Shopping for Nigerian food is very interesting. Our food is colourful and varied with textures, sight and smell. All your sense are alive when shopping for Nigerian food, and sometimes apart from your sight, your sense of smell is your shopping assistant when picking out ingredients. If you are lucky to be shopping in open markets in Nigeria, take it all in, because it is an experience of its own. Fresh, organic food items, coupled with the banter with the stall owners, is such a delight. People who live in Nigeria, who are so used to doing this everyday, will probably wonder why I am romanticising market shopping, but for someone who hasn’t lived in Nigeria for years now, I do miss it.
Even going to the Nigerian food stores here in South East London is one of the highlights of my life. The way my face lights up when I find imported items I never expected to see, the store owners are already used to my squeals of delight. One of the positives of Nigerian food is the fact that a lot of our food items are multiple uses in different dishes, so you don’t necessarily have to have dishes in mind to cook when you go shopping. The staples you must buy though are
Meats and/or fish
Oils – palm oil and vegetable oil
Some smoked fish variety, or at least crayfish
Soup Staple flours
These I consider the basics, and as your skill level increases, you build upon them, before you know it, your cupboard is filled with amazing sights, smells, and textures from Nigeria.
More details to be added soon…….