Eru soup is one dish I can’t count how many times I’ve cooked, and never gotten any issues with it. Eru is one of my favorite meals which I never get tired of eating. I was going through my blog one day, and I was shocked there was no Eru recipe. What was I thinking? Anyway, it’s here now.
What is Eru?
Eru soup is a combination of greens, proteins, and palm oil. Eru or Okazi leaves (as it’s called in Nigeria) is a creeping plant Gnetum Africanum which grows wild in the African forest. Eru is a hard green that must be cooked with a softener like water leaves or spinach. It’s a traditional meal of the Bayangi people in the South West Region of Cameroon. Trust me when I say many people love this dish. Nigerians cook this, but the method is slightly different, and they call it Afang soup, not Eru.
How can I cook Eru to maintain its Green color?
- If using fresh Eru, cook on high heat, if not, it turns brown.
- If using dried Eru, soak in warm water for 30 minutes to 1 hour before cooking. NEVER soak in hot water. NEVER soak in warm water overnight. Also, cook on high heat.
Where can I buy Eru leaves?
Eru is often sold already sliced. Get it from an African grocery store if you are in the diaspora or from the market if you are in Africa
What can I serve with Eru?
Water fufu, Garri, pounded yam, or any starchy sides.
Can I use Vegetable oil?
NO! Only palm oil is used. You can cut down on the oil by reducing the quantity.
Now let’s make the tastiest Eru ever.
Eru Soup Recipe
- 5 Cups Dried Eru or Ukazi leaves. packed
- 500 grams Waterleaves or spinach Sliced Or 500g frozen
- ½ Cup ground Crayfish
- 2 lb Cow Skin, tripe and beef cut into chunks
- 1 cup Smoked fish deboned
- 2 Habenero peppers optional
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 tsp Seasoning powder
- 3 -4 Cups Palm oil
- 3-4 cups Water
- If using dried eru or okazi leaves, soak in warm to touch water for 30 minutes to 1 hour before cooking to maintain its green color. Read the notes above for tips.
- In a pot, add the beef and cow skin. Sprinkle the 1 tsp salt and 2 tsp seasoning powder, add water and cook on high heat till tender. Check every 5 minutes to add water in batches.
- In a separate pot, boil the tripe with water, salt, and seasoning powder till tender. Boil till the water dries. If you are not using tripe, Skip it!
- When the beef and cow skin are thoroughly cooked, and the water dries, add the cooked tripe, water leaves, or spinach.
- Cook on high heat and continue stirring for about 5 minutes so the spinach or water leaves don't turn brown. They will produce enough juice to soften the eru.
- Now drain eru from the water and add into the pot, mix till combined and let it cook for 5 minutes.
- Add palm oil and thoroughly mix. Then add crayfish, smoked fish, and habanero peppers. Remember, the beef already contains salt and seasoning powder. Now stir till combined. Let it cook for another 3-5 minutes.
- Taste to adjust seasonings. If eru is too watery, let it cook to dry. If too dry, add little water.
- Serve with a side of choice and enjoy.