Achu and Yellow soup is a typical African Traditional dish of the Ngemba clan in Cameroon. It is a dish so abundant in the various food nutrients. This traditional dish, because of its richness, has become so popular that it is now eaten all over the country and in many countries of the world. The process to come out with a tasty dish of Achu and Yellow Soup is in three stages; the preparation, the actual pounding, and the Yellow soup preparation.
The main ingredients for preparing Achu and Yellow soup are coco-yams, banana, red palm oil, cow meat and skin, salt, magi, Limestone (Niki), achu soup spices, and pepper. The pepper is only for those who eat it. In my village setting, the coco-yams and banana are harvested from the farm while the other ingredients bought from the market or store. Of course, in a city, one has to buy all the parts. The traditional plates (banana leaves) are also harvested and warmed over a glowing fire then split in rectangular forms ready for use in the second stage to tie the achu (coco-yam fufu) itself. In a city, we use a dish in place of the leaves.
The coco-yam and banana are washed and put in a sizable pot, beginning with the coco-yams, then the banana, and finally some tender or young coco-yams at the top. The pot is then covered with banana leaves or foil paper and allow to cook until the coco-yam and banana are soft enough for pounding.
Pounded coco-yam and banana
When the coco-yam and banana are well cooked,
- Firstly we peel the tender or young coco-yams and pound.
- Then pound the banana and mixed with the pounded coco-yam. This is done in about two or more batches depending on the quantity. Each batch is mixed up with the previous one to keep it continuously soft and smooth. At the end of this stage, all the pounded coco-yam and banana are well mixed until it is smooth to form a dough.
- Water is added if the dough is too tight; otherwise, it is just fine.
- The softer dough or call it fufu is then removed and tied up in bundles known as bundles of achu.
While the coco-yam and banana are being pounded, the meat and skin is also cooking on the fireplace.
- Firstly, slice the meat and skin and wash it thoroughly.
- Secondly, put in a pot and add enough water, salt, and magi.
- Then, allow to cook until it is soft enough. This can take about thirty to forty-five minutes, depending on the type.
- Mixed the red palm oil and “Niki” in a bowl or pot till it turns pure yellow.
- Drain the stock from the meat and pour it in the bowl or pot. Use a second bowl to mixed the soup well by turning it from bowl to bowl till it is pure yellow and thick enough. You can also use a blender to blend if you have one otherwise continue mixing for about two to three minutes, depending on the quantity.
When these three stages are accomplished then, Achu and Yellow Soup is ready for the table. Yummy!
Considering its ingredients, Achu and Yellow Soup is very rich in
- Carbohydrates from the coco-yams.
- Proteins from the meat.
- Vitamins from red palm oil and vegetable.
- Fats oils from the red palm oil.
- Calcium from the yellow soup
- The yellows soup also fixes minor stomach upsets.