GarauGarau: Yaji-Spiced Rice


I don’t know if GarauGarau originates from Garau, a place in Yobe state in the north of Nigeria but this rice dish is delicious and worthy of being the flagship dish for any city, state or region – in Nigeria and beyond.

It reminds me of a similar-named dish in Indonesian Cuisine, Gado Gado, which I’ve enjoyed for its mix – rice and vegetables with sate

What’s special about this? Well, it involves yaji and rice, did I mention quick and easy? Y’all know I’m a big fan of yaji – suya spice so when I discovered I could make a Fried Rice’esque dish with it, I didn’t wait. I got right in there.

Inspired by 1Q Food Platter’s post, and the comments of her readers, I made sides of steamed honey beans and plantain. Then I decided that cilantro would be peach with it.

This was a simple dish. Typically, GarauGarau is white rice topped with yaji and oil. I decided to go the stir-fried route. I had beef suya, vegetables, and cooked white rice so I broke the recipe into two key bits:


To make the rice, I stir fried my leftover suya in a touch of oil and added some peanuts and rice. When it was almost cooked, I sprinkled some yaji over the top.


It looked glorious.


To finish off, I piled it into a bowl and topped with more yaji.


To serve – I piled my plate high with rice then built a tent of plantain and beans, with cilantro for a hedge of protection. The final elements? Crunchy bits from my flavoured oil and some more yaji.


It was delicious – the spiced, fried rice with nuggets of meat and crunch from the peanuts; The soft, sweet beans and the plantain and the herbiness from the cilantro.


I served extra yaji on the side.


Delicioso – I’ve always loved the combination of rice, beans and plantain and this is no exception. 


Have you had this before?


  1. Gators Garo is such a simple but tasty dish for the poor. It’s amazing how you can jazz it up just as you have just done. Real groundnut oil in the dish makes such a big difference to the taste.

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