Koki also known as Moi Moi is a well-known and commonly cooked meal made from black-eyed peas in Cameroon, Nigeria and other parts of West Africa. It is made with lots of red Palm oil and Habanero peppers, tied in banana or plantain leaves and served with common staples like plantains, cassava or cocoyams. Its deliciousness makes it an all time favorite in our African cuisine.
REASONS WHY YOU SHOULD INCLUDE BLACK-EYED PEAS IN YOUR DIET
- Rich in fiber: Like most beans, black-eyed peas are rich in the best sort if fiber -soluble fiber – which helps eliminate cholesterol from the Body.
- They are a good source of folate, potassium, copper, phosphorus and manganese and low in sodium which helps to reduce blood pressure.
- Black-eyed peas also contain vital nutrients such as Vit. E and Iron
- They are not only low in fat but they also supply high quality protein which provides a healthy alternative to meat or animal protein.
A plus point for black-eyed peas are the numerous health benefits associated with this superfood. Here are a few of them:
- The fiber in Black-eyed peas helps our digestive system and colon by regulating and aiding to alleviate constipation. Fiber also helps Keep cholesterol at healthy levels by preventing it from being absorbed into the bloodstream. Additionally, high fiber in Black-eyed peas keeps you fuller for longer because they are slowly digested – an important factor for weight control.
- Black-eyed peas contain flavonoids, fiber and no cholesterol and is therefore a heart-healthy food.
- They ar elow in fat and low in calories making them a nutritious accessory for a weightloss diet plan.
Though high in protein and fibre, the excess use of red palm fruit oil making regular consumption of this delicious dish dangerous for our health. Though healthy, palm fruit oil tends to be high in unsaturated fats such that excessive consumption leads to increase in weight, increase risk of Obesity and obesity-related diseases like Coronary heart diseases. To get the best nutritive value from this superfood it is essential to prepare it in a healthy way.
What I realised is that most of us completely de-husk the peas before cooking, a process which not only is time consuming but also unnecessary. De-husking the peas is stripping it from most of its nutrients since most of the valuable nutrients are found in the husk. To benefit from the peas, I recommend you de-husk partially if you do not like the taste or feel of husk in your Moi Moi or if you are just not familiar to blending with the husk. Try leaving on a Little husk and build from there. You will realize that there is actually no difference cooking with the husk. The only difference is the added nutrients which will do your Body so much good!
For this Koki aka. Moi Moi recipe, I soaked the peas overnight and used my mortar and pestle (yes, I love the traditional way of cooking this dish). Though time and energy consuming, grinding in the mortar gives the dish the edge you won’t get using a food processor. Then i added red bell peppers which gave it that beautiful rosé Color, habanero peppers, 2 tablespoons of red palm fruit oil, salt and a handful of fresh spinach. In Cameroon, freshly chopped cocoyam leave not only for a great color-combo but adds a distinct flavor only cocoyam leaves have. Getting cocoyam leaves is practically an impossibility in these parts so I substituted them with fresh spinach leaves and it did the trick!
Like it is traditionally done in Cameroon, I wrapped the Koki paste in fresh banana leaves and the result is zeeliciouly good! Try it out and leave Feedback in the comment area below!
Koki – The Healthier Option
500g of Black Eye Peas
500g Red Bell Pepper
2 Tsps. Red Palm Oil
1/2 Cup of lukewarm Water
5 large Banana Leaves
1 handful fresh Spinach
1 large Onion
1 large Habanero pepper (optional)
Sea salt to taste
- Soak the black eye beans in a bowl with water overnight.
- Wash beans and partially de-husk using either the classical traditional method or using the modern blender method to save time.
- Slice onion and bell peppers and add to washed beans.
- Using a grinding stone, a mortar or your food processor, grind or blend beans to a smooth paste adding water bit by bit as required. Do not add alot of water, as it may make your koki too soft, we do not want that!
- Add sliced spinach and oil into the blended beans. Make sure to warm your oil in a saucepan if oil is not in liquid form.
- Warm leaves over a fire or over a pot of boiling water to prevent leaves from tearing apart during the tying process.
- Add a good quantity of beans into the leaves depending on how big you want the bundles.
- In a large pot, place some leaves inside the pot, add 2 cups of water, bring to a boil, then add your Koki bundles. Cover and steam for 45mins, adding water as required.
- Serve with cassava or any tuber of your choice. Enjoy! This is to your health!
- 1. Do not add alot of water as it may make your Koki too watery and difficult to tie.
- 2. Make smaller bundles. This will help your koki cook faster.
- 3. Add lots of very red bell pepper. This gives your Koki that extra red color, hence you save on oil. It’s good for your health!
- 4. Use empty coconut shells in the place of leaves inside the pot before placing your Koki bundles on top. In this way you steam the Koki. Since the bundles are raised, it makes water entry into the bund