Jollof Rice

Jollof Rice

 Oya Abeo founder Samiat Salami shared some of her favorite Nigerian recipes using Oaktown Spice Shop spices. Oya Abeo creates beautiful, handcrafted home goods to celebrate indigenous Nigerian artisan techniques at home and on a global stage while promoting equity and sustainability.

Jollof rice is a spicy, smoky staple of Nigerian cuisine. For extra kick, it can be served with Ata Din Din (Pepper Sauce). Serve with meat or veggies of your choice. Jollof goes nicely with stewed chicken and coleslaw. 

Serves 4

2 red onions, chopped, divided (half for the blender, and half for finishing the sauce)
2 tomatoes, chopped
1 (6 ounce) can organic Italian tomato paste
2 cloves garlic, peeled
1 habanero chile
3 red bell peppers, diced
1 cup water
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon Jamaican Curry Powder
1 tablespoon Smoked Spanish Paprika
½ tablespoon thyme
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 tablespoon granulated garlic
1 tablespoon ground ginger
4 bay leaves 
2 cubes chicken or vegetable stock
2 tablespoons salt
3 cups long grain rice, washed 


In a food processor or blender, add 1 diced red onion, tomatoes, tomato paste, garlic cloves, habanero pepper, and bell peppers. Add one cup of water to the mixture to make it easier to blend. Blend for 30 second intervals until the mixture is fine.

In an oven-safe cast iron pot, fry 1 diced onion in olive oil over medium heat. After the onions become translucent, pour the pepper mixture into the cast iron pot, cover and let simmer for 15 minutes until it becomes a sauce. 

In a small bowl, combine Jamaican curry powder, smoked paprika, thyme, nutmeg, garlic, ginger and bay leaves. Stir the spices together and add to the boiling sauce. Stir. Then add 2 cubes of chicken or (vegetable stock) and the salt. Stir again and let it simmer for 5 minutes. 

At this point, preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Add the long grain rice to the sauce, stir and let cook on medium heat for 10 minutes. Jollof is notorious for being burn-prone, so keep a watchful eye on it. After 10 minutes, transfer the cast iron pot to the oven. Cook, covered, for an hour, until the rice is fluffy. 

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