I have heard tons of great things about carrots in the past and I have really enjoyed cooking with them. It gives my meals some bulk and its own unique flavour but most importantly I am very aware of the benefits of carrots and i thought i’d share them with you today. If you have ever taken any nutrition course in your life, you would be aware of the benefits of Vitamin A. One of the benefits is improved vision.
- Carrots are very rich in Vitamin A so it would be advisable to include some carrots in your meals.
- Some researchers have also found that carrots have some cancer lowering agents. I am not certain of the authenticity of this claim but you can be sure it wont hurt you to eat some carrots.
- Vitamin A also makes your skin glow really nicely so you can already see the need to include some in your meals.
- Carrots also contain some infection clearing agents. You can use carrots on some wounds or cuts that you may have to help kill the organisms that will cause infections.
See how many great things are there about carrots?
What other useful thing do you know about carrots?
Tip: To preserve the freshness of your carrots, wrap it in a newspaper before storing in the fridge.
St Patrick’s day was an interesting day for me. I sat in the kitchen with my mum from the time I woke up at noon till 9pm when I was ready to go to bed. We did everything in the kitchen that day. Cooked, listened to music, skyped with the rest of the family etc. Was really a fun day. I got to learn a few tips and tricks about how to make certain traditional dishes and what local spices to use. I really wish more of these local spices were available internationally but I digress. So being that it was St Patty’s day, I was going to either opt for something green or something alcoholic and I chose the green path. Not sure if my audience is ready for alcohol cooking yet. Maybe you are Soon time.
Anyway, being that green ingredients are not hard to come by in Nigeria, I decided to do a representation of a popular appetizer in Nigeria. Garden eggs and peanuts or peanut butter. I saw a few pictures recently of an event that took place in Abuja and they were served garden eggs and peanuts in a not so pretty way. It caused quite an uproar in the Nigerian community on twitter with people being so shocked that they would even serve that. On the contrary, if it is presented nicely then why not?
For my peanut butter, I added a little dry pepper and african nutmeg while blending the roasted peanuts. If you have no access to African nutmeg, just go ahead with some cayenne pepper or chilli flakes. I also used a tiny knife to take away the core of the garden egg but that was my choice, you can decide to just cut off the top and smear the peanut butter mix on the top of your Garden egg. To garnish, I used pepper seeds as eyes, half a peanut as the nose and a tiny pepper slice as the mouth. I served this with a kiwi smoothie which I blended with yogurt. See I didn’t need alcohol to have fun on St Patty’s day. What did you do for it?
On a sunday evening, my mum suggested we visit my cousin’s house and take some ingredients to make pepper soup. I peeled and washed my unripe plantain, picked a few scent leaves from her garden and washed the goat meat. I seasoned everything, placed in a pot and we were on our merry way. We sat and watched the Re-Run of the AMVCA (African Magic Viewers Choice Awards). Oh did I mention I am on a little holiday in Nigeria? Loving this heat so far by the way. For my pepper-soup, I added a few teaspoons of salt, dry pepper, Maggi and scent leaves to the pot of goat meat and plantain and boiled. I removed the plantain when it was soft to allow the goat meat become softer. When that was ready, I served both to my aunty, uncle, cousin , mum and my dad. It’s safe to say they really enjoyed my pepper soup. What are your go-to sunday meals?
The Nigerian love of plantains has always amazed me. If you ask the typical Nigerian how they like their plantains, many would say fried (dodo), boiled or roasted (bole). It was not until I stepped out of the Nigerian cuisine space that I found many other cultures also like plantain. i have noticed Jamaicans fry their plantains when it is very soft. Not entirely sure why but i’m sure there is a solid reason. Ghanians also make some interesting dishes with plantain and a good example is Kelewele. In some parts of India, Steamed plantain is a delicacy and is most often consumed as a breakfast dish. Recently, I saw a little argument on twitter going on amongst Nigerians and the topic was fried plantains also known as Dodo. Many were not in favour of cooks that salted the plantains before frying and some others loved the salt. Now my question to you today is;
How do you like your fried plantains? Salted or Unsalted?
During Lent, a lot of people give up a whole lot of things as a fast during the period and the very popular food item that people give up is beef. I have heard many people give up chicken as well. I started looking online for some lent inspired recipes and all I saw was fish dishes and shrimp dishes and i’m thinking wait a minute. There is more to cooking meatless dishes than fish and shrimp. Guess what I opted for. SNAILS!!! Truth be told, I would take snails over beef any day. You feel me? Does anyone feel me? No? ok. Anyway enjoy this simple appetizer i whipped up recently. Really reminds me of the Dodo Gizzard recipe. Same concept except I used snails instead of gizzard.
2 ripe Plantains
5 medium sized snails
2 large Scotch Bonnet Peppers( Ata Rodo)
3 cubes of Maggi
1 Medium sized Roma Tomato
1/2 cooking spoon vegetable oil
1 clove of garlic
1/4 bulb of onion
1/2 green bell pepper
1/2 red bell pepper
1.5 teaspoon of salt
2.5 cups of water
2 spoons of oil – for frying
1 medium sized lemon
*Wash the snail with lemon till all the slime comes off
*Place snail in pot and season with 1 teaspoon of salt, one large scotch bonnet pepper, 2 Maggi cubes, 1/8 bulb of Onion and boil with 2.5 cups of water for 20 minutes on medium heat.
*Peel and dice the ripe plantain and fry.
*chop the rest of the onions, the roma tomato, the scotch bonnet pepper, green bell pepper, red bell pepper and garlic
*Heat up the vegetable oil, fry the onion and garlic on medium heat for 3 minutes.
*Fry the chopped roma tomato, bell peppers and the scotch bonnet pepper
*season with the rest of the salt, maggi and stir in the snails.
*Add the fried plantain and stir in and leave to simmer on low heat for 5 minutes.
This lent season is probably not the best time to put up beef recipes on my blog but I promise I would have some lent inspired recipes up soon for you guys. Hope your valentines day/weekend was amazing. Which of my dishes did you make? Here is a simple recipe that you can service with white rice or any carbohydrate of your choice. Personally, I feel it goes better with rice. You can also substitute the beef with chicken, shrimp or any other protein. Enjoy!
10 Medium pieces of Beef
1 cup of coconut milk
2 Tablespoons of Curry
1 bulb of onion
5 Scotch Bonnet peppers (Moderate for your spice level)
2.5 Tablespoons of salt
4 cubes of Maggi cube
2 tablespoons of cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon of thyme
A handful of cherry tomatoes
A handful of raisins
A handful of roasted peanuts
*Wash beef, season with 1 Tablespoon of salt, 1 tablespoon of cayenne pepper, ½ bulb of onion, 2 cubes of Maggi and 2 scotch bonnet peppers.
*Bring to boil till beef is soft. If there is any stock left, keep aside as this would be used in the sauce.
* Pour in the coconut milk into a pot add the salt, Maggi cube, cayenne pepper, onion slices, scotch bonnet peppers, curry and thyme and bring to boil over medium heat.
*Pour in the beef stock and let it simmer for 2-3 minutes.
*Pour in the beef in the sauce and add the cherry tomatoes, peanuts and raisins. Stir and allow the sauce to simmer for another 2 minutes.
Serve with white rice.
This was a dish that I so badly wanted to put up on the blog but I decided to send it to Ynaija instead. It would still be on the internet either way. I enjoyed making it and had a serious craving for it. Plantain pottage is just one of those dishes that would do it for me. I think its the combination of sweet and savoury flavours who knows. Ah well! The recipe is available on the Ynaija website. Enjoy!