The Best Akamu Recipe For Nigerian Families
In this article, we’ll be teaching you the best akamu recipe that will help you avoid disgracing your village people when you try to make it at home.
A lot of Nigerians love to have Akamu for breakfast – especially during the weekends. It is best enjoyed with akara and bread or plantain and eggs. Whichever way you want to enjoy your akamu is up to you.
For the people that haven’t heard of the word, Akamu, before, let’s find out what it means. Ogi (or Akamu) is a Nigerian fermented cereal pudding made primarily of maize, sorghum, or millet. The English name is Pap.
The grains are traditionally steeped in water for up to three days before being wet-milled and sieved to remove the husks. After that, the filtered cereal is allowed to ferment for up to three days until it becomes sour. After that, it’s either boiled into a pap or cooked into a creamy pudding.
Akamu is known for its acidic flavor. In Nigeria, akamu is well-known for its advantages to nursing moms. It is thought to boost breastmilk production.
It is also suitable for children. Beginning at the age of four months. It is used as a baby’s weaning food. It is easily digested and gentle on a baby’s sensitive stomach. Akamu is frequently served hot. It can be eaten on its own or with other foods such as akara (bean balls), moin moin (bean cakes), fried plantains, and beans porridge.
Let’s further discuss the health benefits of akamu.
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Health benefits of akamu
Some of the other health benefits of akamu include:
Reduces the risk of blood pressure
Pap is high in potassium and low in sodium, making it an ideal diet for persons with high blood pressure, as well as those who want to keep their blood pressure in check or avoid developing hypertension.
Another benefit of eating potassium-rich foods like pap is that it helps to reduce the effects of sodium in the body while also reducing stress in blood vessel walls, protecting you from a variety of health problems that could arise.
Lowers LDL cholesterol
Low-Density Lipoprotein [LDL] and High-Density Lipoprotein [HDL] are the two predominant cholesterol forms in the body.
The former, LDL, is commonly referred to as “bad” cholesterol since having too much of it in your body can cause plaque to build in your artery walls, making blood circulation difficult. This could put an unnecessary burden on the heart, perhaps leading to high blood pressure, stroke, or heart attack.
On the bright side, pap contains a significant quantity of chromium, zinc, magnesium, and other nutrients that aid in the reduction of ‘bad’ LDL cholesterol levels in the body.
The chromium in pap has been shown to reduce LDL cholesterol levels and prevent the production of atherosclerotic plaques in the body.
To name a few benefits, this mineral has been associated to improved blood sugar levels, reduced risk of type 1 and type 2 diabetes, reduced depression, enhanced energy levels, and greater regeneration powers.
Again, the zinc and magnesium content in pap are thought to be beneficial in lowering LDL cholesterol levels in the body because they possess powerful capabilities.
Moderate calorie consumption, frequent physical activity [exercise], and quitting smoking are some of the best strategies to improve your ‘good’ HDL cholesterols and lower your ‘bad’ LDL cholesterols.
Highly beneficial for nursing mothers
Have you ever wondered why pap is considered one of the best foods for breastfeeding mothers?
Pap has a lot of water and a few other ingredients that help nursing mothers have an easy and enough flow of breast milk. It also aids in the recovery of strength after illness, not to mention the fact that it is a simple-to-digest food that is kind to the digestive system.
Good source of energy
Pap is a good source of carbohydrates, which is one of the nutrients your body needs to function properly.
Carbohydrate-rich meals like pap not only provide energy to your body, but they also improve brain clarity and speed up fat metabolism for energy.
It is easy to digest
Pap is one of the more easily digestible meals available. Raising the rate at which you urinate, allows your body to readily get rid of harmful materials and toxins.
Another advantage of eating readily digestible foods is that they put less strain on the digestive system, making them excellent for people recovering from illness.
In addition to the benefits listed above, those with digestive disorders such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), irritable bowel disease (IBD), or a sensitive stomach would benefit from readily digestible meals like pap because they are gentle on the digestive system and rarely cause problems.
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Boost the kidney’s health
The kidneys are one of the most important organs in the body, and any damage to this area can have serious consequences for the human body.
Some of the things that can impair this vital organ are uric acid, urea, pollutants, trash, and other hazardous chemicals.
The good news is that drinking pap can help you get rid of these chemicals by helping your body eliminate undesirable materials through urine. When you drink pap, you tend to urinate more.
Promotes healthy pregnancy
Folic acid is one of the required nutrients for a healthy pregnancy in women. A lack of this acid may cause underweight babies to be born or potentially cause neural tube problems in newborns.
On the bright side, pap is high in folic acid, making it a good choice for expecting mothers. Apart from that, you might be interested to know that the same pap stimulates the formation of breast milk after childbirth — such a nutritious food!
Good for babies and toddlers
Pap is a nutritious Nigerian dish for toddlers. In Nigeria, it is a favorite weaning dish for babies. It is not only cost-effective, and simple to prepare, and digest, but it is also quite nutritious for a growing youngster.
Brown pap is the most suitable for infants. Brown pap is made up of carbs, millet, and guinea corn, and it contains proteins, vitamins, and minerals that are essential for a baby’s growth and development.
Akamu recipe: Ingredients
Now that you know the health benefits of akamu, find out the ingredients needed for the perfect akamu recipe.
You will need:
- Wet Corn Starch (Akamu, Ogi or Pap)
- Water (Hot and Cold)
- Evaporated Milk (Peak Milk)
- Sugar (to taste)
What you need to know about choosing your ingredients
If you can’t find Akamu or create it from home, you can use corn starch (corn flour), but the sour flavor will be lost.
Peak Milk (evaporated) is the finest milk for akamu because it is creamy and has a distinct flavor that complements the sourness of akamu/ogi. Akamu does not like whole, semi-skimmed, or skimmed milk. Use baby milk when creating Akamu for your child.
To taste, add more sugar. Other sweeteners have never been utilized in Akamu. Newborns do not need sugar.
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Akamu recipe: Preparation
Use these steps to prepare akamu:
Step 1: In a large mixing bowl, place some lumps of akamu/ogi/pap. Because akamu rises during preparation, use a bowl large enough to hold the meal in its elevated position. If in doubt, choose a large bowl; over time, you’ll figure out what quantity fits comfortably in which bowl size.
Step 2: Crush the ogi lumps into very little pieces with a tablespoon.
Step 3: Mix in tiny amounts of chilled water until you get a medium consistency with no lumps. The goal here is to make the akamu as thick as possible. Check out the video below.
Step 4: Bring a pot of water to a boil. Make certain there will be enough water. It’s preferable to boil too much water than not enough.
Step 5: Stir the mixture thoroughly just before the water boils, as some of the ogi may have settled at the bottom of the dish. This is the main cause of lumps when you first start preparing it if you don’t stir it well.
Step 6: When the water is boiling, slowly pour it into the akamu bowl in a circular manner while stirring constantly. It’s critical to pour the hot water gently while stirring at the same time to avoid lumps.
Step 7: You should stop stirring once you notice the mixture is starting to set. Reduce the water flow.
Step 8: Set the pot aside and thoroughly whisk the pap. You can thin it out with more hot water if it’s too thick for you. However, take care not to let it become watery. Keep in mind that you’ll still need to use liquid evaporated milk.
Step 9: Stir in some sugar to taste and peak evaporated milk until everything is to your liking.
Voila! Your akamu is ready to be consumed.
Why your akamu ends up watery
Have you ever tried to prepare akamu, only to find out that you are not really the wife material you thought you were?
I’m sure you have, or not. If you’ve not, thumbs up you deserve an award. However, watery akamu is what no one wants to experience, so in order to avoid disappointing your entire village members, here’s what you need to know.
3 common reasons for watery pap
1: You didn’t pour nearly enough boiling water. Many people, out of fear, do not use enough hot water. The excellent science of akamu is that when you start adding hot water, the mixture will become watery before thickening.
So relax and make sure you have enough hot water.
2. When you’re trying to produce akamu, it’s not at room temperature. You took the akamu out of the fridge or freezer, combined it right away, and attempted to manufacture akamu.
If the akamu mixture is too cold, no amount of hot water will be enough to set the akamu. Bring your akamu out of the fridge the night before and keep it in the kitchen until you’re ready to prepare it in the morning.
Bring your akamu out of the freezer at least 24 hours before you plan to prepare the akamu. This will ensure that the akamu is at room temperature when you want to prepare it.
3. When the akamu was turned into corn, it came into contact with salt. The main foe of akamu is salt. The entire batch of akamu would be damaged if salt got into the akamu.
Now that you know the health benefits of akamu, and the best akamu recipe for you and your family, we hope to enjoy a decent breakfast in your home.