Mbongo Tchobi is a one-pot spicy black stew made with aromatic traditional spices and fresh herbs simmered with fish. So, if you are looking for a quick and easy recipe to add to your repertoire, look no further than this.
This delicacy originated from the Bassa tribe in Cameroon and it’s now enjoyed by many. When I was a little girl, I saw my mom cooking this dish and I was like, why is the soup black? I was skeptical about eating it. I didn’t eat it till I was grown, trust me it was so good and it became one of my favorite stews.
What is Mbongo Tchobi?
It’s a spicy black stew made from burnt mbongo spice with fish and aromatic ingredients. Mbongo spice is simply “Alligator pepper” which has been burnt till it’s black. The stew derived its color from the burnt spice. This sauce is mostly served with plantains or starchy sides like rice, yams, and cocoyams.
Below is the image of the main ingredient, Mbongo spice from Etsy.
This spice can be gotten whole or ground from Cameroon or if you are in the diaspora, you can buy it from an African grocery store, Etsy, or Amazon.
If you have seafood allergies or you don’t want to use fish, chicken, beef, and pork are perfect substitutes.
- 1 Whole fish scaled, gutted and sliced.
- 2 tbsp Mbongo spice
- ½ tsp Black pepper
- ¼ tsp Whitepepper
- ½ tsp African nutmeg
- ½ tsp Contri onion Optional
- 1 tsp Salt
- 2 tsp Seasoning powder or bouillon. Adjust if needed
- 6-7 grains Njangsa or 2 tsp ground
- 3-4 sprigs Parsley fresh
- 4 Garlic Cloves
- 1 medium Onion
- 3 Green onions
- ¼ stalk Leeks
- 2 Habanero peppers
- Fresh Basil
- 1 cup Water
- 1 cup Cooking oil
- Chop all the fresh ingredients and blend with the njangsa until smooth. Even if the njangsa is ground, blend again.
- Now put the fish in a large mixing bowl, add the blended mix with all the dry ingredients.
- Using a spoon, mix well until combined or the fish is well coated.
- In a pot, add cooking oil and let it heat up for about 1 minute.
- Pour in the fish mix into the pot with 1 cup of water.
- Stir with a spoon and cover the pot let it cook on medium heat till the fish cooks through for 20 minutes.
- Keep checking the pot every 5 minutes to avoid it from burning and stir gently, be careful not to shred the fish.
- Add water if needed, or if you want a thicker stew, let the water dry off.
- Now serve immediately with plantains or any side. Enjoy!