So the 3rd quarter of the year is drawing to a close and we'll me having much cooler mornings and nights, basically the last quarter of the year is Peppersoup Season.
Delicious peppersoup is very easy to make, as long as you have all the correct ingredients. It requires very little oversight and can be cooked even in a pressure pot or slow cooker.
Side note: Oxtail peppersoup (Yes, Nigerians make peppersoup with oxtail too) cooked low and slow in a slow cooker for 3-6 hours is nothing short of heavenly!!!
This is my basic recipe for all peppersoups, but of course if you're using chicken your cook time will be shorter and even shorter for fish. For fish, i season my fish and keep in the refrigerator overnight. At cook time, i get the broth/soup going and then add my fish half way through.
Same applies for if you want to add yam or unripe plantain; get your soup going then about 10-15 minutes to the end of cook time (depending on the size of your cuts of yam and/or plantain), add it into the soup.
For my non-Nigerian readers, i apologize, but all of the ingredients here are listed in their local Nigerian names. If you go to any Nigerian/African store with a list, they'll know exactly what you need. I will look up their English names and update the blog with time. Also note that it is called PEPPERsoup, it is really HOT!
Ok, lets get started with this peppersoup. You will need;
1Kg Goat Meat
2 Tablespoons Peppersoup Spice
1 Teaspoon Crushed Uda
1/2 Red Onion
Scotch Bennet Peppers (As many as you can handle)
1 Tablespoon Uziza Seeds
Salt and 3 Seasoning Cubes
1/2 Teaspoon Ground Ehuru
1 Teaspoon Hot Curry (Optional)
1 Teaspoon Ginger
2 Tablespoons Chopped Scent Leaf (Nchanwu) - If you must, due to availability, you can supplement with basil.
Cheesecloth and String
Have your butcher cut up your goat meat into bite sizes and please do not request boneless meat, bones bring so much flavor to meat cooking. Season your meat with salt, pepper, ginger, garlic and 1 seasoning cube and leave over night, or for at least 1 hour in the refrigerator.
Transfer meat into a pot, and half of your onions and cook with just enough water to cover it. Cook for about 20 minutes.
I like to pre-cook my goatmeat to get that flavor deep inside it before adding the rest of the water for the soup. Starting with a lot of water for the soup in the beginning will still give you a good soup, but less flavorful meat.
While the meat is cooking i put my uda seeds in my cute little mortar and pound it a little, just enough to bruise and crack it, but not crush it completely. You can also used ground uda powder.
Next i double up and lay out my cheesecloth, place my oshokirisho (that's the weird looking pod on the left), uziza and uda.
Tie it up to make a nice little parcel and place it into my soup.
The spices inside the cheesecloth will infuse into your soup just fine and at the end of the cook time, you easily fish it out and discard. No need to bite into stray uziza seed in your soup and set your mouth on fire or have to navigate around dried bits of this and that when serving your soup.
Blend your scotch bonnet peppers with your remaining onions and add it to the soup, add 2 seasoning cubes, ehuru and peppersoup spice, 4 cups of water and taste for salt. I like to add hot curry, or Jamaican curry because it has a beautiful flavor, and yes it does taste slightly different from regular curry.
Shout out to Foodace for sending me her spices!
Allow your soup to cook on medium heat for 1 hour.
2 minutes before taking your soup off the heat, add chopped scent leaf and stir.
Serve up and enjoy by itself or with white boiled rice.