Ji Mmiri Oku (Yam and Dried Fish Pepper Soup Porridge)

Yam and Dried Fish Pepper Soup Porridge, Ji Mmiri oku

  Ji Mmiri Oku is a yam and dried fish pepper soup porridge native to the Igbos in Nigeria.
It is a traditional meal that is usually prepared for new moms, right after putting to bed(traditionally known as the Omugwo time)

It is often loaded with hot pepper, which is said to help the new mom heal faster and also helps to contract the uterus.

For this meal to be effective, new moms are always adviced to indulge more in the fish(protein) and hot soup, because the yams are only there to serve as a filling, so that you don’t get hungry in a short time.
Ji Mmiri Oku is not only for new moms. It can also be be enjoyed by all and is a popular meal during the new yam festival in August.

During this festival, many homes prepare this meal with a combination of goat meat, beef and chicken.
The urhobo people also have a similar meal known as Ukodo(recipe coming soon)

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Ok enough of the info, here’s the recipe, just as my mama does it.
++ see video recipe here++



– 1 small sized tuber of Yam
– Dried fish(usually dried catfish or Mangala)(as much as you like)
– 2 scotch bonnet peppers/ 1 tablespooful ground chili pepper(or as much as you can bear)
– 2 tablespoonful ground Crayfish (or 1 handful whole crayfish)
– 1 medium sized Onion(chopped)
– 2 tablespoonful Nigerian Pepper soup spice mix(click this link for homemade peppersoup spice mix)
– 3 pieces Scent leaves(nchawun or efirin) 

– 3 pieces Uziza leaves (hot leaves)(use half teaspoon ground uziza seeds as a substitute) 
– 3 tablespoonful Palm oil
– 2 large stock cube/ seasoning cube
– Salt to taste

* Uziza is optional but it gives extra nutrient and flavor to Ji Mmiri Oku.
*If you are not a big fan of yams, substitute the yams for unripe plantains or sweet potatoes

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Before cooking the pepper soup start by prepping the ingredients

– First clean the fish with hot water, to remove dirt and sand. Then take out bones and set the fish aside for later use.

If you are using mangala fish, you’ll have to parboil it a little with 1 cup of water, 1 stock cube and quarter teaspoon salt until tender because it is a tough fish.

– Slice the scent leaves and uziza leaves and also set aside

– Grind or pound the pepper and onion together. You can also grind the crayfish together if you are using whole crayfish.

– Also cut the yams, peel off the skin and wash thoroughly in clean water, then place in a bowl of clean water and set aside.

Tip: putting the yams in water prevents them from changing color.

Now to cook the Ji Mmiri Oku

1. If you are using mangala fish, strain the yams and add to the pot of parboiled mangala fish.

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But if you are using dried catfish, put the yams into a pot, add enough water to cover the yams add 1/2 teaspoon salt and set to a boil.

2. Then add the onions, blended peppers and cleaned dried catfish.
Also add the crayfish, the pepper soup spice mix , seasoning cube and palm oil.
Leave to cook until the yam slices are tender.

Yam and Dried Fish Pepper Soup Porridge, Ji Mmiri oku

3. Finally, add the sliced leaves, simmer for 2 minutes and put off the heat. Serve hot and enjoy.

 Tip: to serve this dish, you can choose to serve it in a single bowl, or alternatively separate the yam from the soup and serve in two bowls.

Ji Mmiri Oku (Yam and Dried Fish Pepper Soup Porridge), Ji Mmiri Oku , Pepper Soup Porridge

Thanks for your readership,comments and feedback.
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  1. Patience
    May 12, 2021 / 7:04 pm

    Pls ma is it necessary you used Palm oil

    • May 15, 2021 / 11:09 am

      Hi Patience, it is not necessary
      but you know that Ji mmiri oku is
      and ethnic recipe and the palm oil
      just gives it a more authentic taste

  2. Precious
    August 9, 2016 / 5:36 pm

    Thanks a lot. Pls when does the palm oil come in?

    • Nky Lily Lete
      November 22, 2016 / 7:54 pm

      Hi Precious, pls read step 2 in the recipe.

  3. Barbie
    March 6, 2016 / 3:43 pm

    It's a household meal in my husband's place, dats just how they eat their yam. I enjoy it.

    • Nky Lily Lete
      November 22, 2016 / 7:55 pm

      I'm glad you do Barbie 🙂

  4. kosisochi jane
    November 10, 2015 / 9:22 pm

    Awwww!! I hv found d no 1 food blog!! Welldone Nky!!

    • Nky Lily Lete
      December 30, 2015 / 11:30 am

      Thanks Jane 🙂

    September 30, 2015 / 2:41 pm

    please Nky I live in Mozambique where it is not easy to get yams but I used Irish potatoes in the place of yams because they are easily available that was after my first pregnancy. I hope that the use of Irish potatoes are okay

    • Nky Lily Lete
      October 1, 2015 / 11:09 am

      Yes dearie, Irish potato is okay. It might not taste as ''sweet'' as normal yam but it will definitely pass. If you can get the African sweet potatoes, you can also use that as a yam substitute 🙂

  6. chinwe
    September 23, 2015 / 5:41 pm

    can i b getting an e mail of any new recipe of urs? pls give me a link of how to get it? thanks a zillion times

    • Nky Lily Lete
      September 29, 2015 / 11:59 pm

      Of course dear, there is a subscribe button at the top right hand side of the page 🙂

  7. Beni O
    August 28, 2015 / 2:29 am

    What other type of fish can I use? (If I buy the fish myself and dry it myself).

    • Nky Lily Lete
      September 1, 2015 / 5:00 am

      You can make use of Conger eel and catfish if you intend to buy and dry it out yourself.

  8. Helen Raymond
    August 17, 2015 / 4:06 pm

    Nky I just tried dis n it was sooooo sweet. My hubby loved it. Tnk u soooo much.

    • Nky Lily Lete
      August 18, 2015 / 7:18 am

      I'm so glad you enjoyed it and thanks for your feedback sweetie 🙂

  9. priscaempire empire
    August 8, 2015 / 6:54 pm

    Ji mmiri oku I loved so much till my aunt came 4 omugwo and prepared one with too much nchanwu

    • Nky Lily Lete
      August 10, 2015 / 6:52 am

      chai, i can imagine :)The nchawun is only used as an extra, too much of it will definitely change the recipe.

  10. Anonymous
    August 6, 2015 / 11:06 pm

    Thanks for this recipe ,especially for providing the peppersoup spice mix recipe, you are the best,God bless you well well ooo

    • Nky Lily Lete
      August 6, 2015 / 11:38 pm

      You're welcome hun, God bless you too.

  11. miral pharmablog
    August 6, 2015 / 2:15 pm

    You didn't talk about uda. My mum uses uda, says it helps the healing process

    • Nky Lily Lete
      August 6, 2015 / 11:37 pm

      Your mom is right, Uda is in the peppersoup spice mix mentioned in the recipe.

  12. Modupe Youngharry
    August 6, 2015 / 12:49 pm

    Aww congrats sweet Nky, I just had a baby too, about a week ago , and will surely try this recipe, pls post more and kiss your baby for me.

    • Nky Lily Lete
      August 6, 2015 / 11:41 pm

      I sure will & congrats on your new baby and kisses to him/her too 🙂

  13. Whitney
    August 6, 2015 / 12:29 pm

    Good to see you back Nky and I saw on facebook that you had a baby, congrats and my love and blessings to the baby xoxoxo

    • Nky Lily Lete
      August 6, 2015 / 11:43 pm

      Thank you so much dearie , it's good to be back again 🙂

  14. puppy
    August 6, 2015 / 12:00 pm

    Momma's cooking pot… I love this already. Thank you, Nky

    • Nky Lily Lete
      August 6, 2015 / 11:46 pm

      You're welcome sweetie 🙂

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