How to cook Nigerian Moi Moi
Moi Moi (also Moin Moin) is a great dish accessory in Nigeria. It is commonly seen accompanying Jollof Rice, Fried Rice, Fried Plantain, Custard, Akamu (Pap, Ogi) etc. It can even be eaten alone as a snack with a soft drink to wash it down.
Due to its popularity, Moi Moi is often served in parties, dinners and other special occasions.
- Beans (Brown/Black eyed) - 3 cigar cups | approx. 750g
- Bone Marrow / Eggs (3 pcs) / Corned beef (optional)
- Vegetable Oil - 3 cooking spoons
- Tatashe (or tinned tomato puree in the absence of this)
- Crayfish (1 handful)
- Fresh Pepper (If the tatashe is not hot enough)
- Onions – 3 medium sized bulbs
- Nutmeg (1 pc or 1 teaspoon of ground nutmeg)
- Salt to taste
- Seasoning – 3 Maggi/Knorr cubes
- Aluminium foil or
- Plastic Bowls or
- Uma Leaves(Thaumatococcus Daniellii)
Tools I used
- Cooker: Buy it in USA | in UK
- Deep Pot: Buy it in USA | in UK
- Spatula: Buy it in USA | in UK
- Chopping board: Buy it in USA | in UK
- Blender: Buy it in USA | in UK
- Knives: Buy it in USA | in UK
Before you cook Moi Moi
About three hours before cooking the moi moi, soak and wash the beans to remove the coat. When the entire coat has been removed, place the beans in a bowl and pour enough water to cover it. Leave to soak for three hours. This is so that the best consistency will be achieved when you blend the beans.
It is advisable to use one of eggs, bone marrow or corned beef, not the three at the same time. If you will use eggs, cook till hard boiled, cut into small pieces and set aside. If you prefer bone marrow, cook it with salt and Maggi / Knorr cubes. If it is corned beef you will go for, open the can and separate the beef into small lumps.
Now go ahead and prepare the moi moi containers.
Wash the tatashe, onions, nutmeg, red pepper, crayfish and set aside. Ensure to remove the tatashe seeds as they have a tendency to give meals a bitter taste.
Now that the beans is soaked (the bean seed is tender when you pinch it), it is time to blend it. It is very important that you use a very good blender for this purpose. The taste and feel of your Moi Moi depends so much on the consistency of the blend. If in doubt, put a small quantity of bean seeds in your home blender and grind to the best of its ability using as small quantity of water as possible. Feel the resulting paste with your fingers and if you notice any tiny pieces at all, then the blender is not good for Moi Moi. At this time, you may consider using the commercial heavy duty mills at your local market if you are in Nigeria. Yes, you have your health and hygiene concerns but most of the mill operators actually keep their mills clean. And they let you bring your own water and containers. So there you go!
Blend the beans, tatashe, onions, crayfish, pepper and nutmeg together and put in a big enough bowl.
Prepare about half a litre of warm water. This will be used in mixing the moi moi. You do not want to use hot water for this purpose as it may cause the mix to be lumpy.
Slowly add the warm water and stir the mixture at the same time. When you have achieved medium consistency, add salt to taste, 3 cooking spoons of vegetable oil, bone marrow stock (if this is what you have chosen to add to your moi moi) and Maggi / Knorr cubes.
Stir the mixture very well and start putting the mix in your choice of containers by following the details at How to Use the Moi Moi Containers. Now is the time to add one egg piece per bowl/ aluminium foil/ uma wrap. The corned beef pieces should be added this way too if chosen.
Note: Moi Moi is one of the Nigerian food recipes that is prepared cold. All the mixing and adding of ingredients is done off the stove. That is to say, once you start cooking, there is no going back! You cannot decide to add more salt or seasoning or a new ingredient later. So getting it right at the mixing stage is very important.
Pad the base of a big pot and set the moi moi containers in the pot, add a small quantity of boiling water and start cooking.
Add as small quantity of water as possible at a time while cooking the Moi Moi as detailed in preparation and use of moi moi containers so that the moi moi will not become watery when done. This is the case especially when using aluminium foil or uma leaves.
The length of time you will cook your Moi Moi depends on the quantity and the Moi Moi container you used.
The Moi Moi that gets done quickest is the one wrapped in Uma or Banana leaves, followed by Moi Moi wrapped in aluminum foils then the one that takes the most time is Moi Moi cooked in aluminium or plastic plates.
But whatever Moi Moi container you use, it is advisable to cook your Moi Moi for at least 1 hour, before checking it. Confirm that it is done by putting a knife through it, if the knife is stained with Moi Moi paste, then the Moi Moi is not done, but if the knife just has a slight smear of Moi Moi, then it's done. Also, when you cut through the Moi Moi, the insides will be set and not watery.
If you are cooking a few wraps of Moi Moi in a small pot on high heat, then it will only take about 45 minutes to get done while when you are cooking a large pot of Moi Moi, it will definitely take more than one hour.
Serve with chilled fruit juice, or coconut juice.