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Ugba (aka ukpaka) sauce is a delicacy enjoyed by the Igbo people of Nigeria. The meal is simply shredded oil bean produced by natural fermentation. It is usually eaten alongside abacha, nkwobi and isi ewu or added to soups. In this recipe, however, it is the main ingredient.


  • 200g of ugba/ukpaka
  • 4 pieces of garden egg
  • One medium sized smoked or dried fish
  • One medium sized onion
  • 2 yellow scotch bonnet peppers (or red peppers in place of)
  • 2-4 cooking spoons of red oil
  • 1 tablespoon of crayfish
  • Seasoning cubes
  • Utazi leaves
  • Shrimps
  • ½ teaspoon of black pepper
  • Salt to taste

Cooking Directions

  • Begin by washing (and deboning) the dried or smoked fish and the ugba.
  • Wash and cut the pepper, garden eggs, onion and shred the utazi leaves.
  • Blend the ugba, smoked fish, pepper and onion together. Don’t blend into a smooth consistency; just pulsate the blender twice or alternatively pound in a mortar to get that chunky consistency.
  • Wash and steam the shrimps for 3 minutes together with the black pepper.
  • Pour the oil into a pot, let it heat a little before pouring in the ugba mixture, lower the heat and add the crayfish, shrimps, seasoning cubes and salt and let them simmer for 12 minutes.
  • Add the shredded utazi leaves and diced garden eggs and bring down from heat.
  • Serve the ugba sauce with boiled or roasted yam or plantain.

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This article was first published on 20th June 2018


Amara Adanna Ogbonna is a Christian, foodie, and lover of arts. She spends most of her time on Facebook.

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