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Ukom Isip – Cocoyam and Seafood Plantain Pottage

If you’re neither from Cross River state or Akwa-Ibom like me, you probably wouldn’t be familiar with the Ukom Isip dish. Plantains being one of my favorite foods, either eaten as the major meal with some sauce and proteins or as sides with other foods, there was no missing out on this ‘precious’ dish. A combination of seafood and plantain for a pottage meal should get you thinking of your kitchen right about now as you read this.

To make the recipe of the week; Ukom Isip ­ cocoyam and seafood plantain pottage below are the ingredients and instructions on how to go about it.


3 ripe yellow plantains

2 over ripe blackened skin plantains

1 can of coconut milk

½ a can of Banga (palm nut) extract

Chunks of fresh cod ­ you can use any choice of fish that you like Fresh King Prawns

Fresh Ata Lilo ­ nigerian pepper mix


Stock cube

Smoked fish

1 cooking spoon of ground crayfish

Chopped Uziza ­ [optional]


  1. Add the banga extract to the pot and add a little water to dissolve it. Just a little water, remember, that coconut milk is on its way. Add the smoked fish to the extract and let it cook till it softens. The taste of this banga extract to the finished product, in fact, it is better tasted, than imagined. Trust me.
  2. Holding the peeled plantain directly over the pot, cut circles and chunks into the pot. Do the same for the over ripened plantains. When you are done, add about a cooking spoon or two of Ata Lilo
  3. Empty the entire can of the coconut milk into the pot
  4. Give it a good stir, then season and let it cook
  5. As the coconut stock starts to reduce, add the ground crayfish, so it can infuse its flavour early enough.
  6. Once the pottage starts to really thicken, stir, taste and be sure you like it, before adding the seafood and fish last
  7. Unlike with yam pottage, you won’t have to mash this at all. That’s a DK secret right there. The over ripe plantains would have disintegrated due to the heat, giving you the squishy part that you need. In fact, I probably only stirred this 3 or 4 times max, which you would do waaaay more with yam or plantain pottage, if you don’t use over ripe. That right there is what clinches it, plus, this pottage dish will taste so sweet, like you added sugar or something. Over ripe plantain, that is the secret.

Originally posted at: Dooney’s Kitchen

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