Sunday, July 16, 2017

Tasty dishes in Lagos , Nigeria

Pounded yam and friends : vegetable and palm kernel soups

 Hello readers, its been a few weeks since my last post. A quick trip to Lagos, Nigeria last week definitely presented the perfect opportunity to explore new tasty dishes. I ate soo much on this trip i fell over while stuffing my face at one of the restaurants. Scroll down for more revelations ( i still think my plastic chair had a defect).  My plan is to split my time in Lagos into 2 different blog posts. One for more affordable priced restaurants and another for slighly more moderately priced settings. This blog post will focus on the former  .

 Delta Pot 
 A friend suggested a restaurant called Delta pot that specialises in southern Nigerian cooking or more specifically dishes from the delta region. Banga soups made from palm kernels, Afang soups made from okazi and water leafs, Oha soup made from oha leaves and local spices, you name it, they have it. The restaurant's based in Lekki phase 1, Emmanuel abimbola cole street which was just perfect as it was near my aunts. The decor was functional, with adequate lighting if you seat next to the windows. I have to say though that more lighting might be required if you only manage to grab a seat by the till. Its just a tad dark in that corner. I only highlight this because feasting needs to be done by both the eyes and mouth. You will definitely understand this when your eye sets on the glorious Banga soup hosting a huge portion of catfish. The palm kernel broth, herbs, banga  spices ( not sure if they used bitter leaves) and dried shrimps gives an aroma thats to die for. The starch based accompaniment e.g pounded yam and the thick textured soup coupled with some of the softest catfish you would ever taste was a match made in heaven. The dish set me back just in excess of 3000 Naira ( around £7)
Heavenly Palm kernel broth based soup : Banga Soup
  The other dish we ordered was the Afang soup made with okazi and water leaves, stockfish pieces and chunks of meat. A flavorful dish as well. The dish was around 2000 Naira  ( about £5)
Flavourful Okazi and water leaf soup
 
Delta pot restaurant
    Grindgrill Cafe
 The next restaurant on my list, Grindgrill Cafe is also based in Lekki phase one, 27 Fola Osibo street to be exact. This find was courtesy of my Lagos foodie twin, Lolade. We went on a miserably rainy night , but the food more than made up for the grim weather. One of the things i loved about Grindgrill was their extensive menu. Grilled Catfish, Tilapia fish, Croaker ( single to extra Large),  giant Prawns, Lamb chops, Pork chops, ribeye steaks, chicken and prawn kebabs, etc. You name it, they grill it. They also had a selection of usual Nigerian dishes such Vegetable stews , plantain, yams, goat meat in pepper soup etc and finger foods such as peppered snails and gizzard, chicken wings and asun ( roast meat). For starters we ordered the finger foods such as peppered snails (3,000 Naira :about £6 ) with a firm but slightly rubbery texture. The giant african snail, wipe out pictures of escargots from your minds, was immersed in a delicious onion and pepper sauce that formed a massive part of the snails taste profile. The other starter we ordered was a plantain ( think fried bananas ) and gizzard combination that really worked the tastebuds.  The slight sweetness of the plantains, richness of the meaty chicken gizzard and spiciness of the peppers really makes this dish a powerhouse of flavours. Once you start munching, you feel compelled to swallow it all up. This finger food set us back about 1000 Naira (about £2)  
Giant snails garnished with onions, peppers and spices
   
Powerhouse of flavours : peppered plantain and gizzard
  The two mains we ordered was a fresh delicious spicy catfish and some grilled pork chops. The catfish was apparently happily swimming at the back of the restaurant prior to being grilled an hour earlier according to our waiter, so we knew to expect something fresh and tasty. When the catfish arrived and the first bite went in, i shed a quick tear , thanked the Gods and slowly took my time savouring each part of the fish. Lolade's friend arrived by this time and almost wanted to stick his fork into my piece of heaven on a plate. Lets just say it didnt happen. That precious was mine and mine alone. I did share with Lolade however as you can see from the pictures below. Never bite the hands that feed you and she shares quite a bit, so i was willing to make concessions. The grilled Catfish came up to 3,500 Naira ( £ 7  - £ 8 )
My precious : Grilled Catfish
 
Catfish heaven
  The other dish we had was there grilled pork ribs. They were juicy with hints of the coal they used to grill creating a mini foodie masterpiece, however we were fully stuffed by the time we had a bite or two. The grilled pork chops came up to 2,500 Naira ( about £5 - £6 ) 
Juicy Pork chops
 
Grindgrill Cafe
  I am defintely going back to Grindgrill in august. Yep, it was that good. Compliments to the chef.        

Chorppytoz chop house 

I met up with some friends i hadnt seen in 2 decades at a sea food restaurant on Lagos Island's Catholic mission street. If you're looking for that local nigerian restaurant feel, this definitely has it in terms of decor and ambience. We went to the back of the restaurant and sat down on some plastic chairs and table cracking jokes while our food got ready.
chorppytoz Lagos Island restaurant
  We ordered their Bakassi ( fish , crab and chips ) which was about 2,150 Naira (£4 - £5),  a fish, crab and potato peppersoup for (£4 - £5) and fish and crabs for ....yes you guessed, the same.
Fish, crab and potatoes pepper soup
  
Fish , crab and chips
  The dishes were tasty , with a significant part of our time or my time spent cracking the crabs. On finishing my meal, i felt my chair sink slowly but my brain wasnt fast enough to decipher what was happening. The legs of the chair cracked and i fell on my back at which point the table followed suit...and my drinks asked to join in. Funnily enough, i would have laughed if it happened to someone else, but i have to say that my friends didnt crack up. Either that or they are better humans than i. The restaurant replaced my drinks, so good on them i say.  There was music blasting out into the courtyard , so ambience wise this is a decent place to hang out in groups.  Would like to say thanks to the boys for getting my meal. Very nice of you fellas. 
Mini High school reunion.
  Thanks to my childhood Nigerian foodie and whisky friend, Lolade. Quite a good chunk of my times always spent in Lagos eating Suya ( spicy roast meat : dont ask what meat ) bought from glover court washed down with her bottle of whiskies.
Glover court Suya
 
Glover court Suya
 
Thanks L
  Food and friends aside, most importantly it was nice spending time in Lagos with my granma and family. My grans tasty dishes definitely played a part in my love of food :). Managed to find a pic from a few years ago. Her fishs stew definitely the best 

Granma cooking
There goes the end of my Lagos cheap bites. Hope you enjoyed it and will post within a week. If you have any ideas of restaurants i need to check out in Lagos, let me know and i will.                                                                                         O D A B O      
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