Ndolé is the national dish of Cameroon and with just a slight bit of substitution can easily be made paleo friendly. This is another dish I had never heard of or tried before, but I like new things and new challenges so after some research I was ready to try out a new recipe that I felt would be close to an original. The first major problem is that this is a soup (though more like a thick stew) made out of bitter leaf. I didn’t know what it was and at the time I made it, couldn’t find it. Most other websites and books I read suggested using spinach, collard greens, and kale as a substitute or a combination thereof. I went with the latter and was quite happy with the way it turned out. However, for those interested in the real deal I believe this is bitter leaf that can be ordered. I’m not 100% sure, but I know it’s usually dried when packaged. Next time I try this, I’ll use it and update accordingly. As with most traditional dishes, there are many variations, I’ll do my best to point them out along the way. I actually prefer this as not a soup, but rather a cooked vegetable and meat dish as you can see in the picture (where it is paired with Fufu). That said, it’s actually quite good, here we go:
- 4 Cups of Bitterleaf (or a combination of Spinach, Kale, or Collard Greens)
- 1 pound of protein cut in to bite sized pieces (I used Chicken, fish is more common)
- 2 cup of fresh shrimp (or crabs or prawns, or 1 cup dried. I buy precooked)
- 1 cup of Almond Butter
- 1 onion chopped
- 1 box of chopped tomatos
- 1 tsp rosemary
- 1/2 tsp of Thyme
- 2 cups Chicken Stock (or the stock of the protein you are using)
- 1 cup of hot water
- Coconut oil
- Sea Salt and Pepper
Wash all greens and chop into pieces. Brown the protein if you are using chicken or beef. Then add one cup of appropriate stock, turn heat to lowest setting.
Heat a 2 tablespoons of Coconut oil in a large pot over medium-high heat and cook the onions, garlic, rosemary, and thyme. Once the onions are translucent, add the tomatoes and reduce to a simmer. Cook for 5-10 minutes. Add in the greens, stir and simmer them for about 5 minutes. Add in the Almond butter, continue to stir and simmer while adding hot water to the how much of a soup consistency you want..
Continue to simmer, stirring occasionally and adding stock to get desired soup consistent (if you want it soupy), until greens are tender about 35-45 minutes.
Serve with Fufu or sweet potatoes.