It is nearly corn season here! This scrumptious Nigerian spiced corn is a good way to enjoy this sweet and fresh seasonal treat.
I made up the name Nigerian spiced corn for this recipe as I felt calling it a corn stir-fry does not give a proper recognition to the Nigerian traditional ingredients which gave the dish its delightful unique taste. It is a colourful combination of sweetcorn, peppers and spinach cooked with palm-oil, fermented locust beans along with basil and spices.
In Nigerian cooking, palm oil and locust beans combination work so well together and is used is for a lot of traditional recipes. These two ingredients always remind me of my grandmother’s cooking; and was my inspiration for this corn stir fry.
This spiced corn stir-fry works well with fresh or frozen corn. If you only have dried corn, you will need to cook first before stir-frying.
Finally, the star of this recipe is the corn, feel free to vary added vegetables, condiments and spices depending on what you like or what you like. Just make sure the vegetables will cook at about the same time as the corn.
How To Prepare Nigerian Spiced Corn
I used frozen sweet corn, but if you only have corn kernels which is more likely with fresh corn; here are three easy ways to remove the kernels from the cob.
Fresh/frozen corn cooks very quickly and could easily become mushy if cooked for too long. If you’re using palm-oil like I did; you need to allow the oil to heat for some time to get rid of the raw palm-oil taste.
If using frozen corn, you need to bring out to thaw for about an hour. Pour in a colander and allow to drain before use. Or pour the frozen corn in a bowl of water and heat up in the microwave to defrost.
Nigerian Spiced Corn
- Wash the locust beans and keep aside.
- Heat the palm-oil in a pan for around 3 mins. It could get quite smoky, so makes sure windows are opened.
- Add the onions and allow to soften, then add the garlic and the locust beans. Allow to cook for a minute to two, while stirring continuously.
- Add the sweetcorn, pepper flakes, bell pepper and salt. Add two tablespoons of water to the pan. Allow to simmer for around 10 mins to allow the flavours to develop properly.
- Add the spinach and basil. Stir properly, leave for 1 min and remove from heat.