It used to be a ''best-kept-secret',' and was only known by the natives and a few Mamaput/Buka(road side cooks) in south-western Nigeria; no wonder people just can't get enough after a visit to the Buka.
Well, now we can all replicate these stew in our homes. So here's the Ofada stew (Ayamase) recipe and below are frequently asked questions about this native stew. ... hope you enjoy.
*Video recipe here
Ingredients for Ofada stew (Ayamase)
*7 Large Green bell peppers
*4 Green scotch bonnet peppers(atarodo)(It's okay if it has some red spots)
*500 grams Assorted meat (beef,kpomo, cow foot,tripe(shaki)... or as desired)
*Assorted dry Fish (stock fish or dried fish)(optional)
*1/4 cup Crayfish (about a handful)
*1 wrap OR 1 tablespoonful Iru/dawadawa OR ogiri
*3 large Onions
*2 Stock cube/seasoning cube
*Salt to taste
*600ml Palm oil
*4 Hard Boiled eggs(without shell)
Tip: in the absence of stockfish(dried codfish), you can make use of fresh cod fish.
* Grind the iru and the crayfish together and set aside
* If you're using stock fish and dried fish, wash and cook until tender, and set aside
* Wash and Cut the meat into bite sizes; season with onions, one stock cube and salt to taste. You can season the meat as you like :)
Cook until tender. It is always better to cook the tougher meat first, which in my case is the cow foot and the tripe(shaki). Then after 20 minutes ,add the beef and kpomo(cow skin).
When the meat is done cooking, you can grill or fry or simply set aside for later use.
Tip: the natives fry the meat in palm oil or grill it on homemade grill.
|Assorted meat&fish(I used fresh cod fish)|
Pour the blended mixture into a dry pot and heat up to dry out excess liquid from the peppers.
TIP: Another method is to pour the pepper mixture through a sieve(with a tight mesh), press down with a cooking spoon to make sure that you get out, as much liquid as possible, then set aside until needed.
Cover the pot and bleach the palm oil on medium heat until the onions are completely burnt black and the palm oil changes from red to light brown in color.
If you didn't add onions, the color will be light yellow(just like the color of vegetable oil).
Put off the heat, and let the oil cool completely without opening it. If you don't cover it, THE OIL WILL SMOKE A LOT AND WILL SMELL ALL OVER THE HOUSE, and might start off the smoke alarm(if you have one).
Cook for about 20 minutes and add the assorted meat and fish, ground iru,crayfish,the second stock cube and salt to taste. Mix thoroughly and simmer for 10 minutes.
Then add the peeled hard boiled eggs.
And your Ofada stew (Ayamase) is ready. Serve with Ofada rice(or any rice of choice), boiled yams, potatoes or plantains.
Frequently asked Questions
* Why is it called Ofada sauce?
This tasty sauce got it's name from Ofada Rice, which is a local Nigerian Rice that is served with it. It is also known as ''Designer's Stew'' and is simply delicious.
* Why is the color of the stew different in some places?
The color of the stew (either greenish brown or reddish brown) and consistency of the stew might differ from place to place, due to the method of cooking.The longer you cook the ayamase, the darker it becomes.
* Do I need to bleach the palm oil before frying the stew?
Yes you have to. Bleaching the palm oil is one of the steps that gives Ofada stew (Ayamase) it's distinct taste and aroma.
*I'm feeding a large group and the stew looks like it won't go round, Can I add tomatoes to give the stew bulk?
Well, the ORIGINAL recipe doesn't call for tomatoes, but if you don't have more green bell peppers ;you can add a FEW tomatoes to increase the quantity of the stew.
Some of the restaurants I know, usually add a little blended tomatoes to the peppers they use for their Ofada stew (Ayamase), to help increase the quantity of the stew, That is why some ofada stews come out ''reddish brown''(mamaput has to make some money naa?..Lol )
If you want to do that, make sure that the tomatoes does not ''overpower'' the green bell peppers. So that you don't end up with Obe ata dindin.
So for the recipe provided above, you can add 3 fresh tomatoes.
* Why do you use only green scotch bonnet peppers for your Ayamase. Can I use red peppers or dried peppers?
Yes you can.The original recipe calls for all green, but hey! it won't hurt to mix it up a bit,I assure you that you won't notice the difference at all.
* How do I keep my green scotch bonnet peppers from going red before I'm ready to cook the stew?
If I get them all green, I always freeze mine and that stops it from turning red or orange.
* How do I bleach the palm oil without setting of the smoke alarm?
Lol.. all you need to do is cover the pot and heat up the oil on low-medium heat for about 20 to 35 minutes. Then turn off the heat and let it cool completely.Don't open the lid/cover until the oil
* Do I need to serve it with Ofada Rice?
No dear, you can serve with any rice of choice. It
also goes well with plantains, yams and potatoes.