Alapa stew is a delicious delicacy especially when prepared with stock fish,though using other fishes and meats can still produce the same sweetness because alapa stew it self is a delicious African stew, this article will therefore guide you in the steps by step procedure on how to cook alapa stew with stock fish.
Ingredients used in preparing the alapa stew with stock fish include:
1. Fresh Pepper
Pepper is yet another useful ingredient in preparing alapa stew with stock fish, it gives it that peppery taste, and makes the stew sharper in taste.
Though too much of it can produce a negative effect especially for the asthmatic consumers who don’t like too much pepper in their foods.
Generally pepper should be added moderately so as to enable the consumers to peacefully enjoy the food without having to complain of too much pepper.
Fresh pepper is most suitable for the cooking of alapa stew with stock fish, though other species can still be used depending on the way you want it.
Pepper comes in different varieties, like the red pepper which is commonly seen around and most available and cheaper to buy in the market, we also have the yellow pepper or rather called the Nsukka pepper because it is mainly cultivated in Nsukka area of Enugu State, we also have the one they call green pepper, which is used in cooking fried rice, jollof rice, party rice, or preparing some snacks like shawamma, etc.
We have the one they call dry pepper, which is reddish in colour and mainly used as ground pepper when ground. There is also the tatashe, which is another specie of pepper that is used to cook certain delicacies.
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Onions Just like you find in other dishes, onions is vital in cooking alapa stew, it makes the stew or it gives the stew that sassy taste. Onions can be put more than one times in the course of cooking the alapa stew.
It can be put intermittently as thecooking goes on. Without it, alapa stew may not be that enjoyable to the mouth because it will not be that tasty as you expect it to be, despite the presence of these other ingredients.
Onions comes in different types, we have the white onions and the red onions. Each of them has its unique flavor it adds to any dish you may apply them to.
The white onions is mainly used in preparing such dishes such as fried rice, jollof rice, different types of stews including stock fish stew, etc, while the red ones are used mainly in preparing different types of soups.
Every onions is first peeled to remove the outer cover, then after removing the outer cover , you then wash it thoroughly and chop it or slice it, or you may prefer to blend it as the case may be. Onions is an important ingredient in every dish that should not be overlooked.
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3. Palm oil
Palm oil is the main ingredient here, it form the base of the stew on which the other ingredients are added to. Palm oil stew or alapa stew is very rich in palm oil, and hence very nutritious as palm oil contains plenty of vitamin A.
Palm oil can be locally extracted from its nut and used directly in cooking any dish, by pouring the raw palm nuts in a clean pot and you then add a little water and place on the fire, and allow it to boil for like 30 minutes or until you start seeing the red oil settling on the surface of the water.
Then you put it off the fire and use your hand to squeeze out the oil from the palm nuts while it is still hot or at least warm enough to allow you dip your hands to squeeze out the oil from the palmnut.
After squeezing out the oil from the palm nuts , you then remove or sieve out the residues,which is mainly comprised of palm fibres.
Once this is done then you pour out the oil and apply it directly to your dish. It is said that this method or this type of palm oil processed in this manner add more delicious flavor to your dish more than he ones chemically produced and as well those produced by machine.
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4. Ripe Tomatoes (Fresh) And Tin Tomatoes
These two ingredients, fresh tomatoes and tin tomatoes are very important in cooking alapa stew. Both two ingredients are required in making the stew for the alapa stew.
The fresh tomatoes gives the alapa stew that fresh fruity taste of tomatoes, while the tin one reddens the alapa stew or serves as a colorant to the outward appearance of the alapa stew.
Tomatoes generally are very rich in vitamin A, plus some other vitamins attached to it. Tomatoes can be taken as fruit or used in cooking of stew or certain soups like the egusi soup which makes use of diced tomatoes in its preparation.
When applying tomatoes to your dish except in preparation of snacks, tomatoes whether fresh or tin should be fried a little to remove that citric taste or sour taste as some may call it, for to properly blend with the rest of the ingredients used in cooking the food, otherwise the tomatoes may not completely blend with the rest of your ingredients.
1. 1kg stock fish (cubed)
2. 1kg fresh tomatoes
3. 100g fresh pepper
4. 2 medium sized onions
5. 1 tin tomatoes puree.
6. 150ml palm oil.
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7. Salt to taste
Method of Preparation
a. Wash the cubed pieces of the stock fish
b. Place in a clean pot, season with salt and some sliced onions.
c. Heat oil in a pot fry the ground ingredients for 10 minutes
d. Add tomatoes puree and stir in thoroughly
e. Finally add the cooked meat and meat stock.
f. Stir thoroughly, allow to simmer through for 15 minutes.
g. Remove from the fire and serve with boiled rice or yam, it can now be combined with ewedu or okra sauce and serve with eba or with amala or gari.
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