How to Prepare Nsukka Okpa

Written By Helen Nneka Okpala on Monday, 17 April 2017 | April 17, 2017

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Already prepared okpa for eating

Okpa is a delicacy made from Bambara Nuts and rich in protein. This food is unique with Nsukka people. The nuts are grounded into powder many times before it can be used for food as okpa. Some people cook the nuts and eat it like that jsut as you cook groundnuts. Most of us believe Okpa as a food, emanated from Nsukka, but most eastern parts of Nigeria now prepare it and for commercial purposes too. There is this popular. Ninth Mile corner Okpa which is usually very colourful.

Travellers enjoy okpa a lot. Surprisingly, it is being prepared abroad by the Igbos who live there. You cannot but live without this staple food which is equally cheap to prepare. Most students in University of Nigeria, Nsukka live on Okpa for breakfast and even lunch. Okpa is preferrably taken with pap, tea or garri (for drinking). Some people add some pieces of fresh biter leaf while preparing their okpa. This adds a unique aroma to the taste. Okpa is very easy to prepare,
and needs just three ingredients - oil, salt and pepper. Okpa  may be simple to prepare, but it requires good cooking skills. The ingredients are few. Check it out:
Bambara nuts

Cooking time: 1 hour

1. One painter of Bambara nuts (Vigna subterranea) from which you will use 4 milk cups.
2. Dry Uziza
3. Yellow  or red Pepper (otanjere)
4. Fresh Palm oil
5. Salt to taste
6. Waterproof or mould
Preparing okpa during cooking Xnatives Cooking competition


1. First dehusk the bambaranuts by grinding it the first time (not in power). Just like breaking it in two. The grinder should be very lose.
2. Grind and sieve up to four times
3. Pour half painter of water in a pot and place on a burner to boil
4. Pour 4 cups of the white powered okpa in a bowl
5. Pound the dry uziza in a dry mortar and add to the dry misture of okpa
6. Make a whole at the centre and pour one butter cup (250g) of fresh red palm oil.
7. Wash your hands and beging to mix together until no white colour can be found in the mixture
8. Mix a little hot water with cold water to get warm water
9. From your bown of warm water, pour little by little in the bowl of okpa and oil mixture
10. Use your hand to mix well until no lump is found
Mixing the Okpa
11. Start pouring the water little by little until it forms a consistency that is neither watery nor thick. You will know it is okay when you scoop it with your cooking spoon. If you see white tiny foams floating at the top, that may be a sign that it has turned watery and not going to turn out fine. Another tip is that you should not add hot water; it should be warm as earlier stated. Hot water makes the consitensy to be uneven after cooking. Cold water is not good either. It makes the okpa seem undone even after cooking it.
12. Add salt little by little and stir until it is ok on your tongue.
Tieing the okpa in a nylon to put in the pot of hot water
13. Add pepper. I love seeing strands of red fresh pepper in my okpa, so I don't fully grind it. It's just a matter of choice.
14. Stir and scoop quantity of choice in your moi moi-like mould or santana waterproof. Do not use the type called madam sorry. This will burst in the pot of hot water. Ensure to ask the sellers for okpa waterproof. They know it.
15. After one hour, your okpa should be ready for eating.

Good luck as you try your okpa, and don't forget to share your recipe with us by clicking here to submit.

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About Helen Nneka Okpala

Hello! My name is Helen Nneka Okpala (nee Eke), and you are welcome to my blog. I love cooking food as much as I enjoy the eating. I am Igbo by tribe, and fell in love with cooking when I was in my teens. Meanwhile, I am a graduate of Botany/Library and Information Science, University of Nigeria, Nsukka. You can reach out to me here: Twitter: @helensfood


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