10 Best Igbo Foods
The Igbo tribe is one of the three major ethnic groups in Nigeria. The people are predominantly found in the eastern part of the country. They have a wide range of preserved culture, which they never fail to showcase.
Due to the fact that their culture is highly preserved, the Igbos are always incorporating their culture into their lifestyle. This is visible in all parts of their lives, such as: dressing, food, mode of greeting, music and so on. The purpose of this article is to examine the best ten traditional foods of the Igbo tribe.
10 Best Igbo Foods
Igbo meals are usually gotten from natural sources and very rich in nutrients and vitamins. Their meals are usually non refined unlike most foreign foods, this is why they are regarded as healthy foods and are recommended for consumption by medical personnel. The Igbos have a lot of traditional foods, listed below are ten of them:
1. Ofe Onugbu
Also known as bitter leaf soup, ofe onugbu is a highly nutritious soup popular among the Igbos. The soup is similar to the Ndole soup of Cameroon. Ofe onugbu is usually prepared from bitter leaf and cocoyam paste. Before preparing the soup, ensure that the bitter leaves are squeezed and washed thoroughly to get rid of the bitter taste.
2. Ofe Oha
Ofe oha or oha soup is a popular Igbo delicacy. It is also known as uha or ora soup. The soup is prepared from a leguminous plant scientifically known as Pterocarpus mildbraedii. Traditionally, the leaves are called oha leaves, but it is commonly known as African rosewood plant. The legume is highly medicinal and nutritious. Oha soup is usually prepared with oha leaves, uziza, achi, cocoyam, palm oil including meat and assorted fishes. The soup is usually consumed with Akpu or pounded yam.
Abacha is basically made from cassava, although it requires other ingredients. The more the ingredients in an abacha dish, the more delicious it is. It is one of the Igbo dishes that can be taken as snack or real food. The cassava is usually boiled and sliced when it is done. The sliced cassava is then soaked in cold water overnight. It is then washed thoroughly and dried under the sun. The dried cassava is then cooked with other ingredients like ukpaka, uhu seeds, pieces of fish and any other preferred ingredient.
Apart from being consumed in most Igbo homes, nkwobi is also served in different occasions and family gathering due to its rich and delicious taste. It is made from cow feet which is mixed with spicy palm oil paste. Nkwobi is very similar to isi ewu. The only difference is that isi ewu is made with goat head instead of cow foot. Some people prepare their nkwobi with some meat other than cow foot. Nkwobi can be taken as snack or eaten as food with boiled yam.
5. Ofe Nsala
Ofe nsala is another popular Igbo soup. It is also known as white soup. It is usually made with small pieces of yam, utazi leaves and catfish. The catfish is the source of the soup’s unique taste. Ofe nsala is similar to afia, a common soup among the Efik. The soup is usually consumed with yam or eba.
6. Fio Fio
Fio fio is a spicy porridge dish made from pigeon peas. Pigeon pea is a leguminous plant found mostly in Africa, Asia and some parts of south America. It is also known as Agbugbu. Pigeon pea has a sweet natural taste which is very delicious when cooked The meal might take a long time to cook, but the wait is surely worth it. Some people soak their pigeon peas overnight if there is no pressure pot. It can be eaten with boiled yam, ugba, utazi or anala.
Achichia, also known as Echichia is one of the traditional meal of the Igbo people. It is a delicious meal that you will never get enough of. It is basically made from dried cocoyam flakes. The cocoyam would have been precooked and sundried before it is mixed with beans, black beans and leafy vegetables. Achicha is best enjoyed with okazi.
8. Afang Soup
Talking about a delicious and nutrient packed Igbo soup, then it should be afang soup. It is prepared with waterleaf and okazi leaves. Due to the fact that okazi leaves is strong and hard to chew, it is usually pounded before it is added to the soup. Afang soup is best served with pounded yam, although some people take it with any swallow of their choice. Although, afang is the exclusive food of the Anangs and Ibibios, the Igbo people have come to accept this incredible soup.
Ukwa might be an expensive dish to prepare, but it is very delicious. Its case is like that of the popular saying, which states that “na money kill better soup”. It is made from the African beadfruit and recognized everywhere for its unique natural taste. The meal can be prepared in different ways. It can be cooked plainly without adding any ingredients. It can also be roasted and eaten with coconut or palm kernel or prepared as porridge.
10. Isi Ewu
Also known as spiced goat head, isi ewu is another popular Igbo dish. It is also a common menu served in most restaurants due to its unique and delicious taste. The goat head is usually cooked until it becomes tender before it is mashed with a mortar. Other ingredients and spices are then added to taste. The soup is usually served with utazi leaves.