Do you know what happens when food lovers, enthusiasts and producers countrywide come together for 7 days to eat and talk about everything Nigerian food and production? Abori, that’s what happens. From the 22nd to the 27th of July (last week) Abori, which is taken from the Hausa, Yoruba, & Igbo word for food – a local collective movement aiming to facilitate sustainable growth in Nigeria’s food system – took place. If you missed it, it’s a little hard to feel bad for you because we made all the noise on our Instagram page about it.
However, it’s a beautiful day, the sun is out and we are feeling benevolent, so we are going to tell you all about the very best moments at Abori, including pictures et al. So you can live vicariously through them for a minute before getting back to work.
The most beautiful exhibition of Nigerian food
Beyond the popular Nigerian food we all eat like Jollof Rice and Eba, and the ones local to our different tribes, if you even know them, just how much about Nigerian food do you really know? Did you know that there are tea plantations in Taraba? Or that there is coffee made in Jos? The exhibition showed that as much as we love to do so, there is so much to Nigerian food than just eating it
A short documentary on food sustainability in Nigeria
Where does your food come from? You buy the Garri you soak from Oyingbo market, but how does it get to Oyingbo market? Swallow, a documentary on Nigerian food gives insight into how climate change and poor agricultural practices are threatening our food supplies and what we can do about it. You can watch the full documentary here.
Market runs, but make it fun
If anyone told us going to the market could be fun, we’d have never believed it. We stopped by Oniru Market to pick up some catfish and tomatoes and had so much fun at it Toketemu didn’t even get mad when she got splashed in the face with catfish water.
There are farms in Lagos!
And no they are not in Epe or in Ikorodu like you’d expect. We stopped by one in the (almost) heart of the city – Lekki Phase 1. Yes, the actual Phase 1 not the one at the 5th roundabout. We spent the 2nd day of Abori touring markets and farms in Lagos and stopped by Gartner Callaway, a fruits and vegetables farm, pulling off hydroponic and organic farming right here in Lagos.
Did you know Radisson Blu grows some of their food?
Bet you didn’t and neither did we. We stopped at Radisson Blu in V.I. where their head chef, Chef Jade gave us a tour of their not so little garden where they source some of the food they use in their kitchen like lettuce and kale. He also made us a little picnic by the garden, and everything was so good we didn’t mind standing in the rain to eat it.
Item 7 on steroids
All the chefs of Abori came together on the second night to kill us with enjoyment at the welcome cocktail. Details of the night are still a little fuzzy to me because I almost ate and drank myself into a comatose. But I could never forget the goat meat tacos from @elpadrino.ng, the Ofada devilled eggs by @kitchenbutterfly and the main course, catfish by @elegbede.m which we all ate with our hands communal style.
We didn’t make it to all of the panels at Abori, but from the ones we attended, we could tell we missed out on so much valuable information. At the panel focused on plant-forward eating, we learned that Iyana Ipaja vegetable is basically a super vegetable and we’ve resolved to put it in everything we eat now because mans is trying to live to 80.