Tuesday, 20 May 2014

Èfó Wòròwó: Solanecio Biafrae

Worowo as popularly called amongst the Yoruba tribes in Nigeria. This vegetable is also used in Ghana, Benin, Sierra Leone and other parts of Nigeria. As popular as this vegetable is, there seems to be no English name for it (if you do know it, please do comment below and enlighten us all). However, me being me, I found a botanical name for it 'Solanecio Biafrae'.

This vegetable has a beautiful scent attached to it; and this scent alone adds a delicious aroma to any soup, therefore, it can be cooked with just tomatoes, peppers and onions, and still would make an excellent dish. It also does have other benefits to it. The leaf extract is commonly used for medicinal purposes, as it is used to stop bleeding from cuts and injuries; and is also used for the treatment of sore eyes. It is also said that the leaf is also used to treat cough, rheumatic pains and heart troubles. The Yoruba culture also believes that the leaf can be used to ward off smallpox. 

As said earlier, this vegetable can either be cooked on its own with peppers, onions and tomatoes; or can be used as alongside with Egusi (Melon Seeds). So here is a recipe of how I cooked it with Egusi. 

Onion (1 bulb)
Ground pepper (1 tablespoon)
Palm oil (2 cookingspoonful)
Knorr cubes (2 cubes)
Dried blended Egusi (3 handfuls) 
Mackerel (1 medium-sized)
Water (600ml)
Locust beans: Iru (1 teaspoonful)
Worowo (2 handfuls)
Smoked Turkey (4 pieces)
Crayfish (1 handful)
  1. Wash and cut the fish into 4 pieces, remove the inners and clean.
  2. Add water to a medium-sized pot and add the fish to start cooking.
  3. Boil the fish for 5 minutes and add salt to season. 
  4. Add the smoked turkey and bring to boil for 2 minutes.
  5. Add the ground pepper and palm oil, let simmer on medium heat. 
  6. Add the locust beans, and the knorr cubes for seasoning. 
  7. Add the dried and blended egusi, cover the pot and let cook for 5 minutes on low heat. 
  8. The egusi should now be forming small balls, or thickening.
  9. Add some salt and taste.
  10. Add the vegetable and let simmer on low heat for 3 minutes (maximum).
  11. Voila!!! Food is ready

N.B: This Soup can be served with rice or any swallow (eba, amala, pounded yam, ground rice, semolina etc)

Here is a picture of the Plant, just in case you cant remember what it looks like:



madz280 said...


Unknown said...

good, keep it up.

Chizzy said...

I just finished my period and after 2 days eat Worowo. I started bleeding afresh. What effect does it have on the reproductory sysrem?

Unknown said...

Hi Chizzy. So sorry to hear that. I know of no effect to the reproductory system.. have you been to the doctor's? because it might be an allergy... I do hope you are much better now though. x

Unknown said...

I was born and brought up with worowo from ancient city of Ile-Ife,Osun State, Nigeria. Worowo is also synonymous to Ile-Ife. We eat it fresh(i.e directly from farm everyday) and all this period nothing like sickness or any forms of Illnesses or diseases. We look naturally healthy and fresh.
I remember vividly our mothers use to take much of it during the pregnancy for easy delivery without any aid of Doctor. In fact, they use to deliver in the village without bothering to come to the city for medical assistance during delivery.
More so, Worowo grows mostly within Cocoa plantation area, we call it cocoa bush, that is, before you weed two different bushes within cocoa area you should have met with worowo in more than 5 times.
In another development, sometimes last year, USA gave some millions of Dollar to Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife to plant and conduct research on Worowo as being declared as one of the most nutritional vegetables in the world.
Adeyemi, J. Adebayo
From Lagos.

Anonymous said...

Apart from the delicacy, It is very effective for persons with stroke. Aside from eating, the raw leaves could be mixed with the local soap (black soap known in yoruba as ose dudu/ose abuwe or ose oyo) for bathing such persons morning and night. This I am very sure of. It works

Unknown said...

It's so delicious, I just ate it with a bottle of smoothie

ADE said...

When can see it to buy in lagos

Unknown said...

Great Post. I was in Ibadan, Oyo State sometimes in September 2019 while I came across the vegetable. This has led me to look out for its health benefits.

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