This post covers the following topics:
- Egusi Soup And Its Value In Nigeria
- How To Prepare Egusi Soup (Melon Soup)
- Cooking Egusi Soup (Melon Soup) Without Frying The Milled Seed
- Advantage Of Not Frying The Milled Egusi Seeds (Melon Seeds) While Cooking Egusi Soup (Melon Soup)
- Disadvantage Of Not Frying The Milled Egusi Seeds (Melon Seeds) While Cooking Egusi Soup (Melon Soup)
- Cooking Egusi Soup (Melon Soup) By Frying The Milled Egusi Seeds (Melon Seeds)
- Advantage Of Frying The Egusi Seeds (Melon Seeds) While Cooking Egusi Soup (Melon Soup)
- Disadvantage Of Frying The Egusi Seeds (Melon Seeds) While Cooking Egusi Soup (Melon Soup)
Egusi soup (Melon soup) is one of the popular soups in Nigeria that is adopted and appreciated by all tribes. Egusi soup (Melon soup) can blend with any type of swallow such as Semo, Akpu, Garri, Pounded yam, starch, and lots more. Almost every tribe in Nigeria has their unique way of preparing the popular Egusi soup (Melon soup), yet no one can easily say to any kind of Egusi soup presented with good swallow counterpart even if such was prepared by another tribe.
Cooking Egusi soup (Melon soup) is not difficult and the pattern you are going to use depends on the pattern that best suits you. In Nigeria, the Egusi soap prepared by an Igbo woman restaurant seems different from the one prepared by a Yoruba woman restaurant, the same for the northern parts of Nigeria. In a real sense, every location in Nigeria has a special way of preparing Egusi soup (Melon soup).
However, the most popular method of preparing Egusi soup (Melon soup) is to cook it the way it is usually cooked during public occasions. While some eastern parts of Nigeria add bitter leaves and pumpkin leaves in Egusi soup (Melon soup), some parts of Nigeria and Africa at large may cook the Egusi soup (Melon soup) with different vegetables or without any vegetable. Also, some mold balls of Egusi inside the Egusi soup (Melon soup) while cooking it.
Let’s assume you want to prepare Egusi soup (Melon soup) the occasional way in the eastern part of Nigeria. This simply means preparing Egusi soup (Melon soup) with either bitter leaves, Oha leaves, Ukazi leaves or Pumpkin leaves and adding special ingredients such as the popular native Maggi, fresh crayfish, and lots more.
Milled or ground melon (Egusi seeds (Melon seeds)) 2 milk cups
Any of the vegetables you prefer. Bitter leaves make the taste a bit bitter you can use Pumpkin leaves (Ugwu leaves). The vegetable shouldn’t be too much at most half of the 4liter custard basin.
Fresh crayfish (big sizes) about 1 milk cup size. Pull out the heads and blend the heads into pieces using an electric blender or pound them in a mortar. Keep the main body inside a bow after washing it.
Fresh red meat. Cut it into 10 pieces for the ten persons that will eat the soup. Wash it properly with clean water and salt then store it in a bow.
1 big head of stockfish. Cut it into small pieces and wash it properly with clean water and salt. Then keep in a separate bow.
Cowskin meat (kpomo). Wash properly with clean water and salt. Cut it into tiny pieces so that it has a similar size to that of the fresh Crayfish. Then keep in a separate bow.
Cut one big size onion into small sizes, you may blend it into pieces alongside your dried crayfish and the native Maggi ball. Blending your Onions, dried crayfish and the native Maggi is the easiest way of reducing the time of pounding them and it provides more taste in the soup when grounded with a blender.
You need your Palm oil, Maggi cups 2pieces, and iodized salt.
- Start by cooking the fresh red meat and the stockfish in the pot that you want to use for the soup. Add half of the water you intend to use for the soup and add 70% of the ingredients you have prepared for the soup and leave everything to start boiling.
2. The next step is to add your milled melon seeds (Egusi seeds (Melon seeds)). Before adding it into the boiling pot, soak into a big bow with a water quantity that is not above its surface and give it time to melt and form clumsy viscosity with the water. If it is too thick with the water add more water until it is soft but not watery. Stir the melon in the bowl until it blends evenly with the water. Doing this will eliminate any chance of forming balls or crumbs of the melon seeds in the soup.
3. Pour the melon into the boiling water and start stirring it immediately with a big spoon or your Garri-turner stick.
4. The moment the melon blends very well with the boiling water, red meats, stockfish, and other ingredients. Add your fresh crayfish into the pot and add the remaining 30% ingredients into the pot including your red oil.
5. Allow the pot to steam for the next 4 minutes before adding your vegetable.
6. If the soup remains about 1 minute to become as thick as you want it to be, then add the vegetable and wait for 1 minute before bringing it down from the stove.
It saves times
It preserves the nutritional values of the Egusi seeds (Melon seeds)
It gives a natural taste to the soap
It consumes lesser palm oil
If not carefully done, balls of Egusi seeds (Melon seeds) will form in the soup after cooking
Sometimes the palm oil will be seen floating on top of the soup or forming separate partition in the soup
- Start by steaming the fresh red meat and the stockfish in a small pot for about 10minutes or until it gets almost 90% cooked. Add pepper, salt, 1 cube of Maggi, sliced onions, and any other seasoning. Bring your own pot from the stove and proceed to fry the milled Egusi seeds (Melon seeds).
- The next step is to fry your milled melon seeds (Egusi seeds (Melon seeds)). To do that, empty the pot you want to use for the soup and place it on the stove.
- The moment the pot becomes dried and very hot, pour in enough quantity of red oil that will be used for the soup. Note that you will not add any other palm oil in the soup except this one used for frying the Egusi seeds (Melon seeds).
- Once the red oil gets hot, pour the milled Egusi seeds (Melon seeds) into it and start stirring the Egusi seed until it mixes very well with the hot palm oil. You can continue the process as long as you can until the milled Egusi seeds (Melon seeds) start appearing dried and their color changes.
- The moment you have fried the milled Egusi seeds (Melon seeds) to the level of dryness you want, pour the meat and fish you cooked earlier with its water into the milled Egusi soup (Melon soup). It will make some cooling sounds.
- Now you can add all the ingredients you want to use for the soup and allow it to steam sometime to thicken very well before adding the vegetable.
- You will only add the vegetable a few minutes to the time to bring down the pot of soup from the stove. After that, your soup is ready to serve.
It helps the Egusi seeds (Melon seeds) to blend with the palm oil and prevents oil from floating on top of the soup after cooking it.
It dries up water from the Egusi seeds (Melon seeds) thereby giving a sharp feeling while chewing anything in the soup.
It is time-consuming
You may mistakenly get the Egusi seeds (Melon seeds) burnt in the process
You may over-fry it and it will lose its natural taste
It can consume more palm oil than cooking it directly
It may lose some of its nutritional values
I believe now you be able to prepare your favorite Egusi soup using any of the above methods. In case you need more explanation or additional contribution, please use the comment section to drop it.