Rice recipes Tag

...or Twelve (12) Shades of Jollof Rice. Jollof rice in the  simplest terms is a beacon for West African cuisine. Texturally, it's half way between the separate, not mushy grains of a pilaf and the 'sauced' creaminess of a risotto. Here are twelve (12) takes from classic to not:

1. Classic: Nigeria & Along the coast of West Africa

This recipe features par-boiled long-grain rice, cooked on the stove top – comfort food at its best and the standard for all Jollofs.

2. Party Rice: Nigeria

Chock full of smoky flavours, commonly cooked over open fire. However, this can also be achieved on the stove top by 'controlled' burning of the rice. The key here is to cook the rice in a vessel that allows burning, preferably stainless steel, aluminium or cast iron as opposed to non-stick.

My home version features flecks of burnt rice - proof of 'authenticity'. _DSC0527

Jollof rice: rice perfection that's half way between the dryness of pilaf and the creaminess of risotto.

'Traditionally', Jollof rice is made with specific ingredients which define the perfect pot - from long-grain rice to scotch bonnet peppers and Maggi cubes for seasoning. I now present the Jollof essentials. Truth too is, essentials are no guarantee to success so one must understand a bit about the 'perfect' combinations.

Now the dust has settled :), we can explore more about Jollof Rice - both a short history and the recent #JollofGate incident.
In the winter of 2010, I made whole wheat Argentine Empanadas. I served them with a fresh herb sauce, Chimichurri, and got many pats on the back! It is fascinating to see how everything we feel about life is (reflected) on the plate. Take Jollof Rice for instance– its popularity is assured offline and online as these twitter hashtags suggest – #JollofGang ,  #JollofIsLife,  #Jollofies,  #JollofNation,  #TeamJollof and the most recent, most controversial  #JollofGate. Jollof Rice - Essential to our ‘culture’. So it's important that West Africans at home and in the diaspora will take up arms to defend anything and everything about  it - its origin, preparation and by God, how it is served. [caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="500"]Nigerian Jollof StickRice Recipe Last Christmas: Smoky Stick Jollof Rice[/caption]

Jollof, definitions
Noun. Verb.
  1. of a red, spiced rice dish loved in every city and town ‘South of the Sahara’ and along the coast of West Africa. Synonyms: Djolof, Benachim (Gambia); Thiéboudienne (Senegal)
  1. to cook in a red, tomato-based sauce: ‘Jollof beans’ – a one pot dish of beans cooked in a rich tomato sauce. West African-speak.
  2. denoting a state of enjoyment: ‘see her, she’s jollofing’ (she’s enjoying herself and I’m not!). Nigerian-speak. Synonyms: enjoyment, pleasure

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