PENNE PASTA IN OGBONO SAUCE
There's no question about how delicious Ogbono soup is paired with solid starchy purée - Garri (Eba), Pounded yam, fufu... you name it! However, since Ogbono is quite peculiar given its mucilaginous feature, it has stayed firmly within the "soup" box until now.
Until now because surprise... Ogbono can also be enjoyed as a deep fried sauce paired with pasta (penne pasta most preferred) or rice. The key is to get the Ogbono sticky as in cheese instead of slimy or "drawy" as required when cooked as soup.
WHAT YOU NEED (Serves 2)
- Ogbono powder, 1 or 2 table spoons
- Minced meat, seasoned (portion size for two)
- Penne pasta, cooked à la dente (portion size for 2)
- Vegetable oil, 30g - olive oil, sunflower seed oil, avocado oil etc.
- Blend of two tomatoes, 1 bell pepper, and 1 small bulb of onion
- One whole onion, diced
- Garlic, one or two cloves - diced (optonal)
- Precooked diced vegetables of your choice - Bell peppers, runner beans, broccoli etc
- Leafy greens or herbs: either of Ugu leaves, scent leaves or spinach (optional)
- Crayfish, 1 table spoon (optional)
- Black Pepper, salt, curry, and other seasoning to taste
- Start off with frying the diced onions and garlic in the vegetable oil of your choice till slightly brown. Next in, the tomato/peppers blend. Add salt, black pepper, crayfish and other seasoning as preferred. Let your sauce fry/cook till the sauce looks thick with little to no water content. Be careful not to add water as we will rely on water content from the tomato blend as well as vegetables.
- Add the seasoned minced meat and let cook in the fried tomato sauce for about 10 mins. Make sure to toss the meat around for even cooking.If your diced vegetables are not precooked, you can add them in here to cook with the meat.
- Check your deep fried meat sauce for taste. Once satisfied with the taste, add one or two table spoons of Ogbono powder to your minced meat sauce. Toss and let cook for about 10 mins.
- If your vegetables are precooked, add your diced vegetables now along with choose leafy greens. If you cooked your vegetables in the sauce, also go ahead to add your leafy greens - any of Ugu, scent leaves or spinach. If using greens with high water content like spinach, take care to use just enough to keep the sauce as water free as possible.
- Let your sauce cook for about 5 mins or till sauce is deep fried again. Your sauce should be sticky and not slimy. Remember the only rule here is no water - if you need the sauce to be a little loosened up, add more tomato/pepper blend.
- Pour in your already cooked penne pasta into the Ogbono minced meat sauce. Stir for even distribution of your veggies and meat in your pasta dish.
- Serve hot and enjoy.