It is definitely Moin Moin season on the blog, or more like anything to do with peeled beans. Ever since I discovered how to peel beans in a blender (procedure HERE), all the dishes I had previously ignored have come crawling out of the wood works. First it was Ekuru (recipe HERE), then Akara pancake (recipe HERE), today it is Moin Moin. My next step is the Big Daddy of them all, Gbegiri which I am also itching to make soon.
Why Eclectic Moin Moin? Well, the definition of eclectic is “deriving ideas, style, or taste from a broad and diverse range of sources“. Well, this describes this moin moin perfectly. I was just explaining to a colleague recently what Moin Moin was, and he said he was going to try it out. He is English mind you, and the way I described Moin Moin to him was that it is at best a blank canvas of blended beans. Take peeled beans, blend it and then get creative with it. You can add anything you wish to it. It’s time we think of Moin Moin like Pizza. We have been too traditional and limiting with it. Make it a meaty deluxe version, or fish and seafood, you could even have a veggie moin moin, or a vegan moin moin, I am even extending it as far as adding dairy to it, cream or even cheese. If the idea of adding cheese to it is scary, you could make a creamy chilliy sauce and serve with it. Let us make it a challenge for us today to think outside the box where Moin Moin is concerned. The next time you make it, add something that you have never used before, even it is just one new ingredient, and then get bolder to push the envelope from there. The link to my previous Moin Moin Elemi Plenty recipe is HERE.
Lets work through our local spices and for example, uziza will be great with Moin Moin, so would ehuru, or Uda. Something extra to give it a kick. Or our local vegeables, efinrin (scent leaf, nchawu, ntong) for one. Something your taste buds won’t be expecting. I still went traditional with this one, but it is eclectic in a way because I pulled ideas from different sources, used different types of similar ingredients, and it was very delicious. My totally new ingredient was Pomo (cow skin). Instead of cooking it on its own, I created a rich fish stock of 2 types of strong flavoured smoked fish. If you have run out of beef stock for Moin Moin, just make a fish stock. Here’s how I made my Eclectic Moin Moin.
You will need
3 cups of brown beans
3/4 cup of Pomo – you could replace this with smoked goat meat or turkey
1/2 cup Smoked catfish
1/4 cup smoked red prawns
2 boiled eggs
1/4 cup Ground crayfish
1 cooking spoon of Sunflower oil
1 1/2 cooking spoons of Palm Oil
1 Tatashe – red bell pepper
2 small onions
1 stump of ginger
2 pieces of ata rodo – scotch bonnet/habanero pepper
Fresh small prawns
Fresh giant Shrimps
Salt Seasoning cubes
1. Add the smoked fish, smoked red prawns, ponmo and chopped onions into a pot, add enough water to cover them, season with a little salt and bring to boil till the ponmo gets soft enough to chew easily.
2. Soak the beans for 5 minutes or under in cold water. Peel the skin off by pulsing in a blender, rinse out the chaff and blend. The procedure to do this can be found HERE
3. Blend the beans with tatashe, ata rodo, onions and ginger till you have a smooth paste
4. Mix the vegetable oil with the palm oil and heat up in the microwave for about a minute and a half. Remember to use a cover to prevent splashes. Once the oils are hot, add to the bean paste. Dooney’s Kitchen Tip: it is advisable to heat up the palm oil to prevent a curdling taste on your tongue.
5. By now the ponmo should be soft, so would the other contents of the pot. Empty the entire contents into the bean batter and stir. Add the ground crayfish and stir too. If the batter is not sufficiently liquid enough, add warm water gently till you get to a consistency where the batter is dripping. Thick batter = hard moin moin. Fluid batter = soft, moist moin moin. The picture below, should give you an idea of how liquid your batter should be.
6. Once you’ve gotten the consistency right, season with salt and seasoning cubes. Now, there is one tip I had forgotten about until my Mum mentioned it during her visit last year. Mummy’s Kitchen Tip: when you make moin moin, you season it to the point it is slightly salty, so that when it steams or bakes, the salt level will be just right. When she means slightly salty, not to the extent you will cringe when you taste the uncooked batter, but to the point that, if this was soup you were cooking to be served immediately, you will dilute it a little with water to get back to normal levels. i.e. go slightly above the level of your everyday cooking salt levels. Again, slightly. Not with seasoning cubes mind you, just salt.
To be sure I would be able to replicate her absolutely scrumptious Moin Moin, I divided the batter into two. One I seasoned to normal salt levels, the other I went slightly above, when they say don’t argue with your mother, it is not just a something concocted to make you a good child. hehehehe. Disobedience doesn’t pay sometimes. Lol. The batch using her tip tasted miles better than the other batch. The other batch tasted great no doubt, but it lacked in salt. So, if you have always wondered why your batter which tasted delicious before you cooked it, is a little underwhelming when it was done, now you know why. The steaming process dilutes the concentration of salt.
7. Slice the eggs and prep the rest of your toppings
8. Spoon the bean batter into your choice of containers. Finish off with the rest of your toppings and steam. If you want the leafy flavour but haven’t been successful with wrapping it, click HERE to find an alternative to wrapping, but still using the leaves.
9. Then you steam in a pot, or bake in an oven at 200 degrees centigrade for 45 – 50 minutes, and that’s your Eclectic Moin Moin done and ready to enjoy.
…….Isn’t that a beauty? The combination of vegetable and Palm oil is a must try
I’m entertaining this weekend, and I already have very grand plans for this Moin Moin. A little twist to it, that will make you wonder why Moin Moin hasn’t been used in this way since. Stay tuned…………………….