Yams are edible tubers (such us potatoes or sweet potatoes) cultivated mainly in Africa, South America, the Caribbean, Asia and Oceania. Yam flesh can be white, yellow, pink or purple and the taste ranges from sweet to bitter or it can even be tasteless. The skin is quite thick resembling three bark.
Amala has been a staple food in Nigeria for centuries. It is thought to have originated from the Yoruba people. The Yoruba people are a large ethnic group that is native to West Africa. Amala was originally made from yams, but it has since been made from other starchy products like cassava and plantains. The Yorubas usually eat amala with ewedu soup and gbegiri soup.
Amala, also known as elubo is a type of flour that is popular in Nigeria. It is made by grinding dried yams, cassava, or plantains into a powder. Amala can be used to eat a variety of different dishes, most especially ewedu and gbegiri soup.
Amala can be made of three main starchy products: yams, cassava and unripe plantain flour. The most common type of amala is made from yams, usually called Amala Isu. Amala is a whitish-light brown powder before it is prepared, and then dark brown in its dough form. Amala has an earthy and slightly bitter taste. The texture of amala is similar to that of wheat flour.
Amala is a good source of dietary fibre, which is important for digestive health. Amala is also a good source of vitamins and minerals. Some of the vitamins and minerals that amala contains are vitamin A, potassium, magnesium, and iron. Amala is also low in calories and fat. Amala helps in the regulation of blood pressure, it's dietary fibre present aids digestion, vitamins and minerals improve the immune system, and its antioxidants present scavenge harmful toxins. Amala is a good source of energy also.
Amala is made by first peeling and then cutting the yams into small pieces. The pieces are then dried in the sun or in a dehydrator. Once the pieces are dried, they are ground into a powder using a miller or a grinder. The amala powder is then sifted to remove any large pieces.
Amala can be eaten in a variety of different ways. The most common way to eat amala is with ewedu soup and gbegiri soup. To make amala, the powder is added to water while it is boiling and stirred continuously to give a consistent mix, and then packed as a dough. Once the amala is packed or dished, it can be eaten with ewedu soup, gbegiri soup and stew, which is popularly referred to as Abula.
Make sure to stir Amala continuously while cooking. If I t is not stirred constantly, it could develop lumps. So, stirring throughout the preparation is one easy hack to have a lump-free amala.
Make sure the water or the flour is not more than the other, they have to be equal to first be evenly mixed before further heating brings it to the dough stage. Most times, expertise helps one know how to measure the water and flour, but if you are not an expert, it is better to take from the boiling water, turn the flour into the water left in the pot, and then add more water immediately when you notice the powder is still more.
Make sure amala is prepared on LOW HEAT, so it does not burn through before it is even done cooking. Boiling the water can be done on medium heat though.