Labelle Cuisine: Recipes to Sing About
    by Patti LaBelle

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Saturday, August 12, 2006

Ila Alasepo
For biodun 'cause she asked
  1. Okra
  2. Ugwu Leaves(Shreded into small bits)
  3. Bitter leaf (Washed) (Just a little)
  4. Palm Oil
  5. Ata rodo (Scotch bonnet peppers)
  6. Shombo (Cayenne peppers)
  7. Onions
  8. Meat
  9. Meat Stock
  10. Iru (Locust bean paste)
  11. Seasoning (knorr or maggi cubes)
  12. Salt to taste
Condiments (optional)
  • Dried Catfish
  • Dried Crayfish
  • Jumbo Prawns
  • Ponmo (cubed)
  • Snails (washed and cubed)
  • Prawns
Blend the atarodo , shombo and the onions into a rough paste. It should look like it was ground on a grinding stone. Boil the meat and put the stock in a Large Saucepan. Add water (depending on the quantity of okra) , add the blended pepper and bring to boil. Wash the dried fish in boiling water, and add it along with all the other condiments except the ugwu, bitterleaf and palm oil. Add seasoning and salt to taste. Bring it all to boil , allow it to simmer for a few minutes then add the palm oil, locust bean paste and bitter leaf. Allow the mixture to boil until the palmoil blends into the mixture and you can only see traces of it . Wash and add the ugwu, grate the okra and add it after a few minutes. Stir the mixture until it begins to boil and the okra has a light drawy consistency if the soup is too thick add a little water to it . Let it simmer for about two mins and its ready to serve.
It's especially nice with eba,amala, fufu or pounded yam.

Thursday, August 10, 2006


Finally, the pics are here!

A) Garlic-like seeds.

B) Tiny seeds which are got from big seed when cracked.

C) Long-stemmed seeds, which you also crack open.

Yea I know they look like creepy insects!

Monday, July 17, 2006

Making Puff Puff by Onada!

Puff Puff Ingredients (for approx 15 puff puff balls)

1. 2 cups of Flour.
2. 2 cups of water (1 Cup can be substituted with Milk).
3. 1 teaspoon of quick rising yeast.
4. As much sugar as you like.
5. (1 egg can also be added).

You'll need to mix in all ingredients till it’s got a thick consistency. Make sure you taste it so you know if it’s sweet enough for you.

Don’t forget to add your teaspoon of yeast and mix it all till its smooth and fluffy.
If you don’t have any idea when that will be, try mixing it in 100 full circles and you should be fine. At this point, put it in a plastic container and cover with foil and leave it to rise either in the fridge or on the counter top (I've found it easier to make cold puff puff mixture into nice round balls using a tablespoon).
After a few hours your puff puff should have risen to about twice the size of the original mixture or more and will be very sticky and will draw (kinda like okra soup)

Heat up some oil and fry till golden brown.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Peppersoup from scratch

  1. Freshly boiled and seasoned Meat/Chicken/Fish depending on what you are making.
  2. Pepper soup seeds - (2) Big ones you crack open, (1) garlic-ike seed and (2) long black thin ginger-spice with seeds inside (will try and get pictures).
  3. Meat/chicken/fish water (from the boiled meat).
  4. 1 Tomato (optional).
  5. 1/2 Onion (optional).
  6. Pepper (ata rodo) or ground pepper.
  7. Pepper soup seasoning/any seasoning cubes.
- Pour some or all of the meat water (depending on your desired quantity) into a blender and crack open the two big pepper soup seeds and add to the water. Also add the garlic-like seed. Make sure the blender is filled up to a point where you know it wont spill whilst blending.
- Blend these together (you will be able to tell the seeds have blended because the water turns creamy whit).
- Sieve this blended meat water on to your meat (this is sieved so that the bits and peels of the seeds are seperated from the actual mix) in a pot.
- Cook this until you can tell it is cooked and in the process add the seeds in the two long black spices into the pot while the soup is cooking. (These long spices are usually hard to crack so it is advisable to soak them in hot water to soften and crack them open with a wooden spoon to get the tiny black seeds out).
- Add some pepper and crayfish to your taste.
- Also add your peppersoup cubes or seasoning cubes and let it cook till you get a good flavour.

NOTE - all the seeds are required in order to get the right taste. You can also use ready-made pepper soup powder as an alternative. Another alternative is the stew-y peppersoup where you will need pepper, tomatoes and onions. These are blended and added into the pot at first as though you were cooking stew and then the above step by step procedure is also followed. You add your meat water to the blended tomatoes/pepper to make your peppersoup.
One's discretion is used in determining the ratio of pepper/tomatoes to meat water.

To email me your recipe or for any questions or comments, please email aramide (at) gmail (dot) com

Saturday, July 08, 2006

HERB & SPICE 101 by MariPossa

(Part 1)

I extracted this from the Spice Herb Encyclopedia and narrowed it down to the traditional and ethnic uses and ideas to best explain how to impellent it in your cooking.

Allspice - also known as "pimento", "pimiento" is Spanish for pepper. Allspice is used in Jamaican jerk seasoning and in Jamaican soups, stews, and curries. It also is used in pickling spice, spiced tea mixes, cakes, cookies, and pies. Food producers use it in ketchup, pickles, and sausages.

IDEAS: Try mixing 1/4 teaspoon ground Allspice with 2 pounds of ground beef to give a unique flavor to meatloaf or hamburgers. Or, add 1 teaspoon of ground Allspice to angel food or white cake mix for a sensational spicy flavor.

Anise Seed - Europeans use Anise in cakes, cookies, and sweet breads. In the Middle East and India, it is used in soups and stews. Its licorice like flavor is popular in candies and Anise oil is used in liqueurs.

IDEAS: Give fish and shellfish a wonderful Mediterranean flavor by adding Anise Seed to seafood stews. Make a quick sauce for grilled fish by combining melted butter, toasted Anise Seed, lemon juice, and minced green onion.

Arrowroot - Arrowroot is used as a thickening agent for sauces, fruit pie fillings and glazes, and puddings.

IDEAS: Arrowroot mixtures thicken at a lower temperature than mixtures made with flour or cornstarch. Mix Arrowroot with cool liquids before adding hot liquids, then cook until mixture thickens. Remove immediately to prevent mixture from thinning. Two teaspoons of Arrowroot can be substituted for 1 tablespoon of cornstarch. One teaspoon of Arrowroot can be substituted for 1 tablespoon of flour. Arrowroot makes clear, shimmering fruit gels and prevents ice crystals from forming in homemade ice cream.

Basil, Sweet - Basil is widely used in Italian cuisine and is often paired with tomatoes. It is also used in Thai cooking. The herb complements meat, vegetables, cheese, and egg dishes.

IDEAS: Basil tastes great in tomato and pasta dishes but it is also gives a sweet scented, minty aroma when crumbled over baked chicken, lamb, or fish. It blends well with garlic, thyme, and oregano. Crush dried leaves with your hand or in a mortar and pestle to release the herb's flavor. Start with 1/2 teaspoon for 4 servings; add more to taste.

Bay Leaves - Bay Leaves, a staple in American kitchens, are used in soups, stews, meat and vegetable dishes. The leaves also flavor classic French dishes such as bouillabaisse and bouillon.

IDEAS: The Bay Leaf is useful in hearty, home-style cooking. When you are making bean, split pea and vegetable soups, meat stews, spaghetti sauce, and chili, a Bay leaf can be added for a more pungent flavor. Alternate whole Bay Leaves with meat, seafood, or vegetables on skewers before cooking. Be sure to remove Bay Leaves before eating a dish that has finished cooking. The whole leaves are used to impart flavor only and are bitter and hard to chew.

Caraway Seed - Caraway Seed is a common flavoring for many kinds of rye bread. It is also used to flavor sauerkraut, sausage, cheese, cabbage, and soups.

IDEAS: For enhanced flavor, lightly toast Caraway Seed before use in cheese dishes or potato salad. Caraway Seed is great for use in sauerkraut, soups, and stews; add Caraway in the last 15 minutes of cooking for best flavor. Sprinkle Caraway Seed lightly over spice cakes before baking. Mix 1/4 cup melted butter with 1 to 2 teaspoons Caraway Seed; spread on French bread or pour over green beans.

Cardamom - In India Cardamom is traditionally used in curry blends, and in Scandinavian countries it is commonly added to breads; however, most of the world's Cardamom crop is used in Arabic countries as a flavoring for coffee.

IDEAS: A small amount of Cardamom will add a tempting flavor to coffee cake, Danish pastry, specialty breads, and apple pie. Try Cardamom the Arabic way and add a little to your ground coffee before brewing, then sweeten and top with cream.

Cayenne Pepper - Cayenne Pepper is traditionally used in Mexican and Italian cooking. Has little aroma, but it is extremely hot to taste.

IDEAS: Try adding Cayenne Pepper to salsa, avocado dip, taco, and enchilada sauces for extra zesty flavor. You can heat up a barbecue sauce or meat marinade with a shake of Cayenne Pepper. Spice up your tartar sauce or vegetable dips and dressings with a pinch of Cayenne Pepper. You can make SouthoftheBorder omelets with tomatoes, onions, peppers, and a pinch of Cayenne Pepper added to the eggs.

Celery Seed - Celery or as the ancients called it "smallage" has been used as a medicine since the time of the Greeks. In the Middle Ages, it was discovered that cultivation produced a much superior plant. At that time people began to use it more widely as a vegetable. It was not until the 19th century that the seeds were used in recipes, appearing first in pickling recipes.

IDEAS: Celery Seed is useful for adding a celery flavor to foods when the "crunch" of celery is not desired. Stir some into clam, potato, or other creamy soups. Add a pinch to blue cheese dressings and spoon the dressing over ripe tomatoes.

Chervil - Chervil is one of the classic components of the popular French herb blend, fines herbs. The leaves of this aromatic and sweet herb bear a slight resemblance to parsley; however, the flavor is more distinctive with a trace of anise.

IDEAS: Chervil brings out the flavor of other herbs. Stir it into scrambled eggs or cheese and ham omelets. Chervil is useful for adding color and flavor to creamy dressings for pasta and potato salads. Add it to butter sauced mushrooms and serve over grilled steak or chicken breasts. Crush Chervil in your hand or with a mortar and pestle before use.

Chives - Chives are one of the herbs used in fines herbes, a traditional French herb blend. They also are great as a garnish.
Chives have a mild, onionlike flavor, with a hint of garlic.

IDEAS: Chives make an attractive garnish for many savory foods. With a delicate onion flavor, Chives won't overpower the flavor of fish. Add Chives at the last moment to hot foods, since heat lessens their flavor.

Cilantro - Cilantro is traditionally used in Middle Eastern, Mexican, and Asian cooking.
Cilantro's taste is a fragrant mix of parsley and citrus.

IDEAS: Before it is used, Cilantro should be crushed, either by hand or with a mortar and pestle. Cilantro is a perfect addition to Mexican dishes; add Cilantro to salsas and bean dips. Mix crushed Cilantro into sour cream and use it as a topping for chili, tacos, or enchiladas. Sprinkle Cilantro over stirfried vegetables for color and Asian flavor. Add Cilantro to sesameginger dressing when making Chinese chicken salad.

Cinnamon - Before it is used, Cilantro should be crushed, either by hand or with a mortar and pestle. Cilantro is a perfect addition to Mexican dishes; add Cilantro to salsas and bean dips. Mix crushed Cilantro into sour cream and use it as a topping for chili, tacos, or enchiladas. Sprinkle Cilantro over stirfried vegetables for color and Asian flavor. Add Cilantro to sesameginger dressing when making Chinese chicken salad.

IDEAS: For a fragrant pilaf, cook rice in Cinnamon flavored broth and stir in chopped dried fruit and toasted nuts. The sweetspicy flavor of Cinnamon enhances the taste of vegetables and fruits. Cinnamon is a perfect partner for chocolate; use it in any chocolate dessert or drink. It is used to mellow the tartness of apple pie. Ground Cinnamon should not be added to boiling liquids; the liquid may become stringy and the Cinnamon will lose flavor.

Cloves - Cloves are used in spice cookies and cakes. Much of the world crop is used in Indonesia for Clove cigarettes, called "kreteks".

IDEAS: Ground Cloves add spicy depth to gingerbread, cookies, applesauce, muffins, cakes, and other sweets. It's a secret ingredient in barbecue and cocktail sauces. Blend Ground Cloves with maple syrup and drizzle over cooked sweet potatos and winter squash. Add a few Whole Cloves to bean and split pea soups (remove before serving). Eugenol (clove oil) will collect and cake in the container when Cloves are stored in a warm place.

Coriander - Coriander is used in Indian curries, gin, American cigarettes, and sausages.
Coriander has a mild, distinctive taste similar to a blend of lemon and sage.

IDEAS: Coriander is not interchangable with cilantro, although they are from the same plant. Ground Coriander seed is traditional in desserts and sweet pastries as well as in curries, meat, and seafood dishes with South American, Indian, Mediterranean, and African origins. Add it to stews and marinades for a Mediterranean flavor.

Cream of Tartar - Cream of Tartar is used to stabilize egg white foams. It is also a major ingredient in baking powder. Cream of Tartar has no aroma and has an acidic flavor.

IDEAS: For craft dough, mix together 2 cups flour, 1 cup salt, and 2 tablespoons Cream of Tartar in a pan. Stir in 2 cups water, 1 tablespoon oil, and a few drops of food coloring. Cook and stir over medium heat until it forms a ball. Cool and store in a plastic bag until ready to use. Use 1/8 teaspoon per egg white to make souffles, meringues, angel food, chiffon cakes, and candy.

Cumin - Cumin is frequently used in Mexican dishes such as chili con carne and hot tamales. Cumin has a distinctive, slightly bitter yet warm flavor.

IDEAS: For a change of pace, try ground Cumin added to tangy lime or lemon based marinades for chicken, turkey, lamb, and pork. Or, add Cumin to chili, spicy meat stews, barbecue marinades, and sauces. Stir toasted Cumin into corn muffin batter to create an easy southoftheborder accent. Heat Cumin and garlic in olive oil and drizzle over cooked vegetables or potatoes. Ground Cumin is stronger than whole seeds. The Cumin flavor is accentuated by toasting.

Curry Powder - Curry Powder is a blend of many spices and is used widely in savory dishes throughout India and Southeast Asia.

IDEAS: For a quick dip to complement fruit and vegetable sticks, blend sour cream or yogurt with Curry Powder, marmalade, and thyme. Try adding Curry Powder to deviled eggs and egg salads. You can easily make an East Indian marinade for chicken or lamb with Curry Powder, yogurt, lime or lemon juice, and garlic.

Dill Seed and Weed - Dill Seed and Weed are widely used in pickling as well as in German, Russian, and Scandinavian dishes.
The Dill Seed flavor is clean, pungent, and reminiscent of caraway. Dill Weed has a similar but mellower and fresher flavor.

IDEAS: Dill Seed and Dill Weed are not good substitutions for each other. The seed has a camphorous, slightly bitter flavor, and the weed has a delicate flavor. Dill Seed is good sprinkled over casseroles before baking and used in salad dressings. Dill Weed, with its delicate flavor, enhances fish, shellfish, vegatables, and dips.

Fennel Seed - Fennel goes well with fish and is used in Italian sausages and some curry powder mixes.
Fennel has an anise like flavor but is more aromatic, sweeter and less pungent.

IDEAS: Toasting Fennel Seeds accentuates their flavor. Fennel Seed added to meatballs or meat loaf gives an authentic Italian flavor. Saute Fennel Seed with sliced peppers, onion, and sausage for a quick pasta sauce.

Garlic - Garlic is used in cuisines throughout the world. It is indispensible in Chinese, Italian, and Mexican foods.

IDEAS: Use Minced Garlic or Garlic Chips in pasta sauces, stews, and soups. Mix with oil and vinegar and Italian spices to make salad dressing. Garlic Powder can be used in marinades, or mixed with herbs and rubbed into poultry, pork, or beef before cooking.

Ginger - Ginger is used in gingerbread, ginger ale, gingersnaps, and Asian dishes.
Ginger has a slightly biting and hot note. Its aroma is rich, sweet, warm, and woody.
IDEAS: Since ginger is a fibrous root, at times fibers may get into the manufactured product. Crystallized Ginger can replace fresh Ginger. Wash off the sugar first if desired when preparing a savory dish.

Horseradish - Its most common use is as a condiment for roast beef, fish, and oysters.
Hot and pungent .

IDEAS: Mix Spice Islands Horseradish into whipped cream or sour cream for a classic roast beef topping. Add Horseradish to dressings, mayonnaise, and other condiments for zippier salads, sandwiches, and dips. Blend Horseradish into tomatobased cocktail sauce for a seafood or barbecue sauce for grilled meats.

Juniper Berries - Juniper Berries are used in Northern Europe and the United States in marinades, roast pork, and sauerkraut. They enhance meat, stuffings, sausages, stews, and soups. Juniper Berries have a bittersweet aroma.

IDEAS: Crush Juniper Berries before using. Use them in marinades for game, beef, or pork.

Monday, July 03, 2006


What does everyone think about having a template for recipes so they're not all over the place? Does anyone have a template style or something? Cos I've written out my recipes already. Any more tips, etc?

Monday, June 19, 2006


Ermm it took me a while to get this running (sorry guys!) working like a snail right now. Who has any ideas on the template, if you think I should make any changes or you want to add anything. Let me know so we can get cracking and start adding recipes. Right now the template is unfinished but just so you know it exists!


PLS Invite peeps...

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