Dried catfish pepper soup is a traditional and popular dish in Nigeria that is enjoyed for its delicious flavour and numerous health benefits.
Made with dried catfish, spices, and vegetables, this soup is high in protein, low in fat, and packed with essential nutrients. It is also believed to have medicinal properties that can help to boost the immune system and improve digestion.
In this article, we will explore the history, ingredients, and health benefits of dried catfish pepper soup and provide a step-by-step recipe to make it at home.
So, Whether you are a fan of Nigerian cuisine or simply looking for a new and healthy recipe, dried catfish pepper soup is a must-try dish that will surely delight your taste buds.
Here is a step-by-step guide to making the best Dried Catfish Pepper Soup:
● 2-3 pieces of dried catfish, approx 200gms
● 2 cups of water
● 1 small onion, chopped
● 2 cloves of garlic, minced
● 1-2 teaspoons of fresh ginger, grated
● 1-2 teaspoons of ground crayfish
● 1-2 teaspoons of ground pepper
● 2-3 small scotch bonnet peppers, chopped (optional)
● Salt to taste
● 1-2 cups of chopped vegetables (e.g. spinach, ugu, or pumpkin leaves)
– Immerse the dried catfish in water and let it soak for about 20-30 minutes or until it is soft.
– In a pot, bring 2 cups of water to a boil and add the soaked catfish.
– Add the chopped onions, minced garlic, and grated ginger to the pot.
– Add the ground crayfish, ground pepper, and scotch bonnet peppers (if using).
– Allow the soup to simmer for 15-20 minutes or until the catfish is fully cooked and the flavours melded together.
– Season with salt, according to taste.
– Add the chopped vegetables to the soup and allow it to cook for another 5-10 minutes or until the vegetables are tender.
– Serve hot, and enjoy!
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Note: Dried catfish pepper soup can be served with a side of boiled plantains, yams, or rice.
What Has Made Dried Catfish Pepper Soup Such A Popular Delicacy?
The perfect blend of ingredients, along with the nutritional and soothing benefits, have made Dried Catfish Pepper Soup popular in and beyond Nigeria.
1. Dried catfish: Dried catfish is the star ingredient in this dish, and it is what gives the soup its distinct and rich flavour. The fish is dried in the sun or in a smoker and can be purchased in most African or speciality food stores.
2. Vegetables: Vegetables such as spinach, ugu (pumpkin leaves), onions, and tomatoes are often used to add texture, colour, and nutritional value to the soup.
3. Spices: The soup gets its heat from a blend of spices that typically include ginger, garlic, black pepper, chilli pepper, bonnet peppers and sometimes, a traditional mix of African pepper soup spice.
4. Seasonings: Seasonings like crayfish, bouillon cubes, and salt are often used to enhance the flavour of the dish.
5. Herbs: Some recipes include herbs such as scent leaves, thyme, or basil, which can add a fragrant and earthy taste to the soup.
6. Lemon or lime: Adding a squeeze of fresh lemon or lime juice to the soup just before serving can help to brighten and balance the flavours.
See also: Dried Catfish: Everything You Need To Know
History Of Dried Catfish Pepper Soup:
The history of dried catfish pepper soup can be traced back to the traditional cuisine of Nigeria, particularly in the country’s Southern and Middle Belt regions. Catfish has long been a popular ingredient in Nigerian cuisine due to its abundance in the country’s rivers, lakes and production farms.
The practice of drying catfish is believed to have originated to preserve the fish for later use, as it can be difficult to keep fresh fish for extended periods in Nigeria’s tropical climate.
Over time, dried catfish became a staple ingredient in many Nigerian dishes, including pepper soup. Pepper soup is a spicy broth made with a variety of ingredients, including meat, fish, vegetables, and a blend of spices.
Dried catfish pepper soup is a variation of this dish that is made with dried catfish, spices, and vegetables and is known for its unique and savoury flavour.
Today, dried catfish pepper soup is enjoyed by many in Nigeria and beyond as a delicious and healthy meal that reflects the rich cultural heritage of the country.
It remains an important part of Nigeria’s traditional cuisine and continues to be a popular comfort food that is served in homes and restaurants alike.
Health Benefits Of Dried Catfish Pepper Soup:
Dried catfish pepper soup has several health benefits due to its nutritious ingredients and the spices used in the recipe.
Here are some of the health benefits of this traditional Nigerian dish:
● Rich in protein: Dried catfish pepper soup is a rich source of protein, which is essential for building and repairing tissues in the body. The high protein content of the dish makes it a filling and satisfying meal that can help to curb hunger and prevent overeating.
● Low in fat: Dried catfish pepper soup is a low-fat dish that is ideal for people who are trying to maintain a healthy diet or lose weight. Unlike other soups that may contain fatty meat or cream, dried catfish pepper soup is made with lean fish and vegetables.
● Contains omega-3 fatty acids: Catfish is a good source of omega-3 fatty acids, which have been shown to improve heart health, reduce inflammation in the body, and promote healthy brain function.
● Boosts the immune system: The spices used in dried catfish pepper soup, such as ginger and pepper, are believed to have anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties that can help to boost the immune system and fight off infections.
● Improves digestion: The spices in dried catfish pepper soup are also believed to have digestive properties that can help to relieve indigestion, bloating, and other digestive issues.
● High in vitamins and minerals: Dried catfish pepper soup contains a variety of vegetables, such as spinach, ugu, or pumpkin leaves, that are rich in vitamins and minerals, including vitamin A, vitamin C, and iron.
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Overall, dried catfish pepper soup is a flavorful and nutritious dish that is enjoyed by many. Its significance in Nigerian cuisine makes it an important part of the country’s cultural heritage, but its popularity doesn’t end within the continent.
Do you wish to have this delicious soup delivered to your doorstep?
Kabaia has got you covered! Along with authentic-tasting Dried Catfish Pepper Soup, they have a whole range of other catfish products! All of which is a treat to try!
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See also: Delicious Tasting Dried Catfish Recipes For Your Special Occasion
Dried catfish pepper soup is a very popular delicacy in Delta state Nigeria and it’s loved by many, however I prefer basil leaves as the vegetable because of its great scent that blends perfectly with other local pepper soup spices.