Nigerian Palm Oil Rice and Buying Nigeria (Iwuk Edesi)

There was a recent campaign for Nigerians to buy Nigerian. But if there is one thing to celebrate in Nigeria, it’s our agricultural sector.

Nigeria is rich in mineral resources, but we forget the gold mine we have in our agricultural resources.

One gold mine is the Ofada rice. To people in the diaspora, Ofada rice is gold. To a Nigerian Ofada rice is brown rice to others. Apart from the smell, it is very healthy as it is unpolished and full of fiber.

We as Nigerians, we take our resources for granted. Not only do we rely on oil, but we can rely greatly on agriculture.

The day I heard that Nigeria to imported tooth picks, I almost cried for my country. As many trees and timbers that we have, we are still importing tooth picks.

The Nigerian government, even with the production of various types of rice, continues to import other types of parboiled rice.

Not only must we fight corruption, but we must learn to put things in perspective. we must understand that our country can survive on agriculture too.

I saw a picture of a jollof sauce produced and packed by a Nigerian and a question was asked “would you buy this?” All the Nigerians on that thread vowed never to buy such sauces, but most would rather buy Ketchup made by Heinz. Nothing against Heinz, but if you can buy other condiments made by and in other countries; then you should be able to buy and grow Nigeria. In fact if I was a non-Nigerian on that thread, it would be difficult for me to eat anything Nigerian with the responses I read.

I love Ofada rice and one way I enjoy making it is with palm oil. Not only does the taste work together, it’s also satisfying and trust me when I say it tastes better than parboiled rice.

Recipe below:

Ingredients:

2 cups Ofada rice
1 small onion(chopped or sliced)
1 large dry fish(soaked and washed with hot water)
4tbsps of crayfish (shrimp paste would work, but use in little increments)
1-2 habanero pepper or ata-rodo(sliced or chopped)
1/2 of a cup of sliced Ugu ie. pumpkin leaves or basil or scent leaves(sliced). You could even use Kale as a substitute for Ugu
1tbsp of dry pepper

Method:

wash rice until water runs clear; then drain and set aside
In a medium pot, heat the palm oil(not to bleach, but to melt). Add the onions and sauté until almost translucent. Stir in crayfish for a few seconds(do not burn), add the rice and stir; making sure that the oil coats each grain of rice. Add the meat stock and habanero pepper. Taste for seasonings and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and cover with a foil paper and a tight lid. Let the rice cook for about 10-15 minutes then check for doneness and seasoning. Add the bouillon(if using) or salt as needed. Stir in the dry fish, pumpkin leaves and dry pepper. If the rice is still a little hard, turn off the heat and cover the pot with the foil and lid and let it rest for about 10minutes before serving. You want the grains to be al dente. Garnish with some basil and serve.

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