Hello Pursuit of Delight’s readers! I am thrilled you could join me on my cooking excursion, A Night in Cameroon. You will be able to enjoy some good Cameroonian food in the comfort of your own home. I’m also excited for you gals & guys to read our first blog post in our Home Cooking section of the blog. Welcome home cooks and welcome all! 😊
Cameroon is a country located in Central Africa. The people I have met from there are super nice, lively and full of fun and energy. You are sure to have a great time if you ever meet a Cameroonian. Most of all they have some pretty good cuisine. They are known for grilled fish, plantains, rice, potatoes, beans, chicken, and so much more. Their food is full of flavor and yummy!
Well, myself and Tiff. D. have the pleasure of knowing a Cameroonian, born and raised. She also happens to be the Pursuit of Delight’s attorney. Her name is Amabel Bunry. How cool is that? Outside of being an attorney, Ama loves to cook and teach people how to make dishes from her native country. Like I preciously mentioned, Cameroonians are full of life and lovely people. Ama is no different. She loves to host small dinner parties and cook for people. She allowed me the opportunity to come experience A Night in Cameroon with her. Her food is amazing, and I definitely was not going to turn down this opportunity. She can make tons of dishes but for beginners, me and others, we stuck to the basics. Her techniques on preparing different dishes is amazing, but for today’s dinner we are using simple cooking methods.
A good note is Cameroonians eat lots of beans and rice in their daily meals. Since this is a meal for beginners we will include these two items, so you will always have the two staple items in most Cameroonian meals. Also, Ama has adopted the name “Mama Ama” because she cooks just like someone’s mama. They don’t measure ingredients, they just use a little dash or this or a little pinch of that. You got to love it! LOL! Not to worry, I did include amounts for this recipe.
A Night in Cameroon’s Menu:
-Baked Chicken (tossed in “Magic” sauce)
Alright, so fly with me to a Night in Cameroon. Soar across the sky and while preparing this meal, imagine we are in Cameroon at Mama Ama’s mom’s house cooking the perfect feast! Ok, were in Cameroon, let the journey begin!
TIME FROM START TO FINISH:
Approximately 2 hours. This will depend on if you take the short cut with the beans. Also, if you like the “Magic Sauce” and have some already made then this will cut some of your time as well.
WHAT YOU WILL NEED:
- Ingredients listed below
- Cast Iron Skillet
- Blender, Ninja, or Vitamix
- Pressure Cooker (optional)
- 3 lbs. black beans
- 2 large onions (1 for magic sauce & 1 for black beans)
- 1 bunch parsley
- 2 bunch leeks
- 9 Roma tomatoes
- 2 bunch of green onions
- 2 5lb. leg quarters
- Ground Crawfish
- Jasmine Rice
- Knorr Chicken Flavor Bouillon
- Vegetable Oil
1. Place beans in Pressure Cooker. Run water over beans enough to cover plus a little more water. Put a spoonful of salt. Also, to keep stomach from being gassy, place 1 tsp of baking soda. Pressure cooker takes approximately 30 min. to cook. However, if you do not have a pressure cooker you can boil your beans. If you don’t want to do either you can take a short cut and buy canned black beans. If you do this wash, rinse and drain the beans. NOTE: If you do not like salt just omit or limit the amount you use.
2. Chop Chicken into smaller pieces. This allows seasoning to get into the chicken & Marinate more.
3. Rinse chicken, ALWAYS! Put a little White Wine Vinegar on chicken and toss. NOTE: This helps kill any possible bacteria that didn’t wash off.
4. Rinse Produce.
5. In this step we will make what Ama calls the “Magic Sauce”. Its super green by the way! 😊. This is what you will toss the chicken in. You will need a blender, Ninja, or a Vitamix for this step. You will simple blend together all the ingredients listed below. If your machine is not big enough, blend everything in portions until everything is blended. NOTE: The recipe below for the sauce makes a lot. If you are not making as much chicken or beans you can cut the recipe in half. You will use approximately 1 cup of sauce for 3lbs of black beans as well as use this sauce for the chicken. Ama uses this sauce for any meat she cooks. It’s always her first step to toss her meat in the “Magic Sauce” and then use other spices. She always keeps an old yogurt tub full of this sauce in her fridge.
- 1 whole large onion
- 1 ginger root
- 1 whole garlic head
- 2 bunch green onion
- 1 bunch parsley
- ¼ – ½ cup Vegetable Oil
- 1 bunch of leeks
- 1 cup water
6. Preheat oven to 500 degrees F. Place cut up chicken in a large 64” cast iron skillet.
7. On top of the chicken in the skillet, place 1 cup of “Magic Sauce”, a pinch of salt, 3 spoonsful of Knorr’s Chicken Flavor Bouillon, and pinch of Lawry’s Garlic Salt and slowly mix. Mix well. Then add ¼ cup of Vegetable Oil. Mix well. Then add a pinch more of Knorr’s Seasoning.
8. Chop up tomatoes and place them in the blender and blend them down. WELL!! Should look liquidity.
9. In this step we will prepare some ahhhmazing black beans!
- Remove beans from the pressure cooker
- Please in a large bowl. Rinse with cold water and drain. Set beans aside.
- INGREDIENTS FOR BEANS: Beans, “Magic Sauce”, blended tomatoes, sliced onions, and Knorr’s
- While making the beans, place chicken in the oven for 30 min. Turn the chicken every 15 min.
- Heat ½ cup Vegetable Oil in large pot (pot needs to be large for spacing), add salt
- Once oil is heated place onions (sliced) in hot oil
- Cook onions down until they are florescent, and you can smell the aroma (approximately 7-10 min)
- Cook rice by instructions on box or how ever you prepare your rice
- Toss in blended tomatoes to the pot with onions
- Toss in ¼ cup of magic sauce
- Toss in one spoonful of Knorr’s seasoning
- Mix & turn down the heat. Let simmer for 17 min.
- Dump beans in pot with onions, tomatoes, and “Magic Sauce”
- If you’re making chicken, get the chicken broth from chicken in the oven. NOTE: If you are not making chicken and choose just to make the beans; use boxed chicken stock. Use all the juice from the chicken pan. Drizzle a pinch of Vegetable Oil over chicken and mix. Place back in the oven. If not making chicken, use approximately 1 cup of chicken stock. Add ¼ cup of Vegetable oil or Palm Oil. Toss and let simmer 20 min.
- Add Ground Crawfish (1/4 cup). Mix well. Turn heat off and let the beans sit over the eye. Add a pinch more Knorr’s seasoning
10. Turn broiler on to 450-degree F.
11. Don’t place chicken right under broiler but place it a few racks down for about 20-25 min. or until chicken has a nice golden-brown exterior.
Ok, Ok! We have finally reached the end! Job well done on your first Cameroonian meal! Pick the plating of your choice and plate your hot meal. Worry about the dishes later, if you didn’t wash along the way. Sit back and dive in! I hope you love this simple meal as much as I do. We’ll fly back to the states in the morning! Just make sure to leave Mama Ama’s mother’s home the way you found it and clean up after yourself. Dig in and enjoy!