Egusi sauce is a staple in many Western and Central African countries. The egusi seeds are not from the sweet, fleshy watermelon we know but come from any number of melons or gourds native to those regions. Egusi sauce is thickened with roasted ground or pureed Egusi Seeds, giving it a smoky, nutty character.
Egusi Soup, thickened with flour ground from seeds of a species of Cucurbitaceae (gourds, melons, pumpkins, and squashes) is common in Western Africa. In Central Africa, the Egusi Soup becomes a sauce, which is served over boiled vegetables or rice, or grilled chicken, fish, or meat.
- palm oil or any cooking oil
- 1 onion, chopped
- 2 tomatoes, chopped (or 1 tablespoon tomato paste)
- 1 hot chilli pepper, cleaned and chopped (optional, to taste)
- 2 cups egusi, roasted and ground very finely
- salt, black pepper, cayenne pepper or red pepper (to taste)
- Combine all ingredients except egusi in saucepan.
- Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for several minutes.
- Stir in egusi. Add water to make a smooth sauce.
- Simmer for several more minutes.
- Serve over boiled rice, yams, plantains, or grilled chicken, fish, or meat.