If you are a true Nigerian, the word ‘Stew’ will not be strange to you. In Nigeria, fried blended tomatoes is generally called stew, and there’s almost no day ‘stew’ is not eaten in most Nigerian homes. There’s beef stew, turkey stew, chicken stew and fish stew, depending on the protein added to the blended tomatoes. As rich as tomato is, we somehow only think about stew when we see it. Right? But there are other ways to enjoy this vegetable, and all you will need is your cooking skills matched with your creative cap. Here, we present four simple tomato-based recipes you will enjoy!
There’s nothing as great as the Nigerian Jollof rice! This is a great way to enjoy the yummy goodness of tomatoes. All you need is a few cups of rice, chopped vegetables, seasonings for taste, chicken or beef stock, and your tomatoes blended into a paste. Preparation and cooking time in all will take about 45 minutes, and you have a delicious pot of steaming hot Jollof rice. Don’t forget to add slices of tomatoes on top of the rice as decoration. But we all know where they end up! (Insert photo of Jollof rice with slices of tomatoes on it)
Although this is a food all the way from Italy, Nigerians have put their own spin to it and for good reasons too (Italian Bolognese sauce is hard to find). Blend your tomatoes into a pulp and then fry it in a hot vegetable oil. Add your seasonings, chicken or beef stock and finally your spaghetti, and you’ll have your spaghetti Bolognese in 5 minutes!
This is a vegetable soup rich in nutrients and very popular with the Yoruba people in Western Nigeria. Efo Shoko or Efo Tete is usually the vegetable used for this meal. But if you are where you cannot get them, frozen spinach will do the magic too. Blend your tomatoes into a puree. Fry in hot red oil and then add your seasoning to taste. Add a little beef stock and allow to cook for a few minutes. Add your Efo Shoko or Efo Tete at this point and allow to simmer for a few seconds. Take off the heat so the vegetable does not overcook for nutrient retention.
Another way to enjoy tomatoes is infusing it into your sandwich. Spread both slices of bread with butter or mayonnaise or any homemade sandwich sauce you have and then place slices of tomatoes in between. Slam the slices together and take a yummy healthy bite!
Tomatoes, when regularly included in your diet, can protect you against cancer and diabetes and help you maintain a healthy blood pressure and blood sugar level. So, tomatoes don’t always have to mean stew. These recipes are easy to prepare, and they give you the delicious and healthy goodness of Tomatoes. Don’t forget to wash them really well to wash out any pesticide residue!