I recently came across a social media post where Agege bread was served at a Nigerian wedding. Some viewers saw the humour, while others commended the couple for being creative with their menu in these hard times. We all know the significance of Agege bread in Nigeria, but one would not have thought that it would become one of the best meals to serve at Nigerian weddings.
In recent times, Nigerians have become more creative in their menu during weddings. One significant factor is the current economic hardship which has forced people to serve cheaper alternative meals, different from the traditional ones we’re used to at weddings. Despite these trends, there are still the best meals you will find at Nigerian weddings, and we shall list them below.
Best meals to serve at Nigerian weddings
Here are the top 10.
1. Jollof rice
It has been written in the Nigerian constitution that jollof rice must be served at your wedding. If you’re not aware, go and check very well. Why do you think everyone looks forward to eating party jollof rice, particularly firewood-cooked jollof rice, at weddings? If you’re part of those that hope to scrape out this heavenly meal from Nigerian weddings, you better think again before your ancestors will descend on you.
2. Fried rice and chicken
After jollof rice, fried rice and chicken always come second in the best meals to serve at Nigerian weddings. The meal is almost always served with coleslaw salad on the side to make the eating experience more enjoyable. Nowadays, fried rice and chicken is always served with jollof rice because, you know, Nigerians love jollof rice.
3. Egusi soup and semo
For those whose placentas have been tied to eating swallow, egusi soup and semovita or semolina is one of the best meals on the Nigerian wedding food menu. Egusi is a popular meal in Nigeria and very easy and fast to cook. In the past, it was the cheapest food item in the market. Nowadays, it’s becoming food for the rich as the melon seeds prices have skyrocketed alongside everything else in the Nigerian market. However, when you attend a Nigerian wedding where they serve swallows, you can be sure egusi soup and semo will be one of them.
4. White rice and chicken, curry sauce
White rice and chicken, curry sauce is a delicious meal popularly served at middle-class and upper-class Nigerian weddings. This meal is so delicious that it is seriously competing with fried rice and chicken at these events. One thing, though, is it’s usually an expensive meal where one cannot afford to manage ingredients. White rice and chicken, curry sauce is one of the best meals to serve, but they’re usually reserved for special ajebo guests.
5. Small chops
Small chops are finger foods which consist of puff puff, samosa, beef or chicken kebabs, gizzards, spring rolls and fish rolls. They’re usually served as starters at Nigerian weddings. Small chops are ideal for kids or adults who don’t feel like digging into heavy meals. A combination of well prepared small chops with soft drinks will send you to heaven and back.
6. Amala and ewedu
I’m yet to attend a Yoruba wedding where amala and ewedu is not served. It must be taboo not to serve this dish. Amala and ewedu is simply one of the best meals to serve, especially to guests familiar with the cuisines of the people of South-West Nigeria. If you haven’t eaten it and you’re adventurous, I advise you to try this meal. It’s light, filling, nutritious and delicious. So when next you attend a Yoruba wedding, and you’re not offered amala and ewedu with meat the size of a baby’s head, maybe you should check if you’re a wedding crasher.
7. Moi moi
Moi moi is a steamed bean pudding and one of the best meals to serve at Nigerian weddings. The meal is usually accompanied by jollof rice. The leaf-wrapped moi moi is usually the best as it gives an earthy, delicious taste.
8. Onugbu soup and semo
Welcome to South-East Nigeria, where onugbu soup is becoming the king of all soups at weddings. Onugbu soup consists of bitter leaf, cocoyam, known as ede among the Igbos, and other ingredients. The best is made with banga, palm kernel fruit extract. Go to any Igbo wedding serving swallows, and you’ll most likely find onugbu soup. It’s one of the best meals to serve at Nigerian weddings.
9. Ofada rice
Dearest people of the world, if you have not eaten ofada rice before, consider yourself missing out on one of the greatest cuisines from the Yoruba people. Ofada rice is a spicy meal from indigenous rice grown in South-West Nigeria. It originated from a small community called Ofada in Obafemi Owode Local Government Area of Ogun State. The nearest version of Ofada rice is called Abakaliki rice, named after Abakaliki, the capital of Ebonyi State, South-East Nigeria. Ofada rice is spicy and delicious and quickly becoming one of the popular meals served at Nigerian weddings.
10. Pepper soup and agidi/eko
Pepper soup and agidi or eko is one of the best desserts to serve at Nigerian weddings. By the way, agidi or eko is the Igbo or Yoruba name for cold and congealed pap made from white corn. Pepper soup, on the other hand, is a light but very spicy soup made from different proteins. The most popular ones are assorted meats. Others are chicken, goat meat and catfish. Many Nigerian weddings reserve pepper soup for only special guests. But it’s a delicious meal that should not be missing from your food menu if you can afford it.
Nigeria is blessed with different cuisines to enjoy at weddings. It’s normal to look forward to the food at Nigerian weddings because they’re always delicious. At least for me, a wedding is not complete without any of these meals. Take them with drinks such as palm wine, cocktails, soft drinks, beers, wines, among others, and your taste buds will be bursting with flavours you won’t forget in a hurry.