AMALA AND GBEGIRI: SOLID DRIED YAM PUREE SERVED WITH WEST AFRICAN BROWN BEANS SOUP
As potatoes are to the French, so are yams to Nigerians.
Yams are the designated King of crops. Practically eaten all year round, these root vegetables are celebrated annually in a day or week long festival to herald the arrival of newly harvested yams during the rainy season in August. Yams can be enjoyed in a variety of ways - yam chunks, steamed, roasted or fried; solid yam puree either from fresh boiled yams or from flour made from dried yams.
The solid yam puree made from dried yams flour are a speciality of the Ibadan or Oyo people in South West Nigeria. The flour called Elubo, when mixed thoroughly with hot water, forms a solid dough called Amala which is grey or black in colour in contrast to to the white solid puree from pounded freshly boiled yams.
Amala is usually eaten with a mélange of three classic soups - Obe ata, tomato stew made from a blend of tomatoes, peppers and onions cooked in unrefined palm oil, Ewedu, jute leaves soup flavoured with Iru, and Gbegiri, beans soup also cooked in unrefined palm oil - all of which when all served together, is called Abula.
Typically also, Amala can be eaten with either of jute leaves soup or beans soup served with tomato stew.
Here, we will go the nine yards for you to enjoy the Amala and Abula. We also totally recommend simply enjoying Amala with Gbegiri, beans soup served with your tomato stew base. Whatever your diet preference is, you can be sure to enjoy this meal.
WHAT YOU NEED (Serves 4)
- Dried Yam flour, 120g
- Water, 1 litre
GBEGIRI, BEANS SOUP
- Beans flour, 50g
- Iru, locust beans,10 to 20g
- Palm oil or any vegetable oil of your choice
- Tomato stew
OBE ATA,TOMATO STEW
- Blend of tomatoes, red bell peppers, Onions (500ml)
EWEDU, JUTE LEAVES SOUP
- Ewedu, 50 to 80g