The Nigerian Edikang Ikong soup or simply Vegetable Soup is native to the Efiks, people from Akwa Ibom and Cross River states of Nigeria. It is a general notion that the Edikang Ikong soup is very nutritious and this is very much so. Prepared with a generous quantity of pumpkin leaves and water leaves, this Nigerian soup recipe is nourishing in every sense of the word.
• 1kg Pumpkin leaves
• 500g Water leaves
• 600g Beef, Kanda, shaki and Dry fish
• Pepper, Salt and ground Crayfish: to taste
• 200ml Palm oil
• Periwinkle – 1 cup
• 2 medium bulbs onions
• 2-3 Stock cubes
Alternative vegetables for those who cannot buy water leaves and pumpkin leaves, use the following to replace the classic Nigerian vegetables for this soup:
• 1kg Normal Frozen Spinach
• 200g Ground Frozen Spinach
• 250g Lamb’s Lettuce (Canonigos in Spanish)
1. Wash and cut the pumpkin and water leaves into tiny pieces. Put them in separate sieves to drain out all the water as much as possible.
2. Cut the Kanda into small pieces. Cook the beef, kanda and the dry fish with the 2 bulbs of diced onions and the 3 Maggi / Knorr cubes with as little quantity of water as possible.
3. When the meat is done, add a generous amount of palm oil, the crayfish and pepper and leave to boil for about 10 minutes. The palm oil serves as water in the Edikaikong soup. You should try as much as possible to make it the only liquid in the soup.
4. Add the periwinkle and water leaves and leave to cook for another 5 minutes. You may have to cook for less time at this stage so that the water leaves are not over-cooked.
5. Now add the pumpkin leaves and salt to taste. Stir the contents of the pot very well and turn off the heat. Cover the pot and leave to stand for about 5 minutes.
6. The Edikang Ikong soup is ready to be served with Garri (Eba), Semolina, Amala or Pounded Yam.