The Restaurant Jolloff Etcetera in Maryland triumphantly launches as the FIRST to serve typical Nigerian breakfast!
Culture includes everything that makes a people distinct from any other group.
There are just somethings that can never change within a culture such as the language, dressing, music, work, arts, religion, dancing and oh of course food amongst others. In addition to what defines a culture, one can easily include people’s social norms, taboos and values.
In exploring the African culture for instance in light of Western culture of Europe or Oriental culture of the Eastern world, when it comes to identifying elements of uniqueness often described as “cultural variations”, one cannot ignore the fact that globalization has made the world a much closer unit—meaning we all absorb each other’s culture when we go to eat at an African restaurant, Chinese restaurant, or an Indian or Latin restaurant.
We share plates and taste food from other cultures acquiring a palate that leaves us deciding if we would remain adventurous or stick to what is ours.
As I continue the tour of documenting African eats and the triumph stories of the people behind them, it dawns on me that BREAKFAST as a concept for dining is a lost ingredient when it comes to appreciating eating from another culture.
What do Indians eat for breakfast? Is it all spicy?’ What’s a staple Korean breakfast or a Japanese breakfast? When it comes to global breakfast ideas or restaurants serving them, what do we really know?
When I visited this restaurant in Hyattsville Maryland as my next discovery destination and learned that they were reinventing morning meals by offering a Native Nigerian Breakfast on their menu beginning from that week, it was the most refreshing concept I’d heard about. Breakfast is not the first thing you think of when dining at an African restaurant. Is the final frontier of an African (Nigerian) palate, Breakfast— as it is for the American palate?
Come lunch or dinner, Americans venture to taste the world but for breakfast they stick to staples like Pancakes, Greek yogurt with berries and granola or eggs, bacon with toast and of course coffee. For Nigeria, being colonized by the British means a non-native breakfast menu is very similar to a British/ European breakfast menu- the go to is the proper fry-up that includes bacon, sausages, tomatoes and other condiments.
The restaurant Jolloff Etcetera on 7463 Annapolis Rd Hyattsville, Maryland isn’t offering the Nigerian-British breakfast most Nigerians generally would option for in their homes, but they are offering the Native Nigerian Breakfast which is virtually impossible to prepare every morning in your homes if you were to opt for it as a daily option. Impossible because Breakfast, like other meal times in Nigeria, often has a ceremonial feel to it.
Not many have such time in the morning to cook a proper native breakfast unless it is like a Christmas holiday where you have the entire family vacationing together and everyone joins in the kitchen to prepare a full savory morning meal. If you’re local, this new menu concept at Jolloff Etcetera could be the new Spring in your food life.
Jolloff Etcera’s Guide to Native Nigerian Breakfast
Restaurateur Obi Onuoha says he has a vision for bringing the Nigerian restaurant to a global standard. While they offer typical Nigerian dishes on their menu like the popular Naija Jollof to the Pepper-soup, Egusi, Ogbono, Banga soup and so on;
he says being only established since 2013 that he has a vision for a continental Nigerian restaurant in more interesting locations like DC or even New York, improving their customer experience up to par and touching up on concepts like the inclusion of the Native Breakfast to other unique concepts—— he is vigorously working on behind the scenes.
He offers to showcase four sample dishes they will be serving on their menu, which gives us a fun look into what a staple Native Nigerian Breakfast is!
EWA AGOYIN WITH AGEGE BREAD
This is mashed beans and palm oil sauce. For this dish, it is all about using the right peppers and enough palm oil as appropriate for achieving the authentic Ewa Agoyin sauce taste.
Restaurateur explains that the peppers used for the sauce are dried bell peppers, Cameroon peppers and dried pepper seeds which are dried seeds of red chilli peppers. To achieve the gritty/crunchy Agoyin sauce taste, you’ll need to allow your onions burn a little while frying. The incorporated pepper seeds, when fried, also help to achieve the gritty texture.
OGI WITH MOI MOI OR AKARA
At Jolloff Etcetera, you can get Ogi with either Moi or Akara for breakfast. One of the most common breakfasts is Ògì— a porridge made from maize, usually served with evaporated milk. Its fermented typically made from maize, sorghum, or millet.
Traditionally, the grains are soaked in water for up to three days, before wet milling and sieving to remove husks. The filtered cereal is then allowed to ferment for up to three days until sour. It is then boiled into a pap, or cooked to make a creamy pudding.
Moi Moi and Akara are both are made from ground bean paste; akara is fried in oil, and moi moi is wrapped in leaves or foil and then steamed.
Akara is a dish made from peeled beans formed into a ball and then deep-fried in palm oil. Akara, also known as Bean Cakes, Bean Balls, Bean Fritas is a typical Nigerian breakfast recipe made with beans.
Moi Moi (also Moin Moin) is a great dish accessory in Nigeria that can accompany staples like Jolloff Rice, Fried Rice, Fried Plantain but for breakfast best to be accompanied by Custard or Akamu (Pap, Ogi) . One of the exciting things about this dish is its shape and presentation owing to the mold it is poured into prior to cooking.
BOILED YAM WITH VEGETABLE FRIED EGGS
They say Egg Sauce is the best thing that ever happened to Boiled Yam.
Getting to try out this particular dish at Jolloff Etcetera was a delight! Yam and egg sauce is one of the breakfast staples in Nigeria— mainly a weekend breakfast. Chopped peppers and onions, salt, seasoning, curry and thyme are some of the spices used to make the sauce. The dish brought a certain nostalgia for me.
When you visit, say HELLO from #Africa’striumph
ADDRESS: 7463 Annapolis Rd Hyattsville, Maryland, 20784. https://www.jolloffetcetera.com/