Around my pantry, Stews and sauces

Basic jollof gravy

This is my basic jollof gravy recipe. It is easy, fuss free and produces a tasty base to jollof thanks to the turkey berries. I have been using this for years and have been giving this base to friends who ask  and they all like it. It contains 210g tomato puree, 2 onions, fresh tomatoes, turkey berries and bell pepper. This concoction goes perfectly with four cups of rice. You can divide the ingredients into two for two cups of rice.

For spices, you can use either curry, nutmeg, bay leaf, grounded shrimp or fish, African locust bean (dawadawa; for that distinct flavor), African calabash nutmeg, beef or chicken stock cube. It all depends on what you want.

Jollof is basically cooked with steam. Do well to reduce the liquid when cooking for a fluffy grain rice. I normally divide the proportion of water used for cooking regular rice to two or less when cooking jollof.
For instance, if it is two cups water to 1 cup rice, I will use ¾ cup to 1 cup of water. Do adjust the liquid with your brand of rice.

Basic jollof stew or gravy, very easy and convenient
Basic jollof gravy/ stew
Prep Time
5 mins
Cook Time
10 mins
Total Time
15 mins
Author: Marianjules| BiscuitsandLadles
  • 210g/ half tin cup tomato puree about 6 leveled tablespoons
  • 2 medium sized onions
  • 4-6 fresh tomatoes chopped
  • 1 - 2 tablespoons turkey berries (optional)
  • 1 green bell pepper
  • 3/4cup-1cup vegetable oil
  • Pepper as required scotch bonnet/powdered pepper/pepper flakes/red or green chillis etc
  • Salt required
Spices list
  • curry, nutmeg, bay leaf, grounded shrimp, grounded fish, African locust bean, beef cube, chicken cube etc
  • 4 cups rice
  1. Blend onions, turkey berries and pepper together, set aside. Put oil in a saucepan and set on fire.

  2. Add tomato paste, stir fry for about two minutes, add blended onions, pepper and turkey berries. Add chopped tomatoes and stir fry. Add salt and spices Cover and let simmer on high heat for about five to eight minutes.

Recipe Notes

You can use a combination of any of the spices. Some combination I like *Bayleaf, grounded shrimp, curry. *Bayleaf, beef stock cube or chicken stock cube. *Nutmeg, curry, grounded shrimp or fish. *African locust bean, grounded shrimp etc. NB: Be lenient with the stock cubes as it turn to be salty. I barely use them. I normally use 1-2  tablespoons turkey berries. You can play around with that to find what suits you. Also, you can omit the turkey berries if you do not have them. It is still tasty and delicious.

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