Substitute Mushrooms for this Epic Vegan Efo Riro
Growing up my favorite stew was efo riro, that’s stirred spinach for an exact Yoruba to English translation. My favorites were made by my mom and my faux aunt, Mummy Hamed. Mummy Hamed made the most succulent of efos. At the mosque or at a party, if she was making it, I was surely grabbing a dish. This vegan efo riro has been updated to bring me back to those days.
Cooking efo riro was never an issue for me, my mom made sure I knew my way around the kitchen by the age of 10 or maybe earlier. She made me watch and assist her as I was her mini sous chef.
Efo riro cannot be rushed, in fact, the longer you allow the stew and spinach to simmer the better it will taste. Additionally, do not shy away from adding broth or water to your stew. The added liquid allows the flavors to marry.
As I transitioned (more like abruptly) into plant based eats. It was so easy for me to gravitate towards simpler meals like salads or rices. It took me some time to roll up my sleeves and start to create dishes of my culture. I grew up on Nigerian cuisine, at one point it was an almost daily thing.
My first time making plant-based efo riro was terrible. Before cooking I brainstormed everything that could go wrong. But I went for it, and it all went wrong lol. But with trial and error, we arrive here today with some delish spinach stew.
Mushrooms elevate the dish. I like to boil mushrooms with onions to create a simple broth. But when I want to get fancy, I tend to add garlic and sliced bell peppers. Erü also helped elevate the dish. Eru is also known as locust beans. The beans are a fermented mushy beans that gives any stew a much-needed umami flavoring.
Also, I'm a fan of vegetable maggi/ bouillon cubes - a must for at-home cooking. You can read more about veggie bouillon options this post.
Enjoy with rice, swallow, beans plantains or alone ❤️
- 6 cups of water
- ½ Medium Onion, sliced
- 7-9 Shiitake Mushrooms, sliced
- 2 tsp Veggie Bouillon
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 medium red bell peppers
- 1 medium onion
- 1 habanero Pepper
- 2 cloves of garlic
- 2 cups of water
- ¼ cup of vegetable oil
- 2 10oz packs of frozen spinach
- 1 tsp of salt
- 1 tsp of vegetable bouillon
- 1 tbsp of locust beans (optional)
- Boil water, then add the sliced onions and mushrooms into a pot, add salt and bouillon. Boil for 15 minutes or until mushrooms begin to get translucent
- Separate the mushrooms and onions from the broth
- Blend peppers, onions, garlic with 2 cups of water
- Heat oil over medium heat in a dutch oven pot
- Pour in blended peppers, bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low
- Let fry for 15-20 minutes or until oil starts to peek through, add salt and bouillon
- Add in the separated mushrooms, onions, and locust beans
- Squeeze out excess water from thawed spinach, add to the stew, stir
- Add 1 cup of veggie stock, cover for 10 minutes, adjust salt for taste
- Uncover and reduce heat to a simmer for another 10 minutes
Serve with fufu, rice, plantains or eat alone
Nutrition Information:Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 250