The Nigerian Rice Richness And Riches!

Rice is the seed of an aquatic wild grass known as “Oryza rufipogen” subsequently, based on archaeological evidences the rice crop was first domesticated in the region of the Yangtze River Valley in China to what is now cultivated and domesticated as the “Oryza Sativa” with a history of over 8000 years ago across the world. The rice crop has many varieties differentiated by colors such as the arborio, jasmine, basmati with the colors of red, black and purple; the long grain rice becomes separate and fluffy after cooking, the medium grain rice is chewy, while the short-grain rice is so starchy and sticky. The most popular is the basmati rice that is aromatic and delicious. In Nigeria to eat simply means to eat rice, some family serve rice 3 times every day while others can only afford it just once a week; some family are known to only eat rice during festive seasons. It is a very much loved grain that is consumed all across the Nigerian socioeconomic classes, cultures, and cuisines that are unique to regions in Nigeria.

The ecology of Nigeria is well suited for the different varieties of rice, if well harnessed will boost rice production to meet the domestic demands and export excess for foreign exchange. A trip around the various farms seen are a great percentage of the total land mass in Nigeria are cropped to rice, spreading over five major ecologies of upland, inland or shallow swamp, irrigated rice, deep water or floating rice, and the tidal mangrove or swamp, in spite of the blessed environments for rice cultivation, however, Nigeria is still not occupying a position amongst the highest rice producers worldwide. Rice as the most important staple food for more than a half of the world population is still ranking behind wheat and maize crops in an overall production ratings across the world.
Rice is an indigenous crop to Nigeria with many states cultivating the rice crop varieties unique to the ecology of their various zones; Rice is commonly cooked by boiling or steaming, can be processed at home into a gluten-free flour, while the brown rice has a nutty flavor, the white rice is bland with a neutral flavor, generally called “shinkafa” in Hausa, known as “Iresi” in Yoruba and “Osikapa” for the Igbo in Nigeria. The Ofada rice of western Nigeria is organic, unpolished and naturally considered a brown rice; it is of the short varieties with brown stripes, having also a unique aroma and it is nutrient-dense. The Abakaliki rice is also one of the best varieties of indigenous rice of southern Nigeria; the Abakaliki soil is suitable for growing rice just like the soils of the Savannah. In the north-east long before the deadly and devastating insurgency that hit a staggering blow to the north-east Nigeria, Borno has been one of the leading states in rice production with Dikwa Local Government producing “Dikwa Rice” which is known as the best rice variety in Nigeria. The lake chad is an economically and environmentally important space area for Nigeria; the lake chad basin cut across the state of Borno with the largest in Africa of a closed sedimentary groundwater basins which encompasses three climate zones of the Saharan desert climate in the North, the Sahel in central Chad having the wet and dry seasons while the Sudan Zone in the South with a hot, wet-dry tropical climate, therefore having the Borno state fall under the Sahel Zone and coupled with the insecurities in the whole of the Sahel Zones. The environmental negative impact of climate change having a serious negative impact on agriculture in the Sahel Zone, seen happening is the ever increasing floods, droughts consequently having the surface area of the Lake Chad shrinking fast by the day which is due to the effects of climate change.
The increase in rice cultivation and consumption in Nigeria with production not meeting the consumption requirements of the Nigeria rapidly growing population demanding and developing a taste for the “expired” imported parboiled rice sentimentally believed to free of “stones” when compared to the much more freshly and nourishing locally produced Nigerian rice. The reasons to the increasing importation of rice and less consumption of the locally produced rice which seriously is against the need and success for rice self-sufficiency in Nigeria. Consequently, a damaging drain on the Nigerian foreign reserve which has led to the total ban of rice importation and a complete border closure, aimed at encouraging and boosting local rice production; thus rewarding small holders farmers with a good return on investment and rice farmers in Nigeria are now more than ever before seen smiling to the Bank and the poor people sweating under the weight of high cost of rice and inflation caused by economic downturn affecting every aspect of daily living in Nigeria.

The north-east is devastated by the over a decade insurgency crisis and the whole of northern Nigeria is also affected by several crisis of unrest and insecurity that is trickling gradually to engulf the southern parts and other regions in Nigeria. The north-east Nigeria is suffering from acute poverty, hunger, malnutrition, diseases due to the insecurity and the sky-rocketing high cost of goods and services with zero purchasing power due to the unstable economic downturn is affecting every region of Nigeria. The north-east is faced with starvation living at the mercy of humanitarian aids by donor agencies for survival. An increased agricultural and sustainable food production are the must vital in the north-east; thus feeding for survival the sustainable development goals (SDG) 2 “End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture.” Rice is key to food security and food security will speed up the resettlement of the internally displaced peoples (IDPs), back to their ancestral homes in the north-east caused by the over a decade long insurgency and assisting also other regions faced with insecurity all across Nigeria.

The Nigerian Rice Celebrations
There is no household in Nigeria that does not serve the rice as a meal daily or at least once a week and there is no party all over Nigeria that has not included the rice dish in its menu, every restaurant continental to the local “buka” of the street food corners that does not cook and sell the rice as a meal either as a one pot or cooked separately and served with stews or sauces, every school canteen, hospitals offices where food are cooked and served always have the rice meal available due to high demand. In Nigeria celebration is not complete without the rice; rice as the most relished of food staples during joyous moments and festive events, the traditional meals all across Nigeria must include the rice cooked as a one pot dish or serve cooked as white rice and serve with stew and sauces while others include several traditional snacks prepared with the rice to be shared out as gifts for families and friends. The celebration of happy moments in Nigerian households have visitors entertained with various delicacies including the most popular of rice dishes “the jollof rice” and the “fried rice” which is similar to the former as a one pot dish but specially stir-fried in coconut milk or chicken stock with the addition of assorted meats, crabs and colorful vegetables. The season of religious celebrations all over the country Nigeria begins with the giving as gifts bags of rice to official staffs of big companies, government and political office holders also receive bags of rice for their families while smaller packages of the rice are shared out during the fasting seasons of Ramadhan Mubarak as Ramadhan Kareem gift for the most important “breakfast” of “kunu” which is the creamy rice pudding that must be consumed during the fasting season all over northern Nigeria.
The festive seasons is normally a good time for most rice sellers to experience boom in sales of the different brands and bags of rice on display for customers, oftentimes such during festive seasons the prices of the most sought after rice commodity is inflated and at times hoarded to sell at a much higher price in order to make an unreasonable profit. The rich families always have a list of family members in the villages to send the annually awaited gift of rice bags along with other essentials for the festive celebrations. The traditional wedding ceremonies are moment also when the rice becomes the most important food to be presented to the bride-to-be by her groom-to-be or vice versa depending on the tribe; the rice as a gift in northern Nigeria where several bags of the rice follows the bride-to-be to her new home while in the southern Nigeria the groom-to-be must include bags of rice with other bridal items with which to seek the hands of the bride-to-be and all across cultures, customs and tradition of marriages the bags of rice must be presented during important celebrations.

The Nigerian Rice Richness And Riches!
The Nigerian Rice Richness And Riches!

Rice Recipe Richness
The brown and white rice assist in various ways to improve the body’s health from the stomach to skin; indulge in the delicious and awesome, scoop the sumptuous recipes of rice richness below:-

De-Starch Rice
The diabetic patients can enjoy rice just like others if the starch content is reduced and then cooked or served with healthy vegetables, lean protein of beans, soy products, eggs and fruits. The cooking process of de-starching rice produce a soft, fluffy and starch free cooked rice.

Recipe Ingredients
White rice
Spices of choice

Recipe Steps
The rice is traditionally washed in calabash bowl to separate the grains from the sand because most locally produced rice contain sand grits.
Then rinse severally under running water, turning it and rubbing the grains gently between the fingers aids in removing starch at the washing stage.
On low heat slowly bring water to boil then pour in the washed rice, cover and parboil; half way thorough cooking, remove from the heat and strain out the cloudy starchy water, keep for other uses as thickener or beauty home care for the skin and hair.
Pour fresh clean water on the rice and rinse several times until water is free of cloudy starchy contents, add a little water, olive oil, then season with salt and spices of choice, stir all together to mix in with a fork. Cover and steam cook until all water content is reduced and dehydrated; put off the heat then fluff up with a fork and cover to rest before serving.

Cooked White Rice
The meal is simply the boiling of the raw rice until soft, then serve with any side dishes, stews or vegetable soups, oftentimes it is one of the often requested meals in cooking joints, a lot of women are known to have made fortune out of the business of cooked rice. The meal that is loved by students and pupils in various schools, market places and offices are not left out of the deep love for a plate or two of the cooked white rice. The cooked white rice for varieties is versatile for add-ons such as cubed yam tubers, irish potatoes and spaghetti.

Recipe Ingredients
Raw white rice
Spices of choice bay or scent leaf

Recipe Steps
The rice is traditionally washed in calabash bowl to separate the grains from the sand because most locally produced rice contain sand grits.
Then rinse severally under running water, turning it and rubbing the grains gently between the fingers aids in removing starch at the washing stage.
On low heat slowly bring water to boil then pour in the washed rice, cover and parboil; half way thorough cooking, remove from the heat and strain out the cloudy starchy water
Bring water to boil then add the parboiled rice, season with salt and spices of choice, stir all together to mix in with a fork.
Cover and cook until all water content is reduced and evaporated; put off the heat then fluff up with a fork and cover to rest before serving.
Serve with any sauce, stew or soup of choice.

Rice Stews, Sauces, Soups
The Nigerian stews, sauces and soups depends on ones taste and choices of the ingredients, methods, and recipes. the resulting outcome also depends on the duration of cooking. the taste of the palm oil soups, sauces and stews cooked with fish is different from the meat and the longer the frying, the drier and thicker it becomes and the tastier the flavor giving a distinct aroma. the palm oil based pepper stew or sauce is for the yoruba “obe ata’ hausa is “miyan degedege or jar miya” a hot and spicy recipe; the palm oil stew and sauce originated from the yoruba, and two method are used in preparation either the use of the raw unrefined palm oil or the smoky bleached palm oil is used for the stew. the unbleached palm oil is best for soups dishes serve with vegetable and swallows. the distinct aroma of onions frying in smoky palm oil carries far and wide all through the neighborhood and the addition of the locust beans dawadawa is just about shoot it over the fence; if the stew is well stir-fried it can be stored in the refrigerator for several days. the stews and sauces taste amazing but serve with different meals for the red palm oil stew “obe ata” is eaten and serve with “okro, gbegiri or ewedu soups” which is eaten with any swallow of choice like amala, fufu, eba, pounded yam or semovita. The bleached palm oil stew is eaten with rice, beans, yam, or any other food choices.

Recipe Ingredients
Beef, chicken, or fish.
Blended vegetables paste consisting of the tomatoes, bell-pepper, scotch bonnets and onions.
Seasoning cubes and salt to taste.
Onion slices for more flavor and aroma.
Vegetable or Palm oil.
Boiled eggs.

Recipe steps
The blended paste is made up of washing and removing the seeds (optional) of the red bell pepper, tomatoes, scotch bonnets, add chopped onions and blend all together to get a thick paste which forms the stew base. The cooking oil of choice is used according to recipe or preference; Wash and cut the choice of meat into pieces, then place in a pot with onion slices, salt to taste and seasoning cubes. Add just enough water to cook meat until tender.
The magic step starts here for the bleached palm oil; place a dry deep pan on low heat add in palm oil and carefully heat up the oil until smoky and color changes to golden yellow, add in the onion slices; a delicious and flavorful aroma will sizzle out. fry the onion until crispy, add the blended pepper combo paste and stir-fry until all liquid is evaporated.
the red palm oil stew is different because instead of bleaching the oil all one need to do is to just heat up to sizzle and lightly fry the onions to remove the raw palm oil taste and still the oil retains its beautiful red color and nutrients. If prefer fry the meat in the heated oil for a crispy bite.
sauté the chopped onions, and add the pepper paste, stir-fry as for the above method.
add the meat stock, stir-in well and cover pot, simmer the stew on low heat. taste for salt and seasoning cubes, add or adjust according to taste.
once the liquid content is gone down and stew thickens with the palm oil glistening on top then add fried meat, fish or both. gently fold in and stir to coat the meat or fish. cover and simmer on low heat for the meats or fish to absorb the flavor of stew. remove from heat, garnish with boiled eggs to serve.
serve over rice, beans, or both, fried plantain or yam or any other food choices.

Rice And Beans
The dishes is made up of a mixture of rice for carb and beans for protein, a super and delicious combination that is popularly sold along the streets and also hawk by able-bodied men all over the streets of Kano in northern Nigeria generally tag as “garawgaraw” meaning a cheap and complete meal, often serve with just groundnut oil that has been fried in lots of onions with the local spices of “yaji” made up of ginger, cloves, locust beans is the daddawa and chili pepper while for those who can afford the extra charges demand the special pepper sauce and meat to go with the rice and beans meal.

Recipe Ingredients
Raw rice
Raw red black eye beans
Pepper sauce or Yaji spices

Recipe Steps
Pick out the stones and particles from the beans, rinse several in running water, pour into a deep pot and add enough water to cook until soft.
Meanwhile, wash the raw rice and drain away all water; once the beans is half way through cooking at the parboiled stage; add in the washed raw rice.
Check for water content if not enough add some more, season with salt and cover to cook
As soon as both rice and beans are soften, and all water content evaporated it is ready.
Remove from heat and serve with any stew or sauces.
The recipe is often cooked according to preference, many do not enjoy cooking both as a one pot meal, simple cook rice and beans separately.
Serve according to request because while some many want to have lots of beans others prefer very little in the meal.

Rice Milk
The homemade rice milk is naturally creamy and sweet, the recipe is free of artificial additives, the less water added the creamier. It is important to soak and pitted the dates to blend in with rice milk; a delicious addition and alternative to cow milks in fruit drinks, shakes and smoothies.
A lot of variations can be made out of the rice milk; Rice berry milk add berries, rice chocolate milk add cocoa powder.

Recipe Ingredients
Raw unpolished rice, the white long grain rice is the best
Soaked and pitted dates for sweetness
Pinch of salt
Vanilla essence

Recipe Steps
First step is to rinse well and soak dates to soften.
Wash rice to remove all dirts and debris then soak in very hot water for several hours of 2-4; ready for use when it snap into two easily with the fingernails for the rice needs to be soft and remain raw not “cooked” rice.
Drain water used for soaking the rice and transfer into a blender or food processor and blend on high speed to attain a really smooth paste for easy blending at home add just a little water but alternatively if the quantity is much take to the commercial “engine” for wet milling.
Add in the dates, salt and any other choice ingredients of fruits or cocoa powder according to the recipe.
Cover lid and blend for the last time severally until all the add-on are really mix in thoroughly with no tiny pieces.
Check for sweetness and sweeten with sweeteners of choice according to taste but if prefer add more soaked and pitted dates for the desired sweetness.
Turn out the blended rice mixture in a jug, then using a cheese bag or muslin cloths.
Strain out the rice milk for a smooth creamy milk free of residues, if possible strain it twice and pour into milk bottles or an airtight jars, seal cover and label with recipe, date, and ingredients used for the rice milk; store in the refrigerator.
Serve alone as a fulfilling sweet and yummy delights or substitute in other recipes for milk.

Rice Bread
The bread made with rice flour can be use for sandwiches also, as long as a light and fluffy loaf is baked; if allergic to any of the added ingredients then substitutes for others much more suitable for healthiness.
Rice bread is gluten-free and healthier than flour bread; add a binding agent to achieve a rice bread with a gumminess but still a healthy alternative. A delicious, moist and tender bread; soft and sweet. Always use fresh rice flour to obtain a fluffy bread.

Recipe Ingredients
White rice flour or Brown rice flour
Cooking or vegetable oil
Lemon juice

Recipe Steps
In a bowl with the aid of a whisk, combine all wet ingredients in a separate bowl and mix in altogether to blend.
Sieve together all the dry ingredients, and gradually introduce into the wet mixture; whisking in well with every addition, until a sticky and light dough forms.
Transfer to a dusted work surface area and knead lightly with the hands.
Roll out into a square shape, and then roll from one end to the other end to form a log shape.
Carefully place into the ready oiled and dusted bread pan; Cover and allow to rise to double in size.
In a preheated oven, bake until a golden crusted top, and a deliciously sweet yummy aroma fills up the air.
Then remove from the oven and allow to cool completely, then remove from the pan and slice or store in an airtight bread bag; keep in the refrigerator.
Serve alone with beverages or side dishes of choice.

Masa Or Rice Fried Puff
Traditionally all over northern Nigeria “masa” is often presented during ceremonies and festive periods, more common as a breakfast meal; whereby every morning all over streets corners in northern Nigeria “masa” food vendors from various households are strategically sitted to light up firewood fireplaces in readiness to fry and sell the much relished snack-meal. The pan for frying masa has multiple deep round holes unlike the one used for frying sinasir which leaves its round shapes on the masa; masa is popularly served with “yajin karago” specially made from the groundnut cake of kulikuli, chili pepper, ginger, garlic and cloves, with salt and seasoning cubes, while others prefer the miyan yakuwa. It is generally served wrapped up in paper for take-away by the street food vendors while fancy restaurants specially package it with their names and addresses on the packages.
The queues during early mornings and late evenings for the popular “masa” are long with many buying and eating at the masa vendors spot while others buy and take-away.
In many homes during festivities and at weddings it is presented to special guests and many are making a good living earning income for the business of masa and sinasir.

Recipe Ingredients
Unpolished white rice washed and soaked for 6-24 hours
Unpolished cooked rice
Baking powder
Sugar and salt
Chopped onions
Potash solution
Vegetable oil for frying

Recipe Steps
Wash and soak rice for 6-24 hrs. or overnight; then drain and rinse in running water.
Add chopped onions and wet mill into a smooth rice paste; add yeast, baking powder, sugar and mix to blend in properly.
Cover and place in a warm oven or in the sun to prove and double in size.
Add in the mushy cooked rice, and stir in to mix, add more chopped onions, potash water or solution, and beat in the mixture with a hand whisk.
The addition of salt or sugar decides whether it is a sweet or savory masa.
Then place on low heat the locally made non-stick pan for frying masa has multiple deep round holes unlike the one used for frying sinasir which leaves its round shapes on the masa.
Pour into each holes little vegetable oil, scoop the rice mixture by the spoonful and simultaneously drop into each; fry on low heat until the edges are crispy golden brown and the surface forms tiny air holes; flip over and fry the other sides, unlike sinasir both sides must be fried.
Remove from the heat and place in a food warmer or cellophane bags to retain its moist and fluffy texture.
Serve as desired.

Rice Pancake Or Sinasir
Sinasir is just a rice version of the white flour pancakes, so fluffy light, paper thin with several air holes. Traditionally serve at very important events such as weddings, naming ceremonies and festive seasons all over northern Nigeria.

Recipe Ingredients
The unpolished local white rice; soaked overnight
Cooked rice
Yogurt or the local yogurt called nono kindirmo
Yeast, baking powder or potash water solution
Sugar and Salt
Vegetable oil
The traditional Sinasir mud frying pan

Recipe Steps
Wash the unpolished rice and soak for 6 to 24 hours depending on rice variety.
Drain water and rinse severally, add in the cooked rice, then wet mill into a smooth rice paste.
Add yeast, sugar and yogurt, mix in by whisking to blend in all ingredients.
Cover and place in a warm oven or under the sun to prove until double in size.
Mix in the baking powder or potash solution and stir in to blend with the rice mixture.
There is a traditional mud frying pan that is specially used for frying sinasir called “Kaskon Sinasir” in Hausa; it is a flat and non-stick mud pan.
Clean it and place on low heat, grease the base with oil lightly, pour a scoop of the sinasir mixture and spread out with a spatula to cover the base thinly.
Cover it with “FaiFai” the hand-woven raffia placement kitchen tray but if not available then use any flat tray to trap in the steam.
Once a tiny air bubble holes appears all over its surface with no whitish raw mixture visible then it is done; do not flip over, it is only cooked on just one side for a soft and fluffy sinasir, lightly grease the surface with vegetable oil then fold into two, again fold into another two to obtain a triangle-like shape of four layers. Remove from the kasko pan and place in a food warmer to keep it warm, and fluffy soft.
Repeat the process of frying until all rice mixture is used up and fried into sinasir.
Serve with fresh or dried okro soup, stir-fry sauces or stews with fried chicken and local beverages.

Rice Gruel Or Kunun Shinkafa In Hausa
The pudding is made with the rice grains visible in it for a chewy delight while taking the gruel pudding, added to it are yogurt, tamarind or lemon for a tangy creamy taste, sweeten with sweeteners of choice, and serve with the famous Nigerian steamed or fried beans cakes of akara or moimoi for a completely satisfying meal.

Recipe Ingredients:
Raw Rice Unpolished
Groundnut Milk, Cow milk or milk of choice
Corn flour
Sweeteners of choice honey or sugar
Native Spices of ginger, cloves and pepper
Tamarind is tsamiya or lemon juice or yogurt

Recipe Steps:
Pour the groundnut milk into a deep saucepan and place on low heat, slowly bring to boil and watch not to boil over.
Wash thoroughly the raw unpolished rice and pour into the boiling groundnut milk or any other milk of choice.
Stirring continuously to avoid it sticking to the pot, cook until rice is really mushy.
Scoop some corn flour or starch, and add water to dissolve then slowly add to the cooking rice gruel until the desired thickness is achieved.
Put off heat, allow to cool then add the yogurt, lemon or tamarind juice; quickly stir and blend in properly until it thickens.
Sweeten with sweeteners of choice, serve any time of the day with any choice side dishes.

Rice Flour
The rice flour is mostly in the two commonly used rice varieties of the white and brown rice; the brown rice flour is heavier with loads of fiber than the white flour and also varies in taste, texture and healthiness. It is low in sodium, enriched with vitamins and minerals. The finer and free flowing the rice flour then the better it will be at giving a nicer texture in baked goodies.
The rice flour is used for many recipes of the Nigerian staple swallow for tuwon shinkafa, puddings or gruels, pancakes, pastries, snacks, the gluten-free and moist rice bread.

Recipe Ingredients
Raw white or brown rice
Glass jars
Re-sealable bags

Recipe Steps
Always measure out the required quantity, because with every quantity of raw rice dry milled the quantity increases by half of the original quantity milled.
Simply use the brown or white rice and dry mill into a very fine and free flowing flour.
Sieve into a large bowl and transfer the rice flour into an airtight glass jars; but if stored in re-sealable bags; squeeze out air then seal bag, label with date and recipe ingredients.
De-Starch Rice Flour:- Wash severally the raw rice then rinse in running water to remove dirt and dust but do not soak.
Spread out, air dry or sun dry the de-starched raw rice. Transfer into a large dish, and take to the heavy duty commercial grinding machine for dry milling, requesting for a smooth and free flowing flour by requesting for “laushi” grinding method at the commercial engine, which is achieved by repeatedly milling the raw rice until really fine and free-flowing.
Sieve and keep for use as substitutes in various recipes that requires de-starched rice flour or use as half/half with wheat, cassava or other cereal flours that can blend in perfectly.

Rice Grits Or Tsakin Shinkafa In Hausa
The grits or tsaki is a coarse loosely dry milled raw rice, popularly included in daily meal all over northern Nigeria, often refer to as the “local couscous” called “Barbisco or tsaki”, so super nourishing fiber-filled because it is well processed wholemeal homemade grits especially the variety of the brown rice.
Steamed cooked with vegetables for chewy and a delightful meal, prepared into the nutrient-dense soupy “gwaten shinkafa” in Hausa; perfect with sauces, stews or vegetable soups.

Recipe Ingredients
Raw white or brown rice
Glass jars
Re-sealable bags

Recipe Steps
Almost the same processing methods except for the final outcome that is simply grits not flour; always measure out the required quantity, because with every quantity of raw rice dry milled the quantity increases by half of the original quantity milled.
Simply use the brown or white rice and dry mill into a coarse grits; the rice grits after grinding or milling is warm, do not store covered immediately, allow to air and cool.
Sieve out the smooth flour out of the rice grits and use for other recipes.
Scoop out the rice grits, “barbisco or tsaki” into a container.
Cover with lid and keep in a cool dry place.

The Nigerian Jollof Rice
The Jollof rice is a one pot rice dish with an mix of the rice, the red tomatoes for the beautiful deep orange color, spices depending on traditional cuisine style that are unique to locality, it is served and eaten as a main meal with side dishes depending on affordability and availability, it is a must included and presented at parties, religious celebrations of the festive seasons of Sallah and Christmas, family gatherings of meetings, naming celebrations and weddings always have for guests in attendance the exotic dish of the Jollof rice. The recipes for jollof rice depends also on ingredients choice which mostly depends on the ingredients, it is a one pot combination of the tomatoes paste, onions, vegetable oil, seasoning cubes, spices, which may include thyme, curry, ginger or garlic powder while the cooking methods vary according to preference and household cuisines, but the jollof rice to be complete the most important ingredients still remains the rice, tomatoes, onions, cooking oil, spices and the meat or fish, recipes often go for spicy, saucy, sweetness or above all the healthy richness of the meal. The garnishing of the jollof rice now is optional for if it is available then fried plantain generally called “dodo” is a great accompaniment for the dish, coleslaw salad, chopped vegetables, banana slices, or cucumber also is used as garnishing. the traditional method of cooking jollof rice especially at parties is believed that for it to be authentic with the unique taste of home cooking it must be cooked on the firewood fireplaces for the traditional distinct trademark of smoky flavor, aroma and must also be burnt for the crispy bottom pot flakes.
All across the west African countries jollof rice recipes are unique to each in added ingredients, rice variety and the method of cooking. Jollof rice can be as expensive as one can afford and just as easy, cheap, delicious as just the rice, oil, seasonings, and the locust beans to spiced it up.

Recipe Ingredients
Rice mostly the long grain
Vegetable oil
Tomatoes paste or puree
Onions and tomatoes sliced or chopped
seasoning cubes, and salt
Spices of choice ginger, garlic, bay leaves, and locust beans is optional
The base sauce is made out of the following ingredients of red bell pepper, tomatoes, scotch bonnets and onions.

Recipe Steps
Wash rice to rinse off dirts and starch, drain water and keep; bring water to boil and pour in the wash rice, then parboil for just some few minutes. Drain water and rinse again to reduce the starch contents and to make for a fluff not mushy jollof rice.
If chicken is the preferred for the jollof rice then wash and cut into desired chicken parts, marinate with spices of choice most preferable the garlic, ginger and onion powders, add salt and seasoning cubes, then the onion slices. Cover and allow to marinate for all spices to be absorbed into the chicken parts, add just a little water enough to cook it to tenderness. Check for doneness, then remove from stock and reserve the chicken stock for the cooking of the jollof rice. Place vegetable oil on low heat, add in onion slices, drop into it the chicken parts and fry in hot oil until crispy golden brown skin and a flaky tender-soft flesh that is moist and juicy with every bite.
On low heat place a sauce pan, add the cooking oil to heat up then add chopped onion and sauté for few minutes, add the tomatoes paste or puree, season with spices of choice for an aromatic dish such as the thyme, curry, garlic, ginger powder and drop in the bay leaves without crushing it, stirring continuously until a thicken sauce, add in to the sauce grounded pepper, season with salt seasoning cubes and stir fry until a dried up sauce but not sticking to pot.
Pour in the chicken stock and blend in properly, bring it to boil and then add in the parboiled rice, half way through doneness, reduce heat further down and finish off the cooking with the steam.
Scoop and garnish with onion and tomato slices, remove the bay leaves and arrange all over as garnishing. Serve with the fried chicken, any green vegetable of choice, coleslaw is generally the most preferred, fried plantain, or banana slices. Enjoy it with any traditionally prepared beverage of kunun zaki, rice milk, or the nutrient-dense zobo drink prepared with the sorrel-hibiscus red buds.

Fried Rice
A sumptuous and scrumptious rice dish cooked with cubed beef liver, a rainbow of vegetable colors and served with fried chicken. While the vegan fried rice recipe simply omits the addition of meat; a beautiful meal, full of flavor with spicy and crunchy vegetables, the richness of the fried rice depends on the quality of ingredients used for the recipe of fried rice. It is never in competition with the popular Jollof rice because of the various colors of vegetable used which is not added to the Jollof rice, in some recipes of the fried rice it chicken stock can be substituted for the coconut milk for an amazingly distinct and flavorful fried rice while other recipes of the fried rice includes as a substitutes for protein the boiled or scrambled eggs.

Recipe Ingredients
Long grain white rice
Green and yellow bell pepper
Sweet corn
Purple onions and spring onions
Green beans or sweet peas
Chicken and chicken stock
Vegetable oil
Seasoning cubes, and salt
Spices of choice ginger, or garlic powder, bay leaves, and locust beans is optional

Recipe Steps
Wash and cut-up the chicken, season with salt, cubes and spices of choice. Add chopped onions, water and cover.
On low heat, slowly cook until all seasonings is absorbed in the chicken meat is tender. Remove the chicken parts and fry until it is moist from the inside and crispy golden brown skin.
Meanwhile add parboiled rice to the reserved chicken stock and cook until the rice is soft and liquid content absorb in the cooked rice.
In a separate dry saucepan, placed on low heat, add little oil, onion slices, and sauté. Turn and toss in the various vegetables, add thyme and curry for that beautiful color, season with cubes and salt not forgetting the already cooked rice in chicken stock. Add in the cooked and cubed beef liver and mix all together to blend thoroughly.
Scoop cooked rice on to the stir-fried vegetables and gently fold in to coat and blend in completely; cover and simmer for few more minutes.
Serve with the fried chicken.

Rice Swallow Or Tuwon Shinkafa
A northern Nigeria staple swallow meal cooked in every household and a lot of the local street food vendors are known for the best of the tuwon swallow that are popularly at the parks, market places, garages and even hawked around other vendors go as far as supply the tuwon shinkafa on demand during parties and festivities; many have made a lot of gain out of the tuwon shinkafa business because a lot of Nigerians love and request the meal on the go believed and enjoyed for its versatility and ease of digestion. The rice swallow are prepared using the rice flour or the cooked rice grains then serve with the okro soup known as miyan kubewa, miyan kuka the baobab green leaves soup, miyan taushe just like the egusi, prepared with the pumpkin, spinach and the hibiscus leaves, the zogale moringa soup, pepper soups, or the groundnut soup but goes perfectly well with any soup of choice.

Recipe Ingredients
The locally produced and unpolished white rice
Calabash small bowl for molding into balls
Cellophane to wrap up the tuwon shinkafa balls

Recipe Steps
Pick out all debris, or particles from the rice, wash using the calabash to remove sand grits or pebbles, then rise severally until all the starchy and cloudy water turns clean.
Place on medium heat a pot of water, allow to reach boiling point then add the washed rice, watching closely not to boil over and cook rice until fluffy and mushy, normally the tuwon shinkafa requires much more water that for the white rice or jollof rice because to achieve a soft and smooth swallow the rice must be over cooked.
Reduce heat completely when all liquid is evaporated leaving only the cooked rice, with a spatula or food turner; turn and fold in the cooked rice continuously until a solid and smooth mold is achieved with just a few cooked rice grains that is visible, scrape to the middle all sides of the pot and then cover with lid for just few minutes to steam cook.
Turn quickly for the second time until completely a smoothen soft mold, scoop into portion according to preference and place into a tiny calabash bowl, then continuously roll it by turning the calabash bowl anticlockwise or clockwise until it forms a perfectly beautiful ball.
Place in a food warmer or wrap-up in a cellophane to prevent it from drying up and form a flaky surface, repeat the process until all is molded.
Serve with any favorite soups of choice and drizzle all over ghee known as “mai shanu” in Hausa for an amazingly delicious and satisfying meal.

Rice Flour Swallow
The rice flour swallow is prepared with the rice flour derived from the locally produced and unpolished white rice, is washed and separated from stone grits and spread out to sun-dry then milled into rice flour; then sieve and keep for recipes requiring the rice flour. Serve with soup of choice with the mai shanu known as ghee for an aromatic and tantalizingly superb meals.

Recipe Ingredients
Rice flour
Calabash small bowl for molding into balls
Cellophane to wrap up the tuwon shinkafa balls

Recipe Steps
On low heat place a cooking pot add water enough for making the rice swallow, bring to boil slowly.
The required rice flour must be compared to the right water quantity for a cooked and soften rice swallow; scoop out some of the hot water and keep for later use during the turning and folding in, in order to achieve the right doneness, and smoothness.
Gradually add in to the slowly boiling water the rice flour, turning and folding in with every addition of the rice flour until a thick pudding is achieved.
Cover the pot and allow the pudding to boil and cook, check for doneness and for the second time introduce again the gradual addition of the rice flour while turning and folding in until thicken and smooth mold, sprinkle water all over to wet the surface, cover and reduce heat to finish off the cooking.
Finally, repeat the process of turning and folding in until the desired softness and smoothness is achieved.
Scoop into portion according to preference and place into a tiny calabash bowl, then continuously roll it by turning the calabash bowl anticlockwise or clockwise until it forms a perfectly beautiful ball.
Place in a food warmer or wrap-up in a cellophane to prevent it from drying up and form a flaky surface, repeat the process until all is molded.
Serve with any favorite soups of choice and drizzle all over ghee known as “mai shanu” in Hausa for an amazingly delicious and satisfying meal.

Rice Noodles
Rice noodles are so easy to cook, the steam vapor can easily cook into doneness or simply add to left-over sauces and stews; roll and toss in to coat, twist and turn until well blended in, all ready for a deliciously light meal.

Recipe Ingredients
Rice flour
Corn Starch
Cooking oil
Salt and water

Recipe Steps
Get ready a dry mixing bowl, sieve into it the rice flour and corn starch to incorporate more air.
Add just a pinch of salt and gradually add in the water and mix with each addition until a really smooth mixture that is free of lumps.
Drizzle some vegetable oil and mix in to achieve a pouring consistency.
Place a sieve over a bowl and pour the rice batter through the sieve to trap minute particles and to also achieve a pour consistency that is smooth.
Cover the rice batter and place in a warm place undisturbed for an hour.
Place a steamer on low heat and bring the water to boil, on the upper rack place a non-stick tray or pan then spray with cooking oil.
Scoop the rice batter and pour on to it then tilt the pan all around to coat the base with the rice batter.
Cover the steamer and allow to cook for 5 minutes.
Open and remove the cooked rice sheets and place in an oiled dish, with a kitchen brush lightly rub cooking oil on the rice noodle sheets, cover bowl.
Repeat the process until all the rice batter is steamed into noodle rice sheets.
Meanwhile, grease a table work area and once all the rice sheets of the noodles are ready, place on the table and cut into strips shapes with sizes of choice.
If there is available a noodle machine simply set it to noodle shapes and sizes, then feed the noodle sheets through it rollers and cut into desired shapes and sizes.
Sprinkle the noodles with rice flour to avoid sticking and clumping together, toss to coat well.
Spread out on a tray, clean mat or table work area and air or sun dry into crispy and delicate strips.
Carefully transfer into kitchen re-sealable bags to retain its crispiness, instant noodle is ready.
Store in a clean dry place, or the refrigerator.
Substitute for other noodle varieties in all recipes of choice.

Rice Flat Bread
A gluten-free bread that can be served as a complete and delicious meal served vegetables, stir-fries, fish or meat sauces.

Recipe Ingredients
Rice flour
Oil to grease the frying pan and the hands
Parchment paper or cellophane

Recipe Steps
On low heat bring water to boil, add salt a little oil and gradually introduce the rice flour, stirring constantly, turning and folding in the mixture as for making a swallow or tuwon shinkafa until crumbly mold. Turn off the heat, cover to finish off cooking with the steam.
Scoop and transfer the cooked rice mold into a large dish then beat with a hand mixer or food turner until a crumbly mold, then wrap-up in parchment paper or cellophane; knead repeatedly until a soft and smooth dough. Then roll out into a long shape, cut out into uniform cycles and roll each piece into a ball.
Grease the palms of the hands and then flatten each ball into a round cycle; to avoid sticking to rolling pin, place the cycle between two sheets of cellophane or parchment paper, roll out into a thin like flat pancake.
Place on an oiled non-stick pan over low heat and dry fry or toast until puff-up with golden brown patches, turn and cook the other side.

Rice Flour Desert Or Nakiya In Hausa
A sweet snack dessert that is traditionally prepared for royalty and it is always available in palaces of kings to entertain important visitors and guests. A sweet, crumbly and melt-in-the-mouth snack which is a must included in the new brides sweet snacks known as “Kayan Zaki” in northern Nigeria.
A deliciously filling snack to satisfy hunger eaten alone or with local beverages of kunun zaki, zobo, ardep or kunun koko. It can also be soaked in water to dissolve then place on low heat for an instant pudding or gruel.

Recipe Ingredients
Organic white rice known as farin shinkafa in Hausa
Ginger, Cloves and chili pepper as mixed spices
lemon juice

Recipe Steps
The local rice is normally the white and un-parboiled rice and mostly contain a lot of sand grits and rice husks, soak in water and the husks will float then skim it all off, using a calabash bowl separate the rice grain from the sand grits until rice is free of all other debris and particles.
Transfer into a deep bowl, rinse, add enough water to soak then cover it and let it soak for 24 hours or soak overnight.
Strain out the water from the soaked rice; wash and rinse severally after soaking. Drain water, and spread out to sun dry or air dry. Mill into a smooth flowing flour with spices of ginger, cloves, and chili pepper; alternatively soaking the rice makes for a soften grain, after drying transfer into a clean mortar, add ginger, cloves and chili pepper then pound with its pestle until a fine free flowing flour.
Sieve into a mixing bowl, then place a non-stick frying pan on low heat and pour into it the sieved spicy rice flour and continuously stir to roast until it starts to give out a delicious aroma.
Once the aroma of the roasted spicy rice flour fills the air and the color changes to light gold, then remove from the heat and immediately turn out into a tray, spread it out to air cool.
On low heat place a dry saucepan, pour into it water and sugar, slowly bring to boil until sugar dissolves and water is dehydrated turning the mixture into syrupy consistency, add lemon juice to give that slight lemony flavor and tangy taste.
As soon as the sugar syrup is jelly like, put off the heat, and gradually add in the roasted spicy rice flour, stirring and folding in until all is blended in thoroughly.
Cool for just some minutes and shape into cone just like ice-cream cones or cut out fancy shapes with cake cups, biscuits cutters, or alternatively shape into a large square or round shape then slice into desired shapes.
Arrange on baking trays and toast for few minutes. If an oven is not available simply roast on the stove-top for that trademark of a golden brown patches; arrange on a frying pan, then place on low heat to roast for just a few minutes for a crispy and crumbly melt-in-the-mouth sweet deliciousness.

Rice Flour Gruel Or Kunun Shinkafa
This rice pudding or gruel is mostly served as sweet dessert, a yummy and nourishing beverage meal, light, healthy and simply superb.

Recipe Ingredients
The groundnut paste
Wet milled rice or parboiled rice
Spices of ginger, cloves, and chili pepper
Yogurt or local nono known as kindirmo in Hausa
Sugar or sweeteners of choice

Recipe Steps
The raw groundnuts de-skin or soaked in warm water for ease in removing the peels; blend into a creamy smooth groundnut paste or pound in the mortar with the pestle until creamy paste.
Transfer into a bowl, add water and mix into groundnut milk of pouring consistency; sieve into a deep saucepan and slowly bring it to boil on low heat.
Wash and soak the local un-parboiled rice for several hours, wet mill or blend into a smooth paste. Dilute with more water sieve and add to the boiling groundnut milk. Stir quickly until set into a thick pudding or gruel.
Once cooked, remove from heat and scoop into a drinking or gruel dish. Gradually introduce the yogurt or kindirmon nono, sweeten with sugar or sweetener of choice.
Serve hot or cold any time of the day.

Charmanni Rice Beverage
This drink is an absolutely refreshing sweet beverage drink pure white like milk. A must presented beverage drink at prestigious weddings for the Royal fathers, VIPs and elders all over the north-east Nigeria.

Recipe Ingredients
The local un-parboiled rice or rice flour
Yogurt or kindirmo nono
Traditional spices of ginger, cloves and chili pepper then combined and milled into spice powder
Lemon juice
Sugar to taste or any healthy substitute of sweeteners of choice
Hot water
Chill water

Recipe Steps
Combine the rice flour with the spice powder, or combine white rice with local spices and mill into a spicy rice flour.
Sieve into a large dish, add water and mix into a pouring consistency.
Pour really hot water on the rice mixture just like making the pap gruel; stir immediately and until a pouring consistency but slightly thicken.
Strain with a fine sieve, mesh or a cheese cloth 3 times or severally until no residues remains in it. If mixture is too thick, add hot water to make a really thin mixture of pouring consistency.
Then pour yogurt or nono into a mixing bowl and then turn or churn with a hand whisk until creamy smooth with no curds or lumps; pour over a sieve to strain out remaining lumps or curds in order to achieve a very smooth yogurt or nono with curdles.
Gradually add into the strained rice beverage then sweeten with sugar or sweetener of choice. Stir to combine all ingredients until sweetener and yogurt is blended in thoroughly.
Squeeze out the fresh lemon for the lemon juice, add water just a little to dilute, strain to remove piths and fibers.
Slowly add to the rice mixture in the bowl; lastly, sieve all together into a jug.
Serve chill with meals, side dishes of choice.

Rice Milk Shakes
A nutrient-dense spicy traditional rice drink, absolutely healthy, with add nutrients from fruits of choice. Serve with chunks of colorful fruits for an invitingly nourishing light drink, a great alternative to carbonated drinks that are loaded with artificial additives.

Recipe Ingredients
Freshly germinated local rice
Local raw rice
Pineapple cubes and juice
Spices of ginger, and cloves
Fresh lemon
Sugar or sweetener of choice

Recipe Steps
The germinated rice and local rice are to be soaked separately for several hours, wash and drain separately into different bowls.
In a large dish combine both rice grains and add the spices, wet milled into a thick spicy rice paste; slowly bring water to boil.
Meanwhile, divide the rice paste into four equal parts, combine and scoop 3/4 of the spicy rice paste into a smaller bowl, add little water to make a paste then quickly pour in hot boiling water and stir immediately, allow to cool for about 10 minutes. Then add the remaining 1/4 part of the spicy rice paste, stirring in gradually until all is blended in thoroughly.
Cover mixture and allow to stand undisturbed for 5-8 hours.
Place a cheese cloth over a bowl, pour rice mixture and strain through the cheese bag or cloth to remove residues and fibers.
Mix in the pineapple juice to sweeten and for vitamins, but for add sweetness add sugar or sweetness of choice, if not sweet enough because the pineapple juice is naturally sweet needing no added sugar; then stir in properly until blended in uniformly.
Transfer rice mixture into a jug and chill.
Serve chilled in tall glasses with a straw, garnish with lemon slices and pineapple cubes as a healthy refreshing light beverage.

Health Benefits Of Rice
Rice contains high loads of essential minerals like magnesium, zinc, phosphorus and folate; rice is rich in vitamin B, and if included in the diet improves the health of the nervous system. The minerals and vitamins contents of the brown rice which includes vitamin A, C, and E all aids to boost the immune system for a stronger body and protection against deadly diseases with a powerful immunity. Rice is low in sodium, fat and cholesterol; the high dietary fiber in brown rice lowers the (bad) LDL cholesterol levels that are responsible for weight gain due to insulin resistance.
The white and brown rice are both naturally gluten-free, people with celiac disease or non-celiac gluten sensitivity will enjoy it as a better option for carbohydrates.
The rice grain with its bran unpolished is brownish in color and it is more nutritious than the white rice that its bran layer has been polished away; whereas some white rice is fortified to make up for the nutrients loss. Always go for the organic brown rice for optimum health benefits; it contains fiber-rich bran, nutrient-packed germ of the carbohydrate-rich endosperm. While the white rice is stripped off its bran and germ remaining only endosperm.
The brown rice can assist the diabetic individuals blood sugar control while the white rice can spike up blood sugar much more than the brown rice, to enjoy a healthy meal simply de-starch the white rice and serve with nutrient-dense vegetables. The fiber and cellulose content is highly recommended for caloric management in diabetes health condition.
The brown rice protects against chronic diseases and prevent heart diseases; highly recommended for heart health is the brown rice that is whole grain and containing more fiber than the processed foods, brown rice contains vitamins and minerals that assists oxygen move through the blood streams while its fiber aids in lowering cholesterol hence, reducing the risk of heart diseases and strokes.
It is advisable to include brown rice that is whole grain in the diet to help reduce risk of pancreatic and gastric cancers; cancer risk reduction is possible if diet includes the brown rice which contains the phenolic, an important antioxidants that naturally occurs in plants. Antioxidants assists in reducing the risk of cancer by keeping at bay free radicals from damaging cells.
Rice is gluten-free and naturally anti-inflammatory which makes it a great food for people with celiac disease, rice in the diet will prevent gut inflammation.
Rice is great for digestive and diuretic health because of its high insoluble fiber especially in the brown rice which improves and regulate bowel movements, helping to prevent hemorrhoids that is known as piles. The high loads of fiber in brown rice helps to fight constipation, diarrhea, bloating and gastric ulcers. The natural diuretic in rice assists in removing fluid from the body for kidney health.
The brown rice help in the absorption of vital nutrients for bone health that is required to protect and prevent bone diseases.
The brown rice phenolic compound is great for the skin care as a topical solution to reduce inflammation; a natural skin care product for hair and skin.
Rice is high in excellent loads of protein; the brown and white rice can be prepared into delicious high-protein vegetarian food.

Adverse Effects Of Rice
Rice may contain the heavy metal arsenic; it can accumulate in rice in higher loads and has an adverse effects on health. It is advisable to wash rice in running water severally and cook in lots of water, drain and rinse to reduce arsenic levels.
High dietary intakes of the white rice leads to higher risks of diseases such as metabolic syndrome; the best option is to go for the brown rice if available. The diabetic patients must always monitor their blood glucose after eating the rice meal; rice must be eaten in moderation as part of a balance diet that must include vegetables and varieties of other nutrients.

Sustainability Of The Rice Crop
Rice cultivation consumes a lot of water, also a leading and amongst the highest contributor emitting 10% of the global methane emissions which is a potent greenhouse gas responsible for global warming and climate change; it is vital to adopt climate-smart practices to help avoid or avert a more devastating climate crisis.
Rice is for food security an important crop because it is a major staple for millions all over Nigeria with the very poor that can not afford it as a daily meal, still making an effort to at least serve it for their family as a special treat hence the name “Sunday To Sunday Rice”, which then turn the rice crop as one of the most important staple foodstuffs that millions of families lives on to survive.
The practice of “Climate-Smart” rice farming will help greatly in reducing and removing rice cultivation from the lists of climate change contributors; the processing of rice on farms to remove and collect together the straw and husks for other uses such as animal feeds is a step in the right direction in order to eradicate the burning of straw. The flooding method of rice cultivation can be alternated for wet and dry field methods to reduce methane emissions and cut down the use of water which can be re-directed for other much more crucial needs; it is necessary to assist the small holder rice farmers with funding to help finance a scale-up sustainable rice production practices in line with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) 2 of “Zero Hunger” which will greatly improve farming practices, increase also the yields and revenue which will aid in averting further climate risks and crisis.
Private investments in climate-smart agricultural production of the rice crops will assist to finance the poor smallholder rice farmers, subsequently directing such farmers to practice climate-smart rice farming; market linkages for the small holder farmers is another way of gaining good profits as a sustainable value chain. A switch by farmers to climate-friendly, sustainable rice production will ease the burden on natural resources; the climate-friendly rice cultivation will increase the income of small holder farmers hence improving the nutritional status of poor households all over Nigeria.

In Nigeria rice is out of the reach of the common man due to inflation caused by the Nigerian border closure to curb the importation of the rice crop into the country to promote the “eat what you produce and produce what you eat” campaign consequently leading to many poor families spending much more than they can afford in order to bring to the table of their families at least one serving of the rice meal per week, consequently leading to increase poverty and low purchasing power for other essential necessities for sustenance. It is essential for rice production self-sufficiency and sustainability to increase the profitability, engage the millions of the Nigeria youths in rice production as well as improve on the funding of small holder rice production and processing. The Nigeria rice processing techniques are inefficient consequently leading to the Nigerian processed rice that is very expensive and of low quality when compared to the imported foreign rice. In order to increase demands which may also bring down its high price, it is necessary to increase its worth, appeal, and market value by the provision of modern rice processors in a move to ensure Nigeria can also produce high quality rice; all stakeholders in agricultural production in Nigeria should invest in the availability of these modern equipment, should also be situated closer to rice processors with provisions of good infrastructures in order to reduce or remove the extra cost of transporting rice. Thus, a positive move towards food security and sustainability in rice production to promote the smallholder farmer’s income which will greatly assist in strengthening the Nigerian economy.

The richness of rice dishes that is so sumptuous and scrumptious is found in the Nigerian Kitchen, Jollof rice is part of the cultural cuisines of Nigerians; the best and authentic Jollof rice recipe is made in Nigeria any other recipe of the Jollof rice is a counterfeit!!!