There’s a saying that Nigerians are passionate about food. If you don’t believe me, read how these Nigerians regard foods that have their mumu buttons.
“I’ll use the last money in my bank account to buy akara”
— Tega, 23
My mumu button food is probably akara. I don’t eat it often, but when the craving comes upon me, I can decide to trek just so that I can use my last ₦50 to afford even just one ball. I’ve always loved akara because it’s a meal that requires a lot of suffering to make. So eating it feels like a reward. Back in secondary school, I used to go early to the dining hall so I could steal one or two extra akara before anyone came in.
“I love black soup because it takes me back to my roots”
— Tunde, 25
Black soup is one of the traditional soups of the Ondo people; they call it Marugbo. Eating it keeps me connected with my roots in some way, especially since I don’t get to eat it often. When I eat the meal, I feel like I’m in heaven. I’ve been in love with eba and black soup since I was a child. The very first time I tried it was when my grandma came to visit and she cooked the soup.
“I’ll sell everything I own for fried turkey”
— Sheriff, 22
Give me fried turkey and I’ll sell my dad’s house and give you the money. When I was a kid, we ate jollof rice and turkey every single Sunday. I think this is why I currently have an obsession with it. I can’t think straight once there’s any piece of Turkey in sight.
“I love any meal that’s put in front of me”
— Bolu, 24
I‘m a foodie, so I don’t have one particular meal that has my mumu button. I just love food. It’s funny now because, apparently, I didn’t eat so much as a kid. I guess I’m trying to make up for those lost years. Also, I have this thing where I like certain foods more at different periods. Like now, I’m super into soft-serve ice cream. The best part is eating food I didn’t cook or buy. Just send me food and I might fall in love.
“I can eat eba and oha soup for breakfast, lunch and dinner”
— Mimi, 24
Growing up, my mum made oha soup a lot in the house. We loved the soup so much that we ate it with eba any chance we got. It didn’t matter whether it was breakfast, lunch or dinner time. If you want to kidnap me, use eba and oha soup.
“I volunteer to fry dodo so that I can eat it unhindered”
— Maxwell*, 23
Plantain has my heart and soul. I mean, who doesn’t love those golden-brown slices of joy? You can either boil, fry, or roast plantain and all of them bang in their own different ways. When I was younger, I always volunteered to be the one to fry dodo so that I could steal from them as I was frying. Offer me plantain and we instantly become best friends.
“I love anything that’s fried in a pan”
— Chibuike, 26
I really like anything stir-fried. It could be chicken, pasta, or even just plain vegetables. But my absolute favourite is stir-fried noodles. I don’t believe in cooking simple noodles, I like to add a bunch of ingredients and spices inside, then toss everything in a pan. I prefer to do this with Onion Chicken pack because of the flavoured oil that comes with it. I don’t know what’s inside that thing, but I’m obsessed with it. I make stir fry at least three times a week; it’s my go-to meal.
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“Pasta is my comfort food”
— Ifoghale, 22
Pasta has my mumu button. I really became obsessed with it last year, when I discovered a restaurant in Benue state that made top-tier seafood pasta. It was one of the highlights of my stay there. I specifically like spaghetti; it’s basic but totally worth it. Whenever I feel down, I cook spaghetti because it’s my comfort food.
“Indomie saved my life in uni and now I’m obsessed”
— Adeola, 25
In university, I became obsessed with Indomie. I started eating it a lot because it was the easiest and fastest thing to make. Anytime I came back from class and I was hungry but tired, I’d make noodles. But it wasn’t just the convenience of it for me. I really liked Indomie because I could add as many ingredients as I wanted to it, to get different kinds of recipes. Each time, I felt as if I was eating a different meal, and that was why I never got tired. Till now, I’ve been obsessed, and I can’t help it.