Monday, September 24, 2007
The 67th good thing about Lagos: Learning new ways to use beans
Last Saturday afternoon we had our Relief Society enrichment meeting. This is something our church's women's organization does occasionally where there are learning opportunities of different varieties. I definitely learned something new at this class. Our teacher, a very intelligent and educated young single Nigerian woman who works as a nurse midwife talked first about the nutritional benefits of using beans in our diet. She then talked about soy beans in particular and demonstrated different ways to prepare them and mill them into flour. She gave us some samples of fried soybeans and toasted soy flour. She also talked about using and preparing a brown bean that is common here, which she also grinds into flour, as well as cooking it and using in soups and stews. She also mixes this bean flour with groundnut (the Nigerian word for peanut) flour. She made a dumpling mixing soy flour with water, adding chopped onion, some hot powdered pepper (which she also ground herself) and salt and a few other spices. After frying it in oil (using a kerosene stove -- which made our American RS president, who is not as accustomed as the Nigerians to cooking on a portable stove, VERY nervous) we got a sample and it was very tasty! She also explained we could make this kind of dumpling and steam it in a little bit of water, or drop it directly into boiling soup to cook. She said "this is like meat -- very good protein for your diet." Because the meat here is quite expensive and sometimes a little scary, I think I'll try this sometime.