How to Cook Afang Soup ‘Ukazi’; Recipes, Methods and Procedure

See the step-by-step guide on how to cook Afang soup. Do you want your patrons begging for more? Read the steps in cooking this famous traditional delicacy in such a way to bring life and excitement to their taste-buds!

Have you ever perceived the scent of washed, fresh, and sliced Afang leaves?  Simply put, this leaf is one of the most pleasant scents of natural green vegetables used in Nigerian cuisine.

Their aroma depicts serenity, naturalness, freshness, purity, simplicity, and uniqueness.

If you are familiar with eating the famous and sister soup to Edikang Ikong – Afang soup, you would probably know that its pleasant and fresh aroma could create the longing for the tasty and delicious soup that is indigenous to the Efiks and Ibibios (Calabar and Akwa Ibom respectively).

How to Cook Afang Soup ‘Ukazi’; Recipes, Methods and Procedure

No wonder, it has become today’s Nigerian popular delicacy. In fact, if a restaurant does not have one in its menu, it means – business neva start!

Although it is prepared along with waterleaf, the Afang leaf is what characterises the main dish – Afang soup. Its botanical name is Gnetum Africanum.

In the Igbo language, it is known as ‘Ukazi’, while it is commonly referred to as the ‘wild spinach’ in the western world.

Afang leaves are known to be climbing leafy plants and are easy to grow in your garden. Afang leaves vary slightly in taste and scent. Usually the ones with sweeter scent taste a lot better in soups.

Afang leaves have lots of benefit to the body health wise and is widely used for treatment in ailment and diseases in African traditional medicine.

Nevertheless, it is an excellent source for protein, vitamins, calcium, manganese, zinc, sodium, aspartic acid, potassium, copper, dietary fibre, leucine, essential amino acids and Iron – essentially for the production of red blood cells.

These are some of the reasons why you should not miss eating this mouth-watering delicacy -Afang soup.

So take the moment to go through the steps involved in its preparation and try it out yourself.

Recipes for Afang Soup

400g weight of Fresh Afang leaves

1kg weight of Fresh Waterleaves

1kg weight of Assorted meats (Cow meat, bush meat, goat meat etc)

300g weight of Kpomo (cow skin)

400g weight of Stock fish

2-3 milk tin cups of Cray fish

400g weight Osong Ekot Dry fish

Whole Dry prawns

Snails (Ekwong) – numbers optional

1 milk tin cup of Periwinkle (shelled)

Fresh red hot pepper

Little Salt

1-2 Chicken Maggi size of Bouillon cubes

2 bulbs of medium size Onions

Palm oil – discreet amount

Stock (from cooked assorted meat)

Pre-Preparation

  1. Wash thoroughly and slice both Afang leaves and waterleaves and place them in separate containers. Because Afang leaf is usually tougher in texture than the conventional leaves such as waterleaves and pumpkin leaves, it is usually best to pound it until it is very soft. Notice, when you feel the texture of the pounded leaves in your hand; it is usually very smooth, dark green and soft. You could also perceive the aroma of the fresh leaves; this is what holds the excitement of cooking Afang.

 

  1. The other part of the preparation involves properly washing, cleaning and cutting into chunks the assorted meats you intend to use. Kpomo too should be washed and chopped to slightly smaller pieces for garnishment.

 

  1. Equally wash the snails (Ekwong) properly to get rid of the slimy fluid. You can do so with grape juice or lime juice. As for the periwinkle, ensure that it is well-trimmed on both top and bottom of the shell. Thoroughly wash and shake it with salt and water to remove dirt.

 

  1. Wash both your stock fish and dry fish with boiling water and salt to remove dirt and insects clinging to it. Cut into pieces. Size is optional. The stock fish is usually hard, so you may have to soak it in boing water for about 30 minutes to soften it. Ensure to remove sharp and edgy bones ones not easily identified in soup.  Safety first.

 

  1. Wash and chop onions.

 

  1. Ground the cray fish and red hot pepper. Let the pepper be washed before grounded.

 

Preparation

  1. Cook the assorted meat with sliced onions, grounded pepper and tasty seasonings to enhance the taste of the stock. This stage is important because your seasoned stock is the water you need to garnish the taste of the main dish. In that case, you must replenish your stock with adequate water for cooking. Ensure that the seasonings are of proportionate amount with the quantity of water. In other words, don’t let the quantity of water bury the delicious taste of your seasonings. Cook for about 30-40 minutes.

 

  1. Cook kpomo and stock fish separately with little garnishment. You could also add grounded pepper. Kpomo is usually sticky so when cooked ensure to drain its water.

 

  1. Lower the fire after the meats are soft and tender for chewing.

 

  1. Add stock fish, dry fish or Osong-Ekot (a type of dry fish), dry prawns, crayfish, grounded red- hot pepper, sliced onions to the stock and bouillon cubes, .

 

  1. Add palm oil to the stock while on fire and allow simmering for about 3 minutes. This is to allow the palm oil blend with the stock. Ensure that you are using a good quality of palm oil. You don’t need one that would overwhelm the taste of the stock.

 

  1. Next, add the shredded waterleaves.
  2. Subsequently, add Afang leaves to the stock while on fire and allow simmering for about 8 minutes.
  3. Taste and see if there is need to add more of pepper or cray fish at this point.
  4. Gently stir the soup with care and take off the fire immediately to prevent food from burning.
  5. Mmmm… soup is done!

 

Serving Suggestions

There is a wide option of ‘balls’ to serve with your delicious Afang soup. You can serve Afang soup alongside with Semolina, Fufu, Pounded Yam, or Yellow Garri.

The latter is a very agreeable match that complements the sweet tantalizing taste of this delicacy. You can as well rinse your throat with a bottle of chilled malt.

Afang soup is the kind of soup you shouldn’t miss out in your choice of Nigerian delicacies.

Regardless of your background, language, or the ethnicity you belong to, try out this recipe and the experience would be yours. Bon appétit!…Enjoy the taste!…Dia kop inem!

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