The eastern part of Nigeria is largely dominated by Igbo speaking citizens as they have large settlements here and like most tribes, they possess unique norms, traditions, culture, and food.
Igbo meals are very popular across the nation, as the region has been the birthplace of some of the country’s best known street food and snacks, including Akpa, Abacha, roast corn and more which are now eaten all over the nation.
Whether you are visiting the eastern region of the country on vacation or on business, street food can come in handy. Luckily for those of us who like streetside eatingJovago.com, Africa’s No. 1 online hotel booking service presents a guide to the 7 favorite street food in Eastern Nigerian.
Fondly referred to as “the Lion’s food” or “the king’s meal”, Okpa is a traditional Igbo dish made with flour from Bambara beans. A treasured delicacy, the cooking process is almost the same with moi-moi, however, the taste is unique as the paste is most times combined with vegetables like pumpkin leaves for added flavor before cooking.
Aki na ukwa
A mixture of coconut or palm nut (aki) and roasted or fried breadfruit seeds (ukwa), Aki na ukwa is one of the most balanced food combinations on the streets of eastern Nigeria. The snack is usually pack in conical-shaped transparent polythene packs and hawked around by peddlers.
Garden egg and groundnut sauce
Garden egg is one of the favourite fibre fruits enjoyed by the people as the plant thrives greatly in the region. More abundant during the rainy seasons, the garden egg, paired with a spicy groundnut sauce is a staple on the streets of igbo communities.
The groundnut sauce is usually made from a combination of calabash nutmeg, ashanti and dry pepper, making it a very hot and spicy dip. You mostly, find hawkers carrying the commodity on their heads while parading the streets or sitting on a roadside stall.
Abacha Mmiri, now popularly referred to as ‘Bobozee’ around the country, is one the best snack for a sunny day, hence the other nickname “Air Condition”.
Made of cooked cassava strips soaked in cold water and paired with coconut, the snack is not just filling, it is also very tasty and soothing in hot conditions.
Ugba/Abacha (African salad)
Popularly referred to as African salad. This dish is a mix of vegetables prepared with either Ugba (oil bean), Abacha (shredded cassava) or a combination of both, and other ingredient including afang(spinach), onions, meats, fish and palm oil.
The meal is a huge favorite of Igbo people as women selling them in deep trays or food buckets around the streets. It is however important to be careful when buying this meal as some the ingredient- especially the local potash known as akanwu– if not used appropriately can lead to food poisoning,