BVG features: 9jaFoodie- Modern African Cuisine

I had the pleasure of talking with 9jaFoodie of Modern African Cuisine which features African food with a modern flare.

Tell us a little bit about yourself
I am a Revenue Analyst by profession, an Economist by education, a CPA(CMA) in training and a food lover by blood malfunction (my love for food is seriously abnormal)

Stew (Obe Ata)
How did you first become interested in food?
As a little girl, I used to watch my mum slave away in the kitchen, literarily, she spent most of her day there, I didn’t like it, I wanted something different for my adult life, that got me interested in food experimentation, prepping and time management.

Tell us a little bit about your blog and what inspired you to be a food blogger?
My blog is called “Modern African Cuisine; M.A.C”, it features mostly Nigerian recipes; ultimately I want it to feature food from all over the continent. I had always cooked, taken pictures and all, I decided to start blogging when I saw a article on West African Cuisine that said “Many dishes are similar to a stew, with poorer quality lamb and goats being used as protein” I was appalled by it, and I realized there are a lot of things people are ignorant about Africa, our food just happens to be one of them, So I decided to start a blog to educate and inspire African COOKS.
Otong Soup

Your blog features mostly Nigerian cuisine, what other types of cuisine do you enjoy cooking?
I enjoy Food from all over Africa, I also love Asian cooking techniques, I think they have done exceptionally well in making food interesting.

Home made chinese - Chicken in Black Bean sauce

How often do you cook and who ends up eating all the obviously delicious meals featured on your blog?
I cook often, 2-3 times a week depending on the season. I have 2 very supportive roommates who I use as tasters (shout out to Chi n Ada).

What would do say has been the most difficult meal you have ever cooked?
Difficult..humm… Gbegiri (Yoruba soup made from beans) there are just too many things that can go wrong.
Gbegiri and Ewedu

What is your most favorite ingredient to cook with and why?
Basil!!! I LOVE fresh thai basil. It brings out the best in most dishes

What is your least favorite ingredient to cook with and why?
Rapini; I just never get It right

If you could be a spice/seasoning which would you be and why?
Lol…. I will be salt; it’s very essential and it defines most dishes. You love to hate it but you can’t. Yeahhh… I think salt is badass.

If you could be a dish, which would you be and why?
I will be a bowl of edikangIkong; because my MrMr loves it
Edikiang Ikong

Do you agree that food is the way to a man’s heart?
Lol…well, I don’t think so, I think good personality trumps anything else; it doesn’t hurt to cook well though. I mean, you can always get a personal Chef if you are not so good in the kitchen, but there is nothing like a “personal personality”

Where did you learn how to cook?
I learn from everyone around me.

Contrary to most Nigerian cooks, you are very good at providing detailed recipes. How is that? You know our mothers never taught us how to cook with detailed measurements of ingredients.
Lol.. Good point, we never used measurements back home. But my goal is to make cooking easier and less time consuming, so I keep that in mind when I cook, so as to prevent mistakes and re-dos, I try to provide the best measurements possible

Given the fact that you don’t live in Nigeria; do you have difficulty obtaining ingredients for your dishes? Do you find that you often have to substitute ingredients? How do you work around that?
Yes, its difficult sourcing out ingredients, I discovered that we use very similar ingredients with the Chinese, often called something different though, so I frequent my local Asian store often with the botanical name of what I am looking for in mind. We also have an African store in the city.
Moi-moi (cooked in banana leaf)

You have featured some drink recipes, how much have delved into making drinks? Is it something you see yourself really getting into?
I love Mixology, it will most likely be my first capital venture into the commercial food market. As work life balance/time becomes so essential, food on the go becomes increasingly relevant. I think so much can be done with all the fresh/seasonal fruits and vegetables that we have in the tropics, I see a lot of potential in it.
Eko Float

What does food mean to you?

What is your idea of a perfect meal?
Anything with MrMr, I don’t have a favorite food….. Heaven on earth will be a “LOCAL” food tasting trip all over Africa/Asia; I will love to just go around trying street food
Home made Soy milk and Banana Bread

Who is your favorite foodie and why?
I really like the work of Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto, he has a way of working with food to translate them back to his Japanese root, I think knowing where you came from is very important for any ethnic chef. I also admire the presentation skills of Chef Ola  at Alhaji’s cuisine

What has been your most memorable meal?
Fall 2009, I made a beef tenderloin with spring beans. Still the best thing I ever ate, I didn’t write down the recipe and I never want to recreate the meal

Advice, tips and suggestions for anyone looking to becoming a food blogger.
I am very new at food blogging; my blog is merely a year old so I don’t see myself as someone who is necessarily in a position to give advice lol. I do think you have to have your own style thou, it’s very important to have your own identity in the food world.

For detailed recipes visit Modern African Cuisine 
Remember to nominate your favorite blogs for the Nigerian Blog Awards.
*9jaFoodie - For best food blog ;)*