” Buka stew”, the Queen Bee of Fried Stew!Buka stew is very different from our everyday fried stew in lots of ways. Buka Stew takes longer to cook compared to and requires Palm oil to achieve the authentic taste, unlike the regular fried stew which is prepared with Vegetable/Sunflower/Olive oil. With Buka Stew, you don’t need too much tomatoes, you use more of bell peppers; a mixture of red and green. It’s important to note that Buka stew does not require lots of seasoning, all you need are Salt and Bullion cubes. No Curry, no Thyme. You can include Curry and Thyme in the meat seasoning though.
4 Big Red Bell Peppers (Tatashe)
2 Big Green Bell Peppers (Green Tatashe)
1/2 Can Plum Tomatoes plum or 3 medium size tomatoes
2-3 Scotch Bonnet (Atarodo)
2 Big Onions, 1 whole, 1 chopped
Assorted meats (Roast turkey, Shaki, Ponmo, Beef, Lamb are ideal)
3 Knorr chicken cubes
Salt to taste
Wash and season your meats, boil them till tender on medium heat. Remember to boil the tougher meats for a while before adding tender meats. When that’s properly boiled, take them out and set aside. Keep the stock as we’ll be using it later.
I always start off by roasting my peppers. This helps to dry off the moisture and also adds a smokey flavour to my Buka Stew. This step is optional. If you choose to do this, preheat your oven to 200 degrees, pop the peppers in a roasting tray and roast for 30-40 minutes. Blend the peppers along with an onion and the 2 scotch bonnet to a smooth paste and set aside.
Pour an equal amount of palm oil and vegetable oil into a pan.
I can’t give a precise amount of both cooking oil as this would depend on the amount of assorted meats you’ll be using.Now add the boiled meats and fry till brown on all sides…. When that’s done, take the meats out and set aside.
Leave the oil used for frying in the pan, you need about a cup full, decant the rest if you’ve ended up with more than that. I switched pots here cos I soon realised the earlier pot would be too small for the amount of meats I had.
Now, pour in the chopped onions, fry till fragrant and translucent.
Next, add the in the blended pepper mix, 3 knorr cubes….Fry until the pepper mix loses its sourness and the oil starts to flow to the top a little.
Now, add the meat stock, you’ll need to add 2 cups to avoid using water. Water will water down the taste of the stew but if you haven’t got stock, you can use water but just a cup. Let this boil for 5 minutes.
Now add the meats….
Stir and let it cook for a further 10-15 minutes. You’ll know it’s reached its final doneness when the oil settles on the top.
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