How to Make Ogbono & Egusi Soup

Egusi (melon seed) soup is one of the most popular soups prepared by most tribes in Nigeria. A typical Nigerian event isn’t complete without Egusi soup and pounded yam on the menu. Ogbono soup is also a popular Nigerian soup enjoyed by various tribes in Nigeria.

This not-so-famous soup is the birth child of both famous soups. Although not as popular as its famous parents, it’s just as hearty and delicious. You can enjoy this soup with pounded yam, fufu, eba, or any swallow of your choice.

To make Ogbono & Egusi soup, you will need:

  • 1 kg Beef
  • 500 g dried fish
  • 1 cup Egusi (melon seeds)
  • 1/2 cup Ogbono (wild mango seeds)
  • 1/2 cup dried crayfish
  • 2 small onions
  • 1 cup Palm oil
  • 4-6 Dried Cameroon peppers
  • 2-3 handfuls washed bitter leaf
  • 3 Seasoning cubes
  • Salt to taste

Procedure

  1. Grind the egusi together with the ogbono, crayfish, and pepper. Wash the fish with hot water and salt to get rid of any dirt. Cut one of the onions into four and chop the other one.
  1. Put the meat in a pot; add the chopped onion, 2 seasoning cubes, and some salt. Do not add any water at this stage. Mix everything and cook over low-medium heat for 15 mins. After 15 mins, add your fish and one liter of water; cook till the meat is done.
  1. While the meat is cooking, get a dry pan, add your oil and the quartered onion. Cover and leave till the onion starts to caramelize. Take out the onion and turn off the heat (frying the onion adds flavor to the oil). Note: You can blend the caramelized onions and add it to the soup or use it for something else. 
  1. Add the ground egusi and ogbono mixture to the oil, using a spoon to dissolve any lumps. Set aside.
  1. Once the meat and fish are cooked, add the egusi and ogbono mixture to the pot and mix properly. The soup will be very thick at this point. You can add water gradually till you achieve your desired consistency. Add the washed bitter leaf and one seasoning cube, and cook for 5-10 minutes. Turn off the heat.

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