nsala soup

The holiday was very long and interesting with this native soup, indigenous to the Igbos of Southeastern Nigeria.  I call this a fun recipe because there are lots of accompaniments: meats and fishes I mean, swimming in the dish which I find enjoyable. Unlike most native soup recipes, that requires processes, this soup does not that much but just a little effort and trust me it is worth it. Serve it with pounded yam, mmmm… the combination can make your hubby profess his love for you all over again and the wife looking ever fresh before her king. Every African woman ought to learn it and everyman ought to appreciate a woman who knows it. I broke it down into four steps for easy comprehension.


Meat (it could be any kind of meat)

1 habanero pepper

1 1/2 cups of crayfish

2 onions

2 cubes size ogili okpehi

Palm oil (optional)

Dried fish

4 knorr cubes

Uziza leaves or the uziza seeds

6 utazi leaves

Pounded yam or corn flour for thickening




Properly wash the meat and put in a pot.

Season with onions, 2 knorr cubes and salt.

Add enough water up to the level of the meat but not covering the pot.

Cover the pot and let it boil until the meat is tender.



Blend the pepper, onions, crayfish, and ogili okpehi and set aside.


Properly wash the dried fish.


Get about one slice of yam, peel it and cook it with the boiling meat. Keep an eye on it, once it’s tender get it out and pound it until it’s stretchy. This will be used as a thickener for the soup or alternatively use the corn starch.

Once the meat is cooked, pour in the blended mixture.

Add the palm oil or leave it out to make an oil free recipe.

Add the dried fish.

Now if you are using pounded yam as thickener, you add it at this point to boil together with the fish. But if you are using corn starch as the thickener, just add the fish and let it boil until the fish is tender. The corn starch will be added after the fish is well cooked.

Add the uziza leaves or the grounded seeds.

Add knorr cubes and stir.

Add salt to taste.

Lastly add the utazi leaves, let it boil for 1 minute, stir and turn off the heat.

Enjoy with pounded yam, semolina or as desired!



Author: Chisom

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