Nigerian Goat Meat Pepper Soup

This popular one-pot soup is a light broth with any meat of choice, most commonly goat, catfish or chicken (native chicken) flavoured with African spices and herbs such as ehuru (calabash nutmeg, African nutmeg), negro pepper (Ethiopian pepper, Senegal pepper), lemongrass, habanero pepper, uziza leaves, scent leaves or wild basil. Some people eat this soup with boiled white rice or put yam, agidi (balls of corn flour), plantains or potatoes as I did in this recipe. Growing up in Nigeria, I remember my aunts craving this soup after giving birth as well as my mother giving my siblings and me this soup when we were recovering from malaria. This soup is very simple to make and even if you can’t get your hands on the traditional ingredients there are some pretty close substitutes that I listed next to the traditional ingredients.

Ingredients

700g goat meat with or without skin cut in bite-sized pieces.

3 tablespoons of pepper soup spice mix (3 seeds calabash nutmeg (substitute-nutmeg, 25g ground cumin, 25g cloves, 50g allspice, 50g dried ginger, 25g cinnamon.)

Habanero peppers (according to heat tolerance)

1 medium red onion

2 Maggi bouillon cubes

Salt, to taste

2 teaspoons of blended crayfish (optional)

Efirin/scent leaves (substitute-fresh basil or parsley)

3 Idaho potatoes cut into thick cubes

Cooking

  • Wash goat meat thoroughly and place in a sizeable pot. Put enough water to cover the goat meat and then some.
  • Cut onions into tiny pieces if you want pieces of onions in your soup like me. I love onions!
  • Add Maggi cubes, 1 tablespoon of pepper soup spice mix, blended crayfish (optional) and onions to pot of goat meat.
  • Stir and simmer on low heat until broth comes to a boil.
  • Once it starts boiling, add 2 more tablespoons of spice mix and continue to simmer.
  • Adjust salt and bouillon cubes to personal taste, simmering until the goat meat is tender.
  • When the meat is almost done, rinse potato cubes and put in the soup. Allow to cook some more until potatoes are cooked through but still firm.
  • Once the soup is done, cut scent leaves or basil/parsley finely and put in the soup.
  • Gently stir, let simmer (Lots of simmering!) for 5 more minutes and your soup is done.
  • Serve and Enjoy!

*Goat meat is tough, so to get maximum results (succulent goat meat) using a pressure cooker or cooking it on low heat will help.

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