Known simply as ‘Beans’, I love this best made with honey beans although black-eyed beans work perfectly well. An English friend once declared Nigerian beans one of the world’s greatest culinary inventions!
Leave out the crayfish for a vegan version.
- 500g black-eye beans or honey beans (rinsed and soaked for at least 6 hours or overnight)
- 300g tomatoes
- 1.5L water (or chicken stock)
- 2 onions, about 200g (peeled, and quartered)
- 2 red bell peppers (seeded and quartered)
- 1 Scotch Bonnet chilli, about 8g (optional)
- 1 tablespoon ground crayfish (optional)
- 1 teaspoon tomato puree
- *4 tablespoons palm oil
- Rinse the soaked beans in fresh cold water and place in a large saucepan with the stock or water.
- Liquidise the tomatoes, onions, bell peppers; and chilli and crayfish (if using) until just blended.
- Add to the saucepan and bring to boil for about 5 minutes. Turn down the heat and simmer for 45 minutes to an hour until it reaches the desired consistency.
- Add the palm oil, salt to taste and cook for a further 5 minutes.
- Serve hot with fried plantains and/or boiled or fried yam.
*The oil may be omitted for a low-calorie version, without affecting the flavour.
- Blend in 20g of peeled ginger with the tomatoes
- Mix in a 250ml can of sweetcorn (drained) once the beans are cooked. The texture of the sweetcorn provides a lovely contrast to the soft beans. This is called ‘adalu’.
- Pieces of peeled washed yam may be added to the pot 20 minutes before the end of the cooking time.
- Add some boiled rice about five minutes before the end of the cooking time.