EKURU AND FRIED STEW
3 Cups Black Eyed Beans or Brown
3 Cooking Spoons Palm Oil
1 Cup Dried Pepper (Ata Ijosi)
1 Red Bell Pepper (3, if you can’t source Dried Pepper (Ata Ijosi)
1 Scotch Bonnet
1.5 Medium Onion
2 Tablespoons Locust Beans (Iru)
1 Cup Fried Assorted Meats
1 Smoked Fish or Eja Shawa ( Optional)
1/2 Cup Smoked Prawns ( Optional)
2 Tablespoons Ground Crayfish
2 Knorr Chicken Cubes
Salt to taste
1. First soak and peel your Beans. Then blend with little water till semi-smooth, that’s not too smooth. Do not add too much water, your consistency should not be too thick nor too fluid, kind of in between. Then empty contents into a bowl.
2. With a hand mixer, incorporate air into your Bean Batter by mixing for 10-15 minutes. Mix till very fluffy and frothy. If you haven’t got a hand mixer, you can use a wooden spoon or ladle, mix for 30 minutes. Traditionally, Ekuru batter is pounded in a mortar till fluffy.
3. You’ll need to work your batter really well to achieve the signature Ekuru crumbly texture. If your batter isn’t fluffy enough, you’ll end up with a Moinmoin type texture or hard Ekuru, so, get mixing
4. Scoop the batter into Banana leaves (Moinmoin leaves), Ramekins or Foil ame seal. Excuse my mess here, the leaves I got were way too small
5. Steam till fully cooked, this should take roughly 30 minutes on medium heat.
**To steam, you can either use a steamer or line a pot with plastic(nylon) bags. Then lift the bag and add water to steam the Ekuru with. Arrange the wrapped Ekuru on the bags; making sure the water can’t get into the wrapped batter. Then, cover and steam. Do check from time to time and top up with more water when/where necessary.
And it’s done!
The Ekuru sauce :
Soak the Smoked Fish or Shawa in hot water to clean, then shred into smaller pieces. Also soak the Dried Pepper in hot water for at least an hour.
Remember to soak your pepper, don’t just use it as it is or it’ll blacken up your sauce.
Then blend the Dried Pepper, Scotch bonnet, 1 Onion and the Bell peppers roughly. Sieve out any moisture through a sieve and set aside….
Pour the Palm oil into a saucepan, place on low heat, when it’s hot, add 1/2 chopped Onion, sauté for 5 minutes, remember to do this on low heat so the Onions don’t burn, they just need to soften and caramelise a bit
Next, add the Locus Beans, sauté for a minute
Turn the heat up to medium, then add the roughly blended Pepper and Onion mix, also add the knorr cubes and salt to taste, fry for 5 minutes, stir occasionally
Now add the Fried Meats and continue to fry for another 10 minutes, remember to keep stirring and make sure the heat isn’t too high.