Bitterleaf also known as “Ndolé” in Cameroon and “Ewuru”and “Onugbu” in some parts of Nigeria is a well-known medicinal plant with several uses attributed to it apart from cooking.
It is the key ingredient of this dish. The leaves are bitter in taste and are sold fresh or dried. Bitterleaf can be used to prevent and cure diabetes. It can be made into a juice to lower fever and most recently as a non-pharmaceutical solution to persistent fever, headache, and joint pain associated with AIDS.
Combined with fresh groundnuts, crayfish and other healthy ingredients like tomatoes, onions, white and black pepper and accompanied with boiled ripe plantains or yam, bitterleaves makes a healthy well-balanced enjoyable meal!
Let’s get to cooking!
500g fresh Bitter Spinach (Bitterleaf), washed
100g fresh Spinach, chopped (optional)
250g Peanuts, skinless
200g fresh Shrimps
250g smoked Fish (Stockfish)
250g lean Beef
6-8 Garlic cloves
1/2 Celery stem
3 Parsley leaves
1 tsp. white Pepper
1 large Onion, chopped
100g dried Shrimps (Crayfish), half ground
4 Tsps. Olive Oil (or Peanut oil)
Sea salt to taste
Vegetable Bouillon to taste
- Slice and boil bitterleaves in a pot with bicarbonate soda untill it it partially loses it’s bitter taste.
- In a large pot season meat with salt, maggi and onions, the boil until tender.
- Boil stock fish with salt and water; add it to the boiled meat. Get stock from the meat and stock fish and preserve for immediate cooking for freeze for later usage.
- Boil peanuts for about 10 minutes in another pot. Let it cool. Next, pulse in a food processor or blender into a coarse consistency using water to facilitate the blending process.
- Now add beef and stockfish to peanut paste and bring to the boil for 10 mins, stiriing in between to avoid clumps and burning.
- Blend onion, garlic, celery, parsley and white pepper into a fine paste and add to the mixture of peanuts and meat.
- Add in crayfish and let it simmer for 10 minutes stirring frequently to prevent burns. Season with salt and Maggi.
- Add washed bitterleaves, stir and simmer.
- In a small skillet, heat oil, add fresh shrimp, stirring constantly until they turn from White to pink. Then add onions and stir-fry for 2 more mins.
- Last but not least, add shrimp and onion mixture, into the pot of Ndole. Stir for a 5mins.
- Serve hot with any side dish of choice.
- 1. Soak stockfish overnight. It will take shorter to cook when soaked.
- 2. If you are using dry bitterleaves, soak overnight and rinse before cooking.
- 3. Vegetarians should leave out all meat and fish.
- 4. Use vegetable Bouillon for more taste