Use: A substitute for miso, dried mushrooms, bouillon cubes, MSG. Add to soups or stews, beans, rice, pilafs, egusi soup, ewedu soup or grind and add to your homemade spice mixes for a slightly salty rich umami flavor. Traditionally added to okra soup/stew, egusi soup, groundnut soup, and ayamase (a Nigerian designer stew eaten with local ofada rice).
Iru, (Parkia biglobosa) whole fermented locust beans, known as Iru in the Yoruba language of Southwestern Nigeria, Benin Republic and Togo, netetou in Senegal, sumbala or soumbala in other parts of West Africa. It is the provider of West African umami flavor, which has been used by our ancestors for centuries. This condiment adds an intense pungent and umami flavor to food bringing depth and complexity to stews, soups and vegetables. Close your eyes and imagine what the aroma from an aged pungent cheese or a really strong miso would be like, that is iru for you. It’s special and the flavor it imparts on food is something to savor. This is definitely the ingredient for the culinary adventurers out there.
Facts: Wild harvested, boiled, fermented using centuries old practices, sun dried, processed by hand.