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Contrary to opinions from other African countries, #NigerianJollof is top 2 and not number 2. This easy recipe involves rice cooked in a rich tomato broth, and is a standard go-to meal for people of Nigerian origin but enjoyed by other cultures. It is known for its spiciness which can be adjusted to tolerance, and flavourful moist texture when served hot. It requires specific ingredients for the Jollof flavour and can be eaten alongside salads, plain plantains or popular Nigerian gizzard and plantain delicacy called Gizdodo, with any protein of choice such as chicken or fish. Up for the challenge?
Serves 4 (generous servings)
4 cups (350g) uncooked long grain rice
6 medium plum tomatoes
1 scotch bonnet or other hot chilli (adjust to tolerance)
4 large red peppers, deseeded and roughly chopped
1 tsp of mixed herbs
2 tbs of Nigerian curry/mild curry powder
4 tbs tomato puree
3 bay leaves
2 garlic cloves, thinly chopped
2 medium onions – 1 ½ diced and ½ sliced thinly
Salt (to taste)
Black & white pepper, garlic powder, ginger powder, 2 cubes or tsp stock powder
1 litre of chicken/beef broth or vegetable stock
2-3 tbs of vegetable oil
Combine tomatoes, chilli, red peppers and one diced onion in a blender then put the mixture in a pot to boil and settle down for about 10 mins allowing some water to dry out.
In a large pot put your vegetable oil, half diced onion and chopped garlic to caramelise for 3 minutes while stirring to avoid it burning. Then add your tomato paste to fry for 2 minutes and stir.
Transfer your boiled down tomato blend (reduced by half from the boil) to the large pot and mix it together. Add salt, curry, mixed herbs, pepper, garlic and ginger powder and stock powder to taste, then cover to boil into a tomato broth for 5 minutes.
Wash your rice in boiled/hot water and sieve, then drain and add to the tomato broth. Mix well.
Add the liquid stock and enough water to cover the rice.
Put the bay leaves in the pot and cover. For a tighter fit, seal the pot with foil before putting the lid on lock the Jollof flavour and give a roast effect. Cook on medium heat for 25-30 minutes.
Check the rice for softness and add more water if it's not soft enough then cook for a few more minutes.
When fully cooked, remove bay leaves and mix the thinly sliced onions into the rice.
This recipe was written by our Hackney intern Warami.