If you want to see how our ancestors cooked Ora Soup in those days, oyaa, come into the foodflavor.com.ng let’s go!
Ingredients For Ora Soup
I’ll be using cocoyam,
akwu that’s palm fruits
Ora or oha
dry fish and stock fish
yellow habanero pepper that’s ose nsukka
ogiri igbo if you don’t have ogiri Igbo, you can add Knorr cubes crayfish and beef.
To save huge amounts of time, I’ll be using 3 burners. I have akwu over here, cocoyam and beef over here. I washed the akwu very well before putting it in the pot. Take a close look at the cocoyam. This is the species of cocoyam that is used to cook ora soup and bitter leaf soup. I cook the stock fish and beef in the same pot because they have the same cooking times. Even though our ancestors did not use seasoning cubes, I like using Knorr cubes to season my meat.
You can also read: How to make a Delicious Bitter Leaf soup
Add water and start cooking. Pour water to cover the dry fish and set aside to soak. This is how I pick and cut my oha, yes, with my fingertips. Oha is a very tender vegetable and knife marks can make them dark. I slice the uziza leaves with a knife though. The palm fruit is done when you can easily peel off the flesh by rubbing with your fingers. Pound that in a mortar.
Genius! So our grandmas and great grandmas used akwu instead of palm oil during their time. A lot of people say that even today, bitter leaf soup and ora soup can only be prepared with akwu. It’s not true, you can use palm oil. For me, the only difference is that palm fruit concentrate integrates better into the soup, giving it an overall even color. With palm oil, you run the risk of excess palm oil floating on the soup when you add too much. But once you master the quantity of palm oil to add to your soups, there’s no difference in looks. If you have the time and means to prepare these soups using akwu, please do so, if not, no problem.
Any difference in taste? As far as I’m concerned, there’s no difference in taste. Is there any difference in taste for you? Let me know in the comments. When the meat and stock fish are cooked, remove the stock fish and set aside. The cocoyam is done when it’s soft to touch. Pound till smooth. Debone the stock fish and break into pieces. Then clean the soaked dry fish and debone. Remember when I prepared ofe akwu, I recommended that you separate the palm nuts from the pulp to help you get the thickest concentrate for the ofe akwu? In this case, it is not necessary.
You don’t need the concentrate to have a thick consistency. Ora soup comes with a thickener, cocoyam; which will do the job of thickening the soup for us. So no need to separate them, I go straight to rinsing with as hot water as my hands can handle. When done, spread the nuts to dry and later, you can crack them and eat the kernels with various foods. Please comment below and tell me what you like eating with aku, or what you like eating aku with.
Now! Everything is ready, let’s cook the soup. Slowly decant the palm fruit concentrate into the pot containing the meat making sure you don’t add those sediments you see at the bottom. Add the dry fish, The crayfish, The yellow habanero pepper, The stock fish, When it boils, add the Ogiri Igbo! And add the cocoyam in small scoops. I think that’s enough. I’ll keep the remainder in the freezer. Ora soup should be light, no gbudu gbudu with too much cocoyam. Don’t Cover and cook till all the cocoyam dissolves. Then add the ora and the uziza. Cover and once it boils, stir, and add salt if necessary and it’s done! Serve with any Nigerian swallow, including low carb vegetable fufu meals.