How To Make Efo Riro – The Tastiest Healthy Soup Out There

Yoruba soups are famous Nigerian dishes that have a unique taste and authentic recipes, very different from traditional soups from other countries. Efo Riro is one of such meals. As with most of the traditional dishes, there are no one “true” Efo Riro recipes. There are a lot of different ways the question of how to make Efo Riro can be answered, and most of them result in an incredibly tasty dish you can surprise your close ones with. So, here are the best methods of how to make Efo Riro soup.

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1. Ingredients

“Efo” translates to “vegetables”, which means that ingredients for Efo Riro include a lot of healthy and green foods. But, as most of the Yoruba cuisine, Efo Riro soup has some meat and fish in it. So, here is what you need to have before learning, how to cook Efo Riro:

  • 1 cup of palm oil (for 5-6 portions);
  • 1 medium-sized onion;
  • 4 red bell peppers (Tatashe);
  • 2 scotch bonnets (Ata Rodo);
  • 2 tomatoes;
  • 2 tbsp of locust beans (iru);
  • Assorted meat, which can include beef, goat meat, smoked catfish, any kind of dried fish;
  • 2 bouillon cubes;
  • Salt, pepper.

Different variations of Efo Riro soup recipe may also include:

  • Spinach (Efo Shoko);
  • Green Amaranth (Efo Tete);
  • Floated pumpkin (Ugwu).

2. How to cook Efo Riro

Here is what you need to do with the ingredients to learn how to prepare vegetable soup Efo Riro:

  1. Chop the onions and peppers, either with a knife or with the help of a blender;
  2. Boil the meat until there is almost no broth. If you’re wondering, how to make Efo Riro Sisi Yemmie style – take every kind of meat you have and cook them in separate pots until tender;
  3. Heat up palm oil with half an onion. When the oil is hot enough, and the rest of the chopped onions;
  4. Fry peppers till the excess water evaporates. Then add them to the oil;
  5. Add the tomatoes, meat and bouillon cubes to the mix. Let it cook, carefully stirring from time to time;
  6. When the mix becomes drier, and the rest of the ingredients and cook for a couple more minutes. Add salt and pepper to your taste.
  7. Another thing you need to know in order to learn how to prepare Efo Riro is how to serve the dish. Decorate it with bright fresh vegetables you might have leftovers of, serve with rice, pounded yam or fufu.

3. Other versions

These additions to the traditional soup don’t change its basic taste too much, but they make it somewhat healthier and more unique. Here are the best alternative ways how to cook Efo Riro soup:

3.1. How to cook Efo Riro with spinach

This is the most common variation of this Yoruba soup. Chop the spinach leaves and add them with all the other vegetables before adding meat. Your soup will be greener and definitely healthier, as spinach is full of iron and different vitamins.

3.2. How to make Efo Riro without palm oil

According to some studies, palm oil is not that great for your health. If you want to get rid of this questionable item in your recipe, you can use some broth instead of it. Either take it from the meat you’ve been boiling or make some with bouillon cube, water, and some seasoning to your taste.

3.3. How to make Efo Riro with Shoko

Shoko, also known as Lagos spinach, is another vegetable you can add to your soup. But be careful, it is pretty heavy and nutritious, so don’t add too much of it if you don’t want to make your dish too overwhelming. Add chopped Shoko leaves with other vegetables before adding meat.

3.4. How to make Efo Riro with Ugwu

Although Ugwu is mostly known for its oily seeds, you can use the leaves of this plant too. And they are a great addition to this dish. Add them instead of spinach or Shoko leaves, and don’t forget to use them as a decoration.

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