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Nigerian ‘Road Trip Snacks’

by on August 31, 2015
 

There are some things that are confined to the highways and express ways of Nigerian roads. Certain delicacies you’ll find at Junction towns – a special kind of fried yam and chicken at Saminaka, Bush meat (game to you) and Pounded yam at Ore, Kpokpogari and groundnut at Ughelli.

We wait for them with excitement. We are aware of our journey to indulgence and maybe decadence. We still ourselves for these moments of deep pleasure and remembrance. Of road trips of old. With parents, with family, on our way to school and back home. We want to relive the ‘then’, now. And we do. My road trip to Ilesha a few weeks ago was full of interesting things:

Akara Osu

Our trip on the Ife/ Ilesha expressway took us past Osu, where hot bean cakes are sold in newspapers.  Akara Osu is a thick, bean fritter made with fresh beans ground without water yet beaten till light. Coarsely blended onions and chili peppers are added, the mixture is seasoned and huge dollops are deep-fried in palm oil till a super crisp/crunchy coat forms. Alongside the stalls of women frying and selling Akara Osu, you’ll find stall full of fresh loaves of bread which you  might cop for Akara burgers :). {Recipe – Dooney’s Kitchen} _DSC0253_DSC0254_DSC0263

Dodo Ikire

Ever had overripe plantains on the counter? Enter Dodo Ikire.  Where sweet, ripe plantains are tossed in coarsely ground chili peppers, shaped into little cones in moulds (?) and then fried. {Recipe – Dooney’s Kitchen} _DSC0423_DSC1016

Guinea fowl Eggs

Akwaogazi (Igbo), Eyin awo (?Yoruba) . Prized for their nutritive qualities, these eggs ‘seasonal’ – ‘In West Africa, laying is largely confined to the rainy season. (Source: FAO)

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Robo

This snack is a by-product from making melon seed oil (Ororo Egusi). Once the oil is extracted from the seeds, the residual crushed/ ground seeds (high in protein) are seasoned and formed into balls/ cakes which are then deep-fried – your robo snack. They are similar to a groundnut cake made in the north of Nigeria called Kuli Kuli. A version exists, combined with beans and that is known as igbalo – not tried that one yet. They taste extremely nutty. At first crack bite, I get toasted peanut flavour, then the heat follows. The finish? Definitely Egusi. _DSC1004

Aadun

It is corn season and Aadun – a sweet, crumbly spicy pyramid of corn et al bears us witness. In Yoruba, Aadun means sweet  but this savoury snack of roasted corn flour/meal, oil and spices is anything but. I found the taste and texture interesting – crumbly with a light powder-feel on the tongue. {Recipe – 9jaFoodie} _DSC1006_DSC1007

What are/ were your favourite snacks/ foods to buy on road trips?