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Garri: Saving Nigerian lives since 1960

Garri is a granular flour, usually creamy white, prepared from fermented fresh cassava tubers (one of West Africa's most important crops). After refining into the final product - Garri comes off with a little fermented flavor and a somewhat sour taste. Traditionally, it has always been less expensive than other carbohydrates like rice and maize. You know, it has really been saving lives in Nigeria since the 60s.

Garri, a staple of Nigerian cuisine known to the ignorant as "poor man's meal," has been saving lives (particularly students') for as long as we can remember.

So many products - garri, fufu, animal feed, alcohol, starches for sizing paper and textiles, amongst others can all be made from cassava. Cassava was originally a South American crop that was brought to Nigeria by Portuguese invaders during the slave trade in the 16th century. Its worth wasn't fully realized until slaves began to return in the 19th century, bringing with them new production processes.

However, talking about the live-saving food. Garri comes in a variety of textures, which can be classified as rough, medium, or smooth. Each one is utilized for a specific food type. Garri can be soaked in cold water (in which case it sinks to the bottom), mixed with sugar or honey, and sometimes roasted peanuts or groundnuts, and evaporated milk are added, in this case, it can be enjoyed as a snack, cereal, or light supper. For soaked garri, 3 times the amount of water is required. In this soaked form, it can also be enjoyed with bean cake (akara and moi moi).

Garri can also be consumed dry, without the addition of water, but with the addition of sugar and roasted peanuts. Garri is also eaten as a side dish with soft cooked beans and palm oil in its dry form.

Garri is often prepared into dough by soaking it in hot water and then kneading it. It's served with thick, green vegetable soups, melon seed stews, peanut stews, or beans. The Yoruba call this “eba”, and yes o…some enjoy it in this form with beans, I have never tried this though. Oh well, garri really saves lives in various forms.

Smooth garri (also called as lebu in Yoruba) can be spiced up with pepper and other spices. To soften up, a small amount of warm water and palm oil is added and stirred with the hand. This garri is typically served with fried fish. I’m sure you have always known this food to be a livesaver but reading this must have further established that fact that garri is a legend of so many foods.

People enjoy this legendary cereal in different ways, some like the pure unadulterated form with just cold water, sugar, and some roasted groundnuts, while others, like me, enjoy it with milk, just like any other breakfast cereal. Sugar, garri, powdered milk, and water (elite combination I promise). The Ijebu Garri type is the ideal to use for this soaked Garri 'cereal.' It's sour, so the sugar, or sugar plus milk, as the case may be, gives it a delectable sweet and sour flavor. Haha, my aunt gave me this pro tip, and there is absolutely no regret whenever I try it.

Don’t lie, has garri not saved you so many times, easy to make, and also in different variations to enjoy. Legendary dish if you know how to enjoy it.

I hope you enjoyed this article, and have dropped the notion that this is a poor man’s meal. You can drop your opinions in the comment section, like, follow and share too.

Content created and supplied by: Peacefeelssmart (via Opera News )

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