Locust Beans which is rightly called Iru by Yorubas, DawaDawa by Hausas and Ogiri Okpe by Igbos is a common traditional condiment in Nigeria and West Africa. The Locust beans are obtained from the seeds of the African locust tree called Parkia biglobosa. Iru flavouring is a result of the fermented locust beans. The condiment has a distinct and pungent aroma and is widely used to prepare most traditional stews, sauces, soups and other dishes like rice, native salads etc.
Once incorporated into your dish, this condiment offers the unmistakable umami flavour that enhances the taste of your cooking. Iru can be used to prepare traditional soups like egusisoup, okro soup, Ewedu soup, ogbono soup, bitter-leaf soup, Alefu soup and Efo riro. It is also the secret ingredient for dishes like Obe ata dindin, Nigerian Native Jollof rice and Ayamasestew.
It is important to wash Iru before use. Dried Iru should be stored in an air-tight container, in a cool and dry place. This will help to maintain the shelf-life of the product for several months.
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