Ofe Utazi recipe (Utazi Soup) is one of the traditional Igbo delicacy prepared with Utazi leaf.
Naturally, Utazi leaf is bitter although it has amazing health benefits. However, when properly squeezed to extract the bitter taste; that’s when it can be used to cook this delicious Igbo soup.
Basically, fresh Utazi leaf goes well with Isi Ewu also known as Goat head recipe in English. Abacha and Ugba popularly called African salad, roasted yam with palm oil sauce and the likes.
However, for a homemade Ofe Utazi prepared with Ede which is cocoyam as a thickener. A sizable amount of Utazi leaf is required to add a distinct flavor to your soup. This leaf not only adds flavor but also serve as the vegetable in the soup, isn’t that beautiful?
Health Benefits of Utazi Leaf
Utazi leaf botanically called Gongronema Latifolium; is a plant used as a vegetable and spice in traditional medicine also called Arokeke in Yoruba language.
It is used to relieve pains, treat Ulcer, worm, diarrhea, constipation, and it helps improve digestion, lower blood sugar as well. So, these are some of the health benefits of utazi leaf.
How to Prepare Utazi Soup – Ofe Utazi
- 1kg chicken or beef
- 1 medium-size Stockfish head (Isi okporoko)
- ½ cup Utazi leaves
- 1 small size dry fish (optional)
- 6 medium-size of cocoyam (Ede)
- 2 cooking spoons palm oil
- 1 teaspoon ogiri Igbo or Okpei
- 2 tablespoons crayfish
- 5 pieces scotch bonnet pepper (Atarodo)
- 2 seasoning cubes
- Salt to taste
Method of preparation
- First of all, wash and cut your cocoyam, place in a clean pot, add water, and cook to tender. Thereafter, remove the back and pound using your wooden mortar and pestle into a smooth thick paste.
- Secondly, in a bowl squeeze, the Utazi leaves with little water to remove the bitterness.
- Thirdly, wash the chicken and place in a clean pot, add salt; seasoning cube, water, and boil for about 10 minutes. Then add the stockfish head, and dry fish, allow cooking for another 10 minutes.
- Finally, stir in the palm oil, cocoyam paste (ede), ogiri okpei, crayfish; pepper ensure you have enough water to make the soup; else add more water and cook until consistency thickens.
- In conclusion, squeeze out the Utazi leaves and sprinkle into the thick consistency; stir and taste for salt. Adjust the recipe to what you want by either adding or reducing.
At this point the soup is perfectly cooked and taste yummy!
Serve and enjoy with choice swallow.