About a thousand years ago, misskenshin made a foodwish for Suya. At the time, I had no idea what it is and after some searching found out that it is a trademark of the northern part of Nigeria; delicious bits of peanut-rubbed, spiced beef on sticks that are cooked over hot coals. I then added that foodwish to the growing list that have yet still to be made.
About a week ago, during a particularly long briefing before my afternoon shift, I started searching for Suya recipes. There are many variations to them; one calls for garlic, while another strictly forbids. After going through about half a dozen recipes, I’ve come up with my own take for Suya. It requires grated fresh ginger and minced garlic, as opposed to the powder form in many traditional recipes. I also added a bit of sugar for a little caramelization. Serve it with the tomatoes and onions, please, for it’d only be half as good without them.
[ 1 1/2 lbs beef (I used a sirloin), cut to thin slices against the grain + 1/2 cup unsalted roasted peanuts + 1/2 tablespoon paprika + 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper + 1/2 teaspoon salt + 1/2 teaspoon grated ginger + 1 clove of garlic, minced + juice of 1/2 a lime + 1 teaspoon sugar + 1 1/2 tablespoon oil + red onions, tomatoes and coriander leaves to serve ]
Soak some wooden skewers in water before you start
Make the peanut paste by adding the peanuts to a food processor and process till peanuts are finely ground. Add the spices and pulse a few seconds until evenly combined.
Add a bit of oil to bring it all together in a paste-like consistency. It is sort of dry, yet it clumps up together with the addition of the oil.
Add the peanut mixture to the beef spreading( smearing) a bit on each slice. Take your time with coating each slices, as you want all the pieces to be covered in the peanut marinade.
Leave the beef to marinate for a few hours up to overnight. Add the sliced beef on soaked wooden skewers or kabob skewers.
Preheat your grill on high. Oil the grill plate and place the beef skewers to cook.
Let cook for a few minutes, and then turn over and cook the other side. The sticks should be cooked in less than 10 minutes, depending on how thick your slices of meat are.
Serve the suya with fresh slices of red onion and chunks of tomato, garnished with cilantro leaves and a lime wedge.
Shia La Boeuf
I’ve got a confession to make.
I don’t know much about meat. I just put them in my mouth without caring what they’re all about.
Seriously though, all innuendos aside, I know next to nothing when it comes to different cuts of beef. So when I asked the house management team to buy me a piece of beef from the nearest butcher shop
because I couldn’t be bothered to drive all the way to the supermarket where they sell the labeled cuts, I have no clue what cut she came back with.
After some browsing and reading a-la exam cramming, my best guess is that this is a piece of beef chuck? Which is bad news for me because what I needed was a flank steak.
This much connective tissue would mean very tough pieces of beef and I was at a loss to what to do, except maybe get in the car and get the proper required piece. And that’s when I found this tenderizing method
which requires you to liberally salt the piece of meat and leave the salt on for 1 hour per inch thick - so a half hour for half an inch, or 2 hours for two inches, before rinsing all the salt off and patting it dry. I’m going to see how well this method works and hopefully won’t have to drag myself to the supermarket.
Oh yes, if all else fails, I have the tenderizing hammer on standby.