Ekpang Nkukwo also known as ekwang is a traditional Nigerian dish, eaten by the Efik and Ibibio tribes of Nigeria. It is also widely enjoyed by the Bakweri tribe in Cameroon.
Ekpang- nkukwo is a very rich and nutritious dish commonly used for fattening of pregnant women, nursing mothers and also for fattening of little babies.
There are different ways we prepare ekpang- nkukwo such as:
It is made of freshly grated cocoyam, wrapped in leafy greens and slowly simmered with various types of fresh or smoked meat, fish, crayfish, red oil and other spices depending on the cooks preference until cooked to perfection.
Tips To Note
- There are many variety of cocoyam, for this recipe. The red cocoyam is best, however, you can use the white ones with good results, but you have to dry it out. Buy it a couple of days before use and let it dry out before you clean and use.
- Although it is traditionally made with cocoyam leaves or sweet bitter leaves. You can use any fresh leafy greens available such as collard greens, spinach, or even romaine lettuce, or a combination. What you use depends on what is available. Pick the ones without holes or tears.
- If you have a grater and you are up for it, then by all means use it. But the majority of people who does not have time to grate the cocoyam, shortens the process by using food processor to grate the cocoyam.
- Keep the stirring to a minimum to prevent the ekpang from becoming watery.
Ingredients Needed For The Preparation of Ekpang-Nkukwo
- 6 medium size of cocoyam tubers
- 1/2 tuber of water yam
- 3 cups of shelled perewinkles( mfi)
- 1/2 cup of grinded crayfish
- 1/2 cup of dry shrimps (optional)
- A handful of ugwu leaves tender potato leaves, fresh cocoyam leaves, spinach, scent leaves or any of the above
- 4 Fresh or dry pepper
- Cow hides(ganda,ikpa,kpomo) cut into tiny pieces
- Dry, ice, smoke fish or beef
- 1 ball onion
- 2 cups of palm oil
- 4 cups of water
- 1 Tablespoon bouillon granules / Maggie
- Salt to taste
RELATED POST: Nkpa Efere Soup | Ingredients Needed For | Nkpa Efere Soup | Method Of Preparation Of Nkpa Efere Soup
- Wash and season the beef, iced fish and the cow hide,cook till soft. If you are using smoked or dry fish,dress it and keep aside for later use.
- Chop the shelled periwinkles at the tail,wash it severally in salt water and keep aside.
- Blend crayfish and pepper and keep aside.
- Peel ,wash and grate the cocoyam and water yam into an open bowl,add 2 seasoning cubes with a little salt and 1 spoon of palm oil to it. Mix it properly with your finger tips and keep aside
- (Note: some cocoyams are so itchy, becareful not to allow it pass your ankle or you can use a removable gloves to prevent the itches
- Rub a generous amount of palm oil on the inside of the pot you will use to cook the Ekpang.
- If you are going to use of these leaves:tender cocoyam leaves, ugwu leaves spinach (Alehu),sweet potato leaves,uziza leaves. wash and segment them by pulling them away from the stalks and keep aside
- Cut the scent leaves or curry leaves and keep aside. this is going to serve as the vegetable spice.
Steps on How To Prepare Ekpang-Nkukwo
- With a large cooking pot, grease the inside of the pot with palm oil. Use the washed periwinkles and line them in the pot. The periwinkles will prevent the porridge from getting burnt at the bottom of the pot. Meanwhile, heat up 4 cups of water you will need it after wrapping the cocoyam.
- Get the mixed cocoyam. Using your hand, scoop it on one side of the bare leaves you have segmented and wrap it cylindrical till the edges of the cocoyam are sticking out on both ends. While doing this, get a bowl of water close to deepen your finger tips. Do this until the whole grated cocoyam is fished from the tray.
- Drop the pot on a low heat to boil for about 10minutes.
- Bring the hot water you have boiled and pour it to the pot containing the wrapped cocoyam.
- When it starts to boil, add the remaining seasoning cubes, pepper, onions, crayfish, shrimps, the already cooked beef, dressed dry fish and the cow hide. Add salt to taste don’t stir it yet. Close the pot and allow it to boil for about 15minutes.
- When the folded cocoyam starts getting swollen, pour the remaining palm oil to it and stir it gently till all the ingredients are well mixed. check the consistency, if it is too thick, add the meat stock or more water and stir properly.
- If you notice the chunks to be to chunky or too large, use a kitchen knife to cut through all the folded cocoyam to reduce their sizes while it’s still on fire. Some people prefer it with chunks; cover it the pot and leave it to simmer on a low heat for 5more minutes.
- Pour the scent or curry leaves you have shredded and stir it again.
- Put off the heat and serve it with cool drink.