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Sunday Lunch: Asala-Scent Leaf Soup

by on July 5, 2015
 

Yes, a soup made from the African walnut, known as Asala in Yoruba. Because the beautiful crunch and divine nuttiness must be experienced in one lifetime.

The first time I used Asala in a recipe, it was a dip I made – a variation of my scent leaf one. It was beautiful. The characteristic bitterness one experiences after eating it and drinking water (back-to-back) disappears. Instead one is left with a creamy nuttiness that begs exploration.

I remember Funke saying when I shared the post on Instagram, that her grandmother made and ‘Egusi-style‘ soup with it. That got me all excited and I couldn’t wait to make this.

When I considered the vegetables to use, I stayed away from bitterleaf – I didn’t want a double dose, one and two, I was curious about what would happen to the bitterness of the walnuts during cooking. I went with scent leaf, shredded in a Ghanian asanka, not chopped, led by the spirit.

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Don’t you just loveeeeeeeeeeee my aga.living chopping board? Go, on, get one…

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I paired it with water leaf – soft, spinach like greens that are neutral flavoured yet add a silkiness to soups and stews.

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I shelled the walnuts and played with food gradients, seeing how the colour changed from creamy fresh to browny ‘rotten’.

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My protein was ready – stock fish, boiled soft; chunks of snails, kpomo aka cow hide, a Nigerian delicacy and beef.

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There was the seasoned stock – the result of the boiled beef, flavoured with onions, chili peppers and ground crayfish. And so it began in a pot of hot, palm oil smoking with readiness into which the ground nuts went.

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I wanted the essence of the scent leaves infused into the base of the soup so it followed.

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Surf, turf, stock followed and then a sweet short simmer…

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Till it was more sauce than liquid…

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And then I served it with Pounded yam. Of the worst sort – the yam old ended up with koko, seeds but that did nothing to hold me back. because this soup was deliciousness beyond words – fragrant, nutty with a flavour reminiscent of Ugba, African salad. I also tried it with Eba, of cassava meal but p yam trumps.

I LOVEEEEEEEEE it and will make it through out this season.

The bitterness from the walnuts is absent, all that’s left is a creaminess that’s beautiful on the tongue. Sigh.

Try it. Let me know what you think xxx

Asala-Scent Leaf Soup
A delicious Nigerian stew/ eating soup made with Asala, African walnuts - in season.


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1212 calories
19 g
38 g
120 g
27 g
33 g
506 g
220 g
5 g
0 g
81 g

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
506g

Amount Per Serving
Calories 1212
Calories from Fat 1034

% Daily Value *

Total Fat 120g
185%

Saturated Fat 33g
165%

Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 52g
Monounsaturated Fat 29g
Cholesterol 38mg
13%

Sodium 220mg
9%

Total Carbohydrates 19g
6%

Dietary Fiber 7g
30%

Sugars 5g
Protein 27g
Vitamin A
10%
Vitamin C
110%
Calcium
12%
Iron
32%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Ingredients
  1. 4 tablespoons palm oil
  2. 1 cup walnuts (about 20), washed, shelled & pounded
  3. 2 tablespoons scent leaves, shredded/ ground
  4. 1 cup water leaf, chopped
  5. Hot yellow pepper, to taste
  6. A few pieces of cooked beef, 5 or 6
  7. 1/3 cup of chopped Kpomo
  8. 1/4 cup cooked snails
  9. Ground crayfish, to taste
  10. Salt, to taste
Instructions
  1. Add oil to pan and heat up
  2. Add the crushed walnuts and stir. Let cook for a minute or two then season with the ground crayfish and the ground scent leaves
  3. Add the rest of the ingredients - the yellow chilies, meats and a couple of cups of meat stock
  4. Finish by adding the waterleaf and checking for seasoning
  5. Let simmer for 3 - 5 minutes then remove from heat
  6. Serve with pounded yam (I swear, it is the truth and nothing else would do)
beta
calories
1212

fat
120g

protein
27g

carbs
19g

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Kitchen Butterfly http://www.kitchenbutterfly.com/

 

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