Catfish pepper soup is one of the African cuisines that stands out due to its spiciness and delicious taste. An excellent soup that many Africans love, especially Nigerians. It is specially served at social gatherings like birthdays, restaurants, beach parties, and some other occasions.
I love the spiciness of pepper soup and how I can drink the soup, Lol. The aroma of the soup is irresistible; no wonder people recommend it for any sick person that doesn’t have an appetite for food. It has a great way of increasing one’s desire to eat.
Read also: How to cook yam porridge with vegetable
Do you even need pepper soup?
Everyone needs this soup. The main ingredient in this soup is the catfish and the incredible herb spices, and it also has peppery fish broth, herbs, spices, and some condiments that are very good for us.
The soup’s herb spices can help cure illnesses like colds and coughs and are also very effective for curing inflammatory disorders. Herb or traditional condiments such as calabash or African nutmeg, grains of Selim (Uda- Igbo name), Uziza seed, alligator pepper, ginger, and Umilo seed are used. They are unique condiments that are very flavourful and can be peppery. Grind them together into a fine powder and use it as a spice for your soup. If you can’t get hold of these traditional spices, you can get a pre-packed pepper soup spice at the grocery store; it will also turn out great.
Read also: How to use mushrooms in cooking.
Can I replace catfish with meat for my pepper soup?
Yes, meat is also a good protein food for pepper soup. You can use meats like assorted meat, goat meat, dried steak, and lamb. You can also use chicken, mushrooms, or any fish.
For this recipe, I used catfish, and this is because I love the unique aroma that comes with using catfish for pepper soup; I also love using goat meat any time I feel like switching things up a little. You can also use any other protein food for your pepper soup.
Add some leafy green like mint, scent leaves, Uziza leaves, pumpkins, bitter leaves, or parsley. It will enhance the flavor and also make it more nutritious.
The recipe I used for making my Catfish pepper soup are;
Catfish – 1kg
Pepper soup spice mix- 2 tsp
Unripe plantain ( I added unripe plantain to make it a one-pot meal. It is optional)- 3
Red habanero peppers – 2
Tomatoes- 3 plum tomatoes
Ginger and garlic
Curry and Thyme- ½ teaspoon each
Grounded black pepper- 1 tsp
Onions – 1 medium bulb
Seasoning cubes- 2
Dried crayfish- 2 tbsp
Scent leaves- sliced, 2 tbsp
Water- 4 cups
Salt to taste
- Put your well-cleaned catfish ( you can use salt, lime, or lemon to reduce the sliminess) in a pot and marinate it with salt, seasoning cube, black pepper, curry, Thyme, and chopped onions.
- Add little water (half a cup) for the ingredients to easily penetrate the catfish. Please put it on heat and allow it to cook on low-medium heat for 5 minutes.
- Grate your ginger and garlic into the mixture on heat as it cooks.
- Blend your tomatoes, crayfish, bell peppers, and onions and set aside.
- Add pepper soup spice, blended tomato mixture, and more water (about 2 cups) to the catfish mixture on heat and leave it to cook for 3 minutes.
- Add your unripe plantain (cut each into cubes or four equal sizes) to the pepper soup mixture on heat and leave to cook for 10 minutes.
- Finally, add your sliced scent leaves to the pepper soup, and leave it to cook for another 2 minutes.
- Remove from heat. Serve it hot and enjoy.
I chose not to use too many peppers for this pepper soup recipe even though it was still a little peppery. Feel free to increase the number of your peppers if you wish to.
Adding unripe plantain to the soup is optional; you can also cook it without the unripe plantain or use other starchy food like potato or yam for your own. As I said earlier, it makes the soup a one-pot meal and adds an extra flavor to your soup. So feel free to try different ones; remember that there are no complex rules when it comes to cooking. You can also cook the unripe plantain separately as a side dish for your pepper soup instead of adding them directly.
I hope you will try this recipe. Let me know what you feel about it in the comments. Thank you!