CornChaff aka Adalu – A one pot corn and beans porridge enjoyed throughout West Africa – especially Nigeria and Cameroon.
Growing up, I did not particular like or dislike cornchaff, it was just something I would eat because that was what was on the dinner table and you had no other option but to clean up your plate or risk punishment.
Simply put, I was indifferent towards it. In spite of my feelings towards corn chaff I would however enjoy it every once in a while, and it wasn’t the one that was prepared at home but my friendly neighbor’s, Aunty Christy. There was something about her method of preparation –simple, rustic but amazingly good. Fast forward to today, at home, or in parties or special occasions every one wants a serving or more.
I have tried to recreate this corn chaff, just the way Aunty Christy made it and but it never turns up like hers. How depressing! I guess she puts some extra “love” into it. This is my own variation.
Corn chaff is corn and beans that is slowly simmered together with onions, tomatoes, red oil, various spices and meat depending on preference. Smoked fish or meat adds an additional flavor to this dish.
So if you have any on hand use it by all means. Another ingredient that I use in this recipe is country onions – a nut with a pungent smell and earthy taste. This ingredient is only cultivated in certain parts of Africa particularly Cameroon, Ghana, and Congo. It is available at some African stores or online. Don’t be discouraged! You can still make absolutely delicious corn chaff without country onions, so go ahead and cheer up and start cooking!
Watch How to Make It
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- One pound dried beans any variety (sub 3 16 ounce canned beans)
- One pound corn sweet boiled corn or any kind
- 1-2 cups smoked turkey , fish, chicken
- 2 medium tomatoes diced
- 1 1/2 teaspoons minced garlic
- 1 teaspoons grated ginger
- ½ medium onion diced
- ¼ cup crayfish smoked/dried shrimp optional
- ½ - ¾ cup palm oil
- 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
- Salt and pepper to season
- 1-2 Tablespoons Chicken bouillon optional
- Rinse dry red beans and pick through and discard any foreign object.( I did not have to do this because I used the package beans, I guess2. Add black beans to a large pot covering with 3-4 inches of cold water.
- Cover and let sit overnight or 6 to 8 hours.
- Drain the soaked beans, rinse, and place the beans in a Dutch oven or pressure cooker. Follow instructions for cooking beans in your pressure cooker. It takes roughly between 8 to 12 minutes to cook. If not using a pressure cook, cook the beans for about 1 to 1½ hours until tender.
- Drain the cooked beans and add corn to the pot and stir.
- Add palm oil, onions, tomatoes, crayfish, smoked fish, garlic, ginger, smoked paprika , chicken bouillon and salt.
- Then pour about 2 – 3 cups or more of water or chicken stock bring to a boil and let it simmer for all the flavors to come together about 20 -25 minutes, stirring occasionally. You can smash the cornchaff here for a the perfect adalu , if you like it smash.
- Adjust for seasonings and serve.
Tips & Notes:
If you are press for time, use canned beans; they cut the preparation method tremendously.I stock up on canned beans when they are on sale.
You can also use the Mexican style Hominy corn in a can