Hello 9jafoodie Nation especially those in Nigeria, eku tomato scarcity. This tomato this is really serious, my mother who typically doesn’t complain about anything even mentioned it in passing. Even though I am currently in Canada, I went through the exact same issue this year. It wasn’t a scarcity per se but the cost of fresh produce went through the roof due to decline in the oil sector. I remember buying 3 tatashe for over 6$, tomatoes that was 97cents per pound was almost 2$ per. After spending over $800 on food in one month for my family of 2.5 (lol), I had to adjust. I started using more frozen vegetables, also found some amazing canned produce options without added chemicals.
I will provide some of those recommendations in my next post but for now, here are 10 Nigerian dishes that can be cooked right now without tomatoes
When I was growing up, we typically used Nigerian stew base to prepared beans. Moving to Canada and not having much of anything lead to my discovery of Atagigun (ground dried pepper) in beans. It’s just as creamy as the stew base cooked beans.
To take your beans to the next level; fry the onions in palm oil, add ata-gigun and blended crayfish. Make sure it’s well seasoned then add that into the almost cooked beans. It’s incredibly delicious.
Another beans option that doesn’t require tomato is agoyin sauce. This sauce doesn’t have to be limited to beans; it goes perfectly with boiled rice as well.
The queen of Yoruba stews doesn’t require tomatoes and it is one of the most delicious things you will ever experience. Yes that’s right, it’s an experience. It goes perfectly with local ofada rice but the party doesn’t have to end there, Try it on coconut rice and beans and you will momentarily forget your name.
- Okra Soup (Asepo)
This might be a completely bias opinion but I think Okra is one of the most versatile ingredients in the Nigerian kitchen. There is so much that can be done with it. The famous mixed okra soup aka Ila-asepo doesn’t need tomatoes to shine. Ground dried pepper is all you need to make this delicious pot of amazingness
Heard of it? Tried it? This is a condiment that goes a very long way. It doesn’t require tomatoes and the taste is magical. I will caution the pepperless clan though, this sauce is SPICY!
- Coconut rice
Forget Jollof (okay okay I take that back, Jollof is queen), but you know what is completely underrate? Coconut rice. It’s perfectly delicious and doesn’t need tomatoes to shine
If you know me in any capacity, you know my love for moimoi in unending. The versatility is honesty what keeps me in love. Moimoi is forever bae, doesn’t require any tomatoes and can be served a million different ways
- Vegetable soup
It doesn’t matter if it’s Afang style or if it’s the Yoruba crowning glory Efo riro. You do not need tomatoes to make these soups. They can also serve dual purpose as accompaniment to rice or swallow
- Chicken Peppersoup
No tomatoes, no problem. Just go read the comments on the recipe if you need some convincing
- Chicken Suya Sauce
I created this recipe a few years ago and it’s forever on the most prepared list even in my house. You can make it stirfry style or you can make it a little saucy. Simply swap tatashe (bell pepper) for tomatoes
- Coconut Curry Sauce
This is the ultimate reason why you might just be able to say byebye to tomatoes forever. This curry is addictively delicious and goes perfectly with rice. You can choose to make it with chicken, fish or prawns.
What are some of the tricks you are using in your kitchen to keep cost down? what other dishes would you add to this lists?