An added advantage to living in Lagos as with many cities in Nigeria is experiencing food. As part of culture, food is one factor that unifies us and the fact that regardless of where you come from, you are likely to have eaten food being prepared and/or sold on the streets of the mega city.
I love food, road side food to be precise, I think it tastes better than homemade food (yes, I said it, come and beat me). I’m also very experimental with food. In this write up, I will be telling you the food or snacks I have eaten and will still eat and possible places to find them.
- TIGER NUTS a.k.a Aki Hausa, Aya, Ofuo
They are usually sold fresh or dried. I prefer the fresh ones. On two occasions, I bit on stones while eating the dried ones, now I’m extra cautious, I examine what goes into my mouth. You can find them in almost everywhere in lagos. Bus parks, bus stops. Streets of Obalende, Oshodi, Ajah and Ajah market, Eko market and the list is endless. My dad blends and drinks it as ‘smoothie’ adding coconut and some other things to the mix and I’m guessing it has nutritional benefits even though I cannot imagine drinking it….yet.
My Igbo brethren know this one. Abacha is fast becoming my favorite food. Made from dried Cassava. The best combination is the Abacha eaten with garden egg leaves, ponmo and fish with diced irodo (scotch burnet) and onions. You often see seller walking by the streets of Eko market, Obalende, Ajah and Ajah market and even VI.
Okpa reminds me of high school days. It was usually a morning snack for my teachers then and when coming to school in the morning, I often see the sellers on the streets of Obalende.
- ROASTED CORN
I can literally live on roasted corn and coconut. Roasted corn for me is not a ‘hold belle’ kind of food, it a meal. I remember some years back a friend made a comment that I will be a cheap girlfriend to maintain, buy me roasted corn and I will be alright…well, this is not far from the truth. Roasted corn is also combined with pear but coconut works best for me. You can find them in almost every street in the city, maybe even in your street. There is also the option of boiled corn too. Corn itself is rich in nutrients and the smell is what compels me to buy.
- FRIED YAM AND PEPPPER SAUCE (DUN DUN)
In high school, I used to save my lunch money to buy fried yam and dun dun on the streets of Obalende. There used to be a woman just beside St. Gregory’s College who in my opinion sold the tastiest in the whole of Obalende. The best part of this meal is the pepper sauce which is usually very spicy. Most sellers also add fried fish or ponmo to the menu.
- BOLI AND GROUNDNUT
Roasted corn could go out season, however, roadside vendor offer us an alternative that is available all year long. Boli is basically plantain which is roasted. In places in the South-South, Boli is sold with fish pepper sauce, however in Lagos, you find Boli combined with groundnut. There is arguably nowhere in Lagos you won’t find Boli and groundnut.