tigernut Milk

30 amazing facts about tigernut milk

Besides eating tigernuts whole, a delicious wholesome non-dairy milk can be made out of them. It is called Kunnu Aya in Nigeria and Chufa de Horchata in Spain. Tigernut milk is white, sweet and creamy. Although tigernut ‘Cyperus esculentus’ is not a nut, it is a tuber but milk is extracted from it like any nut milk.

Tigernut milk is produced commercially in Spain and can be bought in shops. It comes in different forms, Natural tigernut milk, Pasteurised natural tigernut milk, Sterilised tigernut milk, UHT tigernut milk, Concentrate

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Gbegiri beans soup

Gbegiri, Creamy yoruba beans soup

I read somewhere that if the Yorubas of Western Nigeria were to have a flag, it will be the colours of Abula. Abula is a combination of Gbegiri, Ewedu and Obe Omi. I also heard that Gbegiri is an unhindered express road to a man’s heart, hmm…men will have to confirm that. It might just answer the age-old question, ‘what do men want?’ Gbegiri.

To be honest,

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Plain Okro Soup (Ila)

Fresh Plain okro soup with Omi Obe and Amala

Plain okro soup is different from the one pot okro soup, it is cooked to be accompanied by the versatile Omi Obe (stew). They make an exquisite pair. I first ate plain okro with Omi Obe in the boarding school. At first, it was a shock to me seeing stew and eba (garri fufu) served together, then there was this pool of seemingly uncooked okro right in the middle. Did somebody forget to stir the soup in the pot? Did they forget to add the okro when the soup was being cooked?  By the way who serves stew and eba? Coming from the Eastern part of Nigeria, I had only known the one pot Okro soup with green leafy vegetables. Eventually

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Ewedu Soup

Simple Ewedu soup

Ewedu soup is the soup my Yoruba friend, Shade loved and always raved about in secondary school. In the refectory, we were being served stew and Plain okro soup and the times I ate it I liked it, strange though. So I promised myself that one day I will get to eat Ewedu soup.

The opportunity presented itself at the early stage of Buka surfing in Lagos which my Sister-in-law and I indulge in, I remembered Shade and ordered Ewedu soup. After staring at it for awhile

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Omi Obe (Stew)

Omi Obe (Stew) with goat ear

To the Yorubas of Western Nigeria, Omi Obe is a ubiquitous stew/soup. Literarily translated as watery stew, it serves so many purposes and as a Nigerian home cook, it is one dish that should never be missing from your freezer. It will save you in many culinary emergencies, I speak from experience. For the flavour it packs, Omi Obe is surprisingly very simple to make with simple everyday ingredients.

Whenever I am in Lagos, my Sister-in-law and I go Buka surfing or revisit some of our favourite ones. No two buka stews taste exactly the same, but most are really, really good and the variety of meat can be overwhelming. In fact, some are so good you will be tempted to lick your plate. I also need to mention that my Rennaisance man

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