#9 Nigeria: Itiakiet stew (kidney bean stew with a peanut sauce)

Itiakiet stew

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The whole purpose of this blog is really about giving me a reason to try cooking and eating some new things. This red kidney bean stew from Nigeria, served with fried plantain, green beans and rice provided a couple of firsts for me: the first time I’ve used peanut butter as a cooking ingredient (I am much more used to spreading it on toast!); and the first time I’ve cooked plantain. Result!

This is quite a hot dish – the bird’s eye chilies make sure of that – but if you’re ok with that then this is a great recipe to try. The peanut sauce blends well with the other ingredients, to create a distinctive nutty taste, but one which doesn’t override the other flavours.  This is absolutely delicious and I am really glad that I decided to give it a try.

Ingredients (serves 4-6)

  • 2 cans red kidney beans
  • 2 medium onions, finely chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 8 green bird’s eye chilies, chopped
  • 1 green pepper, chopped
  • 5 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 cans chopped tomatoes
  • 1 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 3 tbsp lemon juice
  • 3 tbsp peanut butter

Method 

  1. Fry the onion, garlic, chilies and green pepper in a pot using groundnut oil if you have it (I used vegetable oil instead) until the onions become clear.
  2. Add the cumin and cayenne pepper and fry for a couple more minutes. Then add the chopped tomatoes and lemon juice. Stir the mix well and then bring to boil. Reduce the heat and simmer gently for 15 minutes.
  3. While the tomato mixture is simmering, put the peanut butter in a small bowl. Add the liquid from one of the cans of kidney beans and mix together to make the peanut sauce.
  4. Next add the peanut sauce and kidney beans to the pot, stir, cover and simmer for a further 10 to 15 minutes.
  5. Serve with basmati rice, fried plantain and green beans.

Acknowledgement: I came across this recipe on Maninas: Food Matters blog, which had been adapted from one published in Madhur Jaffrey’s World Vegetarian.

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