Nigerian Pepper Soup
One of the best African comfort foods as any Nigerian will tell you is African pepper soup – a savory and spicy soup made using a blend of aromatic spices and meat. You can use pretty much any kind of meat you prefer – from chicken and lamb to beef or fish. We used goat meat for this delicious meal.
For extra heartiness, you can pair it with a side of rice, bread or boiled yams. Enjoy!
Nigerian Pepper Soup
- 2 tsp uziza leaves
- 1 lb goat meat cut into pieces
- 2 tsp crayfish
- 1 tbsp pepper soup spice
- 1 tsp red chili flakes
- 1 tsp ginger powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 small onion chopped
- 1 scotch bonnet peppers de-seeded and minced
- 1 seasoning cube
- 4 cups water
- Rinse the meat pieces thoroughly and place in a pot along with the seasoning, half the onion, scotch bonnet peppers, salt and water. Bring to a boil, the turn the heat down and cook for 30 minutes, stirring every so often.
- Then add the pepper soup spice, the red chili flakes, ginger, crayfish, the rest of the onion and let everything simmer for another 10 minutes.
- Finally, stir in the uziza leaves and let them simmer for 5 more minutes until wilted.
- Serve hot with a side of pounded yam, rice or fresh bread. Enjoy!
- Packaged pepper soup seasoning mix/spice, usually imported from Nigeria, may be found in African grocery stores. The traditional spices used in pepper soup are little known outside of Africa.
- Expatriate Nigerians make a substitute pepper soup seasoning mix from allspice, anise pepper, anise seeds, cloves, coriander seeds, cumin seeds, dried ginger, fennel seeds, and tamarind pulp
- You can substitute the powdered ginger powder for fresh ginger if you prefer.
- The amount of peppers you add to the pepper soup depends on your heat tolerance, so feel free to increase or reduce the number of peppers you use.
- You can substitute uziza leaves or bitter leaves with parsley, or mint; be sure to wash and drain bitter leaves if you use them.
- Cutting the goat meat into cutlets helps it cook faster, and makes it easier to eat. If you prefer bigger chunks of meat in your pepper soup, you can cut them into larger pieces, but it might need to cook for longer.
- To avoid chunks of onions in your pepper soup, it’s a good idea to either mince the onion or grate the onion on the smaller hole on the grater.