This dish is made with the seeds of the African BreadFruit. Very nutritious and super filling.
I experienced Ukwa for the first time during my teenage years in eastern Nigeria. Thanks to my sister’s MIL, who gifted me with a large bag of dried Ukwa, this dish graced our table this weekend.
Ukwa is reminiscent of beans or lentils. When cooked, it has a texture similar to black eyed beans, the taste is a cross between lentils and beans, and is really great at absorbing flavors while cooking.
This dish took a really long time to cook, but the result was worth it!
- 2 cups of dried ukwa seeds (triple washed as seeds sometimes come with some sand and debris)
- 2 tbsp of crayfish
- 2 stock cubes
- 1 large onion (sliced thinly)
- 1 tbsp cameroon pepper (optional)
- ¼ palmoil
- 4 large pieces of smoked catfish (washed and deboned)
- 20 cups of water
- Pour the washed Ukwa seeds into a pot/pressure cooker.
- Add 10 cups of water.
- Cook for about 90 minutes or until the water dries up.
- Check the texture of the seeds for softness. They should be soft enough to easily mash between two finger tips.
- If the seeds are not as soft, pour the remaining 10 cups of water and cook for 60 minutes.
- Check for softness.
- When the seeds become soft, pour the entire contents of the pot into a bowl.
- Pour the onions and palmoil into the pot and cook on high heat for about 5 minutes or until the onions soften.
- Add pepper, stock cubes, crayfish, and smoked fish into the pot.
- While stirring, cook for 5 more mins.
- Pour about 2 cups of the Ukwa broth into the pot.
- Sieve out the Ukwa seeds from the broth, but ensure that you save the broth.
- Pour in the ukwa seeds into the pot add more broth as necessary (less broth = a thicker porridge)
- Tase, and add salt as needed.
- Stir and simmer for about 10 mins on low heat.
- Turn of heat and leave to cool.
Garnish with freshly sliced spring onions…
I hope you enjoy it as much as we did.
Oya Come Chop! 🙂