How to Make Nigerian Banga Soup

Banga soup is an easy and delicious Nigerian soup made with palm fruit (Banga). Different cultures in Nigeria have their own variations of this soup; this recipe is for Niger-Delta style Banga soup, which is traditionally served with starch. 

Ingredients

1 kg Palm fruits (Banga)

500 g meat (assorted meat or chicken)

1 large-sized fresh catfish

Prawns (optional)

1-2 cups periwinkles

1 medium onion

1/2 cup crayfish

6-8 scotch bonnet chillies

1 tbsp ataiko

1 tsp irugege

1 obonrubebe stick

1 handful dried Beletientien leaves

1/2 handful dried and crushed bitter leaf

4 Seasoning cubes

Salt

Procedure

If you are using fresh catfish, you have to first get rid of the sliminess. Do this by washing the fish in warm water and lime juice. Wash and boil the Banga seeds, then extract the juice. Grind the crayfish together with the ataiko and irugege seeds. Blend the pepper and chop the onions.

In a pot, add the meat, chopped onions, two seasoning cubes, and some salt. Cook on low heat for 10 – 15 mins without adding water. But be sure to keep an eye on the water level; add some water if it gets too low. Cook till the meat is almost done and the water is almost dried up.

Pour the palm fruit extract into another pot and boil for about 20 – 25 mins or until it starts to thicken. Add your ground spice mix (crayfish, irugege, and ataiko) and the obonrubebe stick; cook for a few more minutes.

When the soup has thickened considerably, add your precooked meat, fresh fish, blended chillies, 2 seasoning cubes, and some salt. Cook till the fish is done, your meat should also be done by now.

Add your Beletientien leaves and bitter leaf, taste for seasoning and adjust to suit your taste; simmer for 2-3 minutes. Turn off the heat and serve with your favorite swallow.

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