HAPPY WORLD JOLLOF RICE DAY!
Can you imagine this is an actual day? I feel like it needs to be a world-wide public holiday with no work and no school because we all know that jollof rice deserves that much respect! In honor of this day, I have put together a list of some of my favorite must try jollof recipes from a variety of food bloggers because there’s more than one way to make this awesome dish.
For those new to West African cuisine, jollof rice, also called Benachin, is a one-pot dish made with a combination of blended tomatoes, onions, peppers, spices and rice. The dish takes on different tastes depending on how it is prepared but one thing is certain: regardless of the method jollof is bae.
Native Jollof Rice
There’s something mind-blowing about this rich, palm oil-flavored recipe that makes it one of the tastiest ways to prepare jollof rice. Also known as Iwuk Edesi by the Effik people of South Eastern Nigeria, it is made with smoked fish and seasoned with crayfish. I especially love how Sisi Yemmie reproduced this recipe with bits of kpomo (cow skin) and smoked prawns to top it off.
Party Jollof Rice
If there was an award for the king jollof of all jollof recipes, party jollof rice would snatch it every single year. It is called party jollof because it is the recipe used for every Nigerian party, where there can be as many as 1000 guests. Growing up, I remember watching grown men and women hustle and fight to get a plate of party jollof. They would get visibly upset if the server came back with the worst news – jollof is finished.
This key to this recipe lies in the simplicity of its ingredients and the smoky flavor of the finished product. I’m not going to lie, I improved my party jollof game because of Dooney’s Kitchen. Before then, I had been adding and removing some ingredients and it never turned out quite right. But with her detailed explanations, I became a pro party jollof maker – thanks Dooney!
Coconut Jollof Rice
The first time I heard of using coconut water/milk/oil/shavings to make jollof rice, I was confused and a bit worried about the mental state of the person who suggested it. But my motto is, you never really know till you try it, and I’m so glad I tried this recipe! For someone who never really liked coconut, it has worked it’s way up in the list of favorite things to cook with. The added coconut water or milk and coconut oil gives the rice a unique flavor that will have you going back for seconds. Or if you’re like me, thirds.
Oven Baked Jollof Rice
Maybe it’s just me, but when something is cooked in the oven instead of over the stove, the recipe seems so much easier and less tedious. That’s exactly what I think of this oven baked jollof rice recipe by Immaculate Bites. Once you’ve combined all your ingredients and put them in the oven, it’s simply a waiting game till the rice is completely cooked. Now you can cook your jollof rice and attend to other things without having to watch it like a hawk.
Ghanaian Jollof Rice
It’s no secret that there’s a (somewhat unhealthy) rivalry between Nigeria and Ghana over who’s jollof rice is better. Every time jollof rice is mentioned on social media, you can trust both parties to lay hold of their claim to the jollof championship. Regardless, the Ghanaian method to preparing jollof rice is one of my favorite ways to make the dish. In fact, it’s the only way I knew how to make jollof rice growing up! Shhh, don’t tell my countrymen. The major difference between Nigeria and Ghana’s jollof preparation method is that Nigerians pre-cook the rice before adding it to the jollof stew to finish cooking, while Ghanaian cook the rice in the stew from the very beginning. It may not seem like such a major difference, but it yields a slightly different taste.
Have you tried any of these recipes? Which one is your favorite? Leave a comment and let me know.
Have an awesome jollof day!