My Kitchen: How to make UKWA

25 February, 2017

This week’s recipe is Ukwa (African Breadfruit)

Ukwa also known as African Bread fruit, is a very popular food here in the eastern part of Nigeria. There are generally two reciepes for making Ukwa.

Ukwa could be cooked with potash and eaten like that or it could also be separated and mashed with some ingredients and thereafter served with the extract (soup).

Below are the ingredients for preparing Ukwa (African Breadfruit) for 4 people

The ingredients

4 cups of Ukwa
a spoon full of Potash (akanwu)
Fresh pepper (about 5)
Ogiri (optional)
Seasoning (to taste)
Salt to taste
Red oil (5 to 10 cl)
2 cups of maize (optional)

How To Prepare Ukwa
Cook the corn till it is very soft for consumption
Wash the ukwa and pick the stones out of it (if any). It is important to wash severally in a bowl with lots of clean water.

Cook to boiling point before adding the potash. The better way is to dissolve the potash in water to filter out the residue, and then add the filtrate. If you put it straight into the pot, it may not dissolve properly

It is needful to note that Ukwa does not ever get soft (done) without the use of the catalyst (potash). You can cook it for hours and it’ll still be hard without potash. There is another ingredient that serves the same purpose as potash, it is in the form of ash gotten from the burning of palm fronds, it is locally called ngu but we Igbos prefer Akanwu (potash)

If you want to make Ukwa with ngu apply the same method as though you are using potash, dissolve in a cup of water allow for a minute or two then use the filtrate.

Cook till the ukwa is soft for consumption and you can serve. This is one of the two ways to eat African breadfruit in Nigerian, some people like to add a pinch of salt while some leave it like that.

The second recipe continues where the one above stopped.

Once the Ukwa Seeds are soft for consumption, separate the seeds from the water. Pound the pepper with mortar and pestle. Though more stressful, pounding your ingredients in a mortar gives it a better taste than using a blender.

Add about 5cl of red oil, seasoning to taste, one ball of ogiri and stir. Please use a wooden spoon for this process. Add the soft corn, stir then add the soft ukwa seed then turn very well with the wooden spoon and you that’s it.

Serve with something cold to drink

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