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  • Writer's pictureAngela, Digital Chef, Africa Analyst

Cajun Rice - Jollof Rice

Recipe Name : Jollof rice

Subtitle : Cultural seasoned rice

Culture : West Africa

Taste : Sweet, Smokey

Preparation time : 1 hour 5 min

Recipe Story :

A dish that is common among West Africans it has may iterations as it does devotees. It is served in Nigeria, Cameroon, Ghana, and Liberia just to name a few countries where it can be found. As to who invented it one cannot say for certain, as some people are of the opinion that Senegambia region had some influence on the dish. Similarities to its closest culinary relative, the Senegalese national dish thiebou djeun are apparent. Still Nigerians are fiercely proud of jollof, and the fiery tanginess that greets your palate. It’s a dish commonly served at ceremonies and celebrations.

Ingredients :

· four cups of cooked rice

· three or four medium red bell pepper (tatashe)

· ½ can of plum tomatoes or two medium size tomatoes

· 11/2 Scotch bonnet (Atarodo)

· Two cups of beef or chicken stock

· 120 grams of tomato paste

· Two onions

· 100 ml / six table spoons of cooking oil

· Two table spoons of butter

· One table spoon of minced Ginger

· ½ tea spoon of curry powder and thyme

· ½ tea spoon of any seasoning of your choice

· Three Knorr chicken cubes

· Two tea spoons of white pepper

· Three bay leaves

· One medium size tomato for garnishing

· Salt to taste

Directions :

  1. Blend the red bell peppers, tomatoes, scotch bonnet, and one onion to a smooth paste and set aside.

  2. Add the cooking oil into a large pot, place on the hob on medium heat, add half a slice of onions and let it fry till fragrant.

  3. Add the blended pepper, tomato paste, knorr cubes, curry powder, one tea spoon of white pepper, bay leaves, cover and let it fry till oil begins to float to the top.

  4. While that is frying, wash your rice thoroughly to get rid of starch and set aside. If you’re choosing to par boil your rice, par boil for five to eight minutes with little water on low heat. The rise should still be very firm and not soft, wash with warm water and set aside.

  5. When oil floats to the top add the chicken stock, cover and let it fry for a further eight to ten minutes.

  6. Add the washed rice

  7. Add the stew so you can control the amount of stew that goes in to avoid over adding. Combine thoroughly, ensure the stew is only about a cm over the rice when combined, its better to start with a little liquid and add as you go. When that’s fully combined add the butter, the minced ginger, the remaining tea spoon of white pepper and combine.

  8. Cover and let it cook until the rice softens. Do stir every now and then with a wooden spoon. This prevents clumps and doesn’t break the rice up.

  9. Add a little bit of stock or water as you go, be careful not to add too much. Jollof rice needs steam to cook and not water. Don’t be alarmed if the rice begins to burn, it must definitely burn a little. This is what gives its much loved Smokey flavor. When the rice is soft enough, add the onion rings and sliced tomatoes.

  10. Note that onions and tomatoes should be added just a couple of minutes before the final completion, combine thoroughly.

  11. Switch of the heat, and leave to steam with residual heat for another minute or two, and your jollof rice is ready.

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