Recipe: How To Prepare Sierra Leone Pemahum

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Pemahum means ‘put it on top,’ a statement used to describe the process of preparing this recipe. To prepare the sauce, you must first place nearly all the ingredients on top of the rice and let it cook for a few minutes. 

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Low-income individuals typically prepare it for breakfast before going about their normal daily routines. This is due to its low cost and ability to provide a wholesome diet without the use of meat or fish. However, everyone now enjoys pemahum for its nutritional value. 

Pemahun is served with rice, preferably local red or brown rice,

Below is the process.

People Also Read: Recipe: Seswaa– A Traditional Beef Dish from Botswana

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How to Prepare Pemahum

Recipe: How To Prepare Sierra Leone Pemahum
Sweet Potato Leaves. Image source: SGWetMarket  licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

Ingredients

  • 2 cups of local rice
  • ½ tbsp Salt, to taste
  • ½ cup of red palm oil 
  • Water (for boiling rice)
  • 2 Maggie Stock Cubes
  • 600g of fresh potato leaves
  • 6 large Scotch bonnet peppers
  • 6 big jakato (white garden eggs)
  • 150g of ogiri (Fermented sesame seeds)

Instructions

  1. Wash the potato leaves thoroughly under a running tap and let them drain because potato leaves absorb lots of water. 
  2. Do the same with the garden eggs and pepper. Cut the garden eggs into two each and set aside.
  3. In a big nonstick cooking pot, bring water to a boil.
  4. Add a pinch of salt (optional)
  5. Rince the local rice and add to the boiling water
  6. Cover the pot and allow the rice to cook
  7. While the rice boils,  shred the potato leaves 
  8. When the rice absorbs almost ⅔  of the water, add the garden eggs and hot pepper
  9. Add the ogiri wrapped in banana leaves. (Some people wrap them in polythene bags, but it’s unhealthy to do that.) Some also just pour in on top of the potato leaves.
  10. When the water on the rice is almost dry, add the potato leaves and simmer on low heat for 3 minutes. 
  11. When you notice the banana wrapped around the ogiri is shrank, it means the ogiri is cooked. 
  12. Remove all the other ingredients on top of the rice and set them aside. The potato leaves leave behind a greenish look on top of the rice.
  13. You can either blend the jakato or garden eggs and pepper or use a spatula to mash them roughly. 
  14. Bring the palm oil to boil on medium heat in a separate nonstick pot.
  15. Add the mashed garden eggs and pepper.
  16. Add the ogiri, some water, and cover the pot.
  17. Allow it to simmer for 3 minutes, then add the maggie stock cube and potato leaves.
  18. Stir the sauce to make sure that everything is evenly distributed. 
  19. Taste and adjust salt and seasoning.
  20. Cover the pot and cook on low heat for 2 minutes. 
  21. Semahum is ready!
  22. Serve with boiled rice.

Tips for Serving Pemahum

  • Serve in a large bowl to share with family or friends. Eating from the same bowl is regarded as bonding across Africa. 
  • Eating Pemahum with your hands is always advisable to enjoy every nutrient.
  • You can also serve with any local drink of your choice.

Nutritional Facts of Pemahum

  • The potato leaves are rich in potassium, dietary fiber, iron, vitamin A, calcium, vitamin B6, magnesium, vitamin C, and protein. The nutrition in this leafy green vegetable can only be compared to that of spinach. 
  • Although a fruit, jakato, or garden egg, is cooked like a vegetable. This white fruit is rich in potassium, vitamin C, proteins, dietary fibers, iron and magnesium
  • You can get significant Vitamin E in the palm oil used to prepare Pemahum, including carotenoids. The health of your blood, brain, and skin, as well as your vision and reproductive system, depends on vitamin E.
  • Scotch bonnet peppers and others have a lot of vitamin C– ideal for your immune system. It also contains vitamin A, iron, vitamin B, carotenoids, niacin, riboflavin, dietary fiber, flavonoids, and magnesium.

People Also Read: Recipe: Explore the Traditional Delele of Zambia

Video Credit:  Antoinette George

Antoinette is a Sierra Leonean who dedicates her YouTube channel to covering food recipes, lifestyle, interesting vlogs, and beautiful sit-down videos of Sierra Leone.

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spotcovery-Pemahum-how-to-cook-pemahum

Sierra Leone Pemahum

Sierra Leone
Recipe: How To Prepare Sierra Leone PemahumSedi Djentuh
Pemahum means ‘put it on top,’ a statement used to describe the process of preparing this recipe. To prepare the sauce, you must first place nearly all the ingredients on top of the rice and let it cook for a few minutes.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 day 45 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Course Breakfast
Cuisine African, West African
Servings 6
Calories 35 kcal

Equipment

Nonstick Cooking Pot

Ingredients
  

  • 2 cups of local rice
  • ½ tbsp Salt to taste
  • ½ cup of red palm oil
  • Water for boiling rice
  • 2 Maggie Stock Cubes
  • 600 g of fresh potato leaves
  • 6 large Scotch bonnet peppers
  • 6 big jakato white garden eggs
  • 150 g of ogiri Fermented sesame seeds

Instructions
 

  • Wash the potato leaves thoroughly under a running tap and let them drain because potato leaves absorb lots of water.
  • Do the same with the garden eggs and pepper. Cut the garden eggs into two each and set aside.
  • In a big nonstick cooking pot, bring water to a boil.
  • Add a pinch of salt (optional)
  • Rince the local rice and add to the boiling water
  • Cover the pot and allow the rice to cook
  • While the rice boils, shred the potato leaves
  • When the rice absorbs almost ⅔ of the water, add the garden eggs and hot pepper
  • Add the ogiri wrapped in banana leaves. (Some people wrap them in polythene bags, but it’s unhealthy to do that.) Some also just pour in on top of the potato leaves.
  • When the water on the rice is almost dry, add the potato leaves and simmer on low heat for 3 minutes.
  • When you notice the banana wrapped around the ogiri is shrank, it means the ogiri is cooked.
  • Remove all the other ingredients on top of the rice and set them aside. The potato leaves leave behind a greenish look on top of the rice.
  • You can either blend the jakato or garden eggs and pepper or use a spatula to mash them roughly.
  • Bring the palm oil to boil on medium heat in a separate nonstick pot.
  • Add the mashed garden eggs and pepper.
  • Add the ogiri, some water, and cover the pot.
  • Allow it to simmer for 3 minutes, then add the maggie stock cube and potato leaves.
  • Stir the sauce to make sure that everything is evenly distributed.
  • Taste and adjust salt and seasoning.
  • Cover the pot and cook on low heat for 2 minutes.
  • Semahum is ready!
  • Serve with boiled rice.

Video

Nutrition

Serving: 1gCalories: 35kcalCarbohydrates: 22.7gProtein: 4gFat: 0.3gPotassium: 518mgFiber: 2gVitamin A: 1028IUVitamin C: 11mgCalcium: 37mgIron: 1mg
Keyword Pemahum, Potato Leaves Sauce
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Sedi Djentuh
Sedi Djentuh
Hey, Sedi here, a content writer. She's fascinated by the interplay between people, lifestyle, relationships, tech and communication dedicated to empowering and spreading positive messages about humanity. She's an avid reader and a student of personal weekly workouts. When she's not writing, Sedi is busy advocating for plastic-free earth with her local NGO.

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