Monday, 23 September 2013


1 whole goat head 
1 Ehuru/Ehu/Erulu/African nutmeg (whatever it's called in your dialect) 
1 Teaspoon Uziza seeds 
6 utazi leaves 
2 hot peppers/habanero 
1 Knorr Cube 
4 Tablespoons palm oil 
Onion rings (JUST for garnishing)

Uziza seeds, Knorr, Pepper, Ehuru

The MAIN work in cooking isiewu is cleaning the head. So once you have that accomplished, you've pretty much done the bulk of the work. So first and foremost, I'll go over how to properly clean your goat head:
DON'T cut the goat head up in the market so that you can clean it THOROUGHLY. Just ask the butcher to remove the teeth and horns and then make a deep cut bilaterally that will crack the skull open but not separate it. Goat head needs to be cleaned whole for best results. Put the goat head in a big basin, boil hot water and pour on the head making sure the whole head (or at least most of it) is submerged in the HOT water. Allow the head soak there for a minute or two then remove from water and start work. Using a knife, scrape the ears WELL. There's usually black stuff in the ears, you want all of that out. Then scrape the tongue with the knife. You'll see whitish stuff peeling off easily. Scrape the whole mouth well. Then use an iron sponge to scrub the outer part very well. There's always soot on the skin from burning the fur off. You don't want to cook the goat head with all that black soot. Inspect the goat meat and make sure it's VERY you can start cooking.

Put the clean goat head in a pot big enough to contain it whole and cook the goat with a pinch of salt. Goat takes a while to cook so if you have a pressure pot, you'd wanna whip it out now and use to save yourself time and gas/electricity.

When the goat head is done, take it out from the water and allow it to cool down. When it's cool enough for you to handle, cut the flesh out from the bones. If your meat is well done, it should separate easily from the bones. I personally don't like fighting with bones when I eat isiewu and some commercial ones have toooo much bones. That is because they cut the head up in the market (which means it's probably not properly cleaned).
Left: Meat (for my tommy)...Right: Bones (for my dog)

After you've skinned the head, the skull should be able to be pulled apart easily too. If it's not opening, break it open with something strong like a pestle or rolling pin. Remove the brain and put in a separate bowl. Set aside.
Goat Brain

Put the pepper, ehuru, uziza seeds, 2 utazi leaves and knorr in a mortar and pound well. 
Ehuru and uziza seeds have been pounded...then pepper and utazi leaves

This is what it would look like after like 2minutes of pounding.
Ehuru, Uziza, Utazi, Pepper and Knorr pounded

Add the the brain, pound and mix very well. 
Goat brain added

Now add the palm oil and mix everything well.
Palm oil added

By now, the meat you cut out of the bones would be cold. Return it to the pot and add about 3 cooking spoons of the goat stock and heat up very well.

Strain the meat from the water and add to the sauce in the mortar. Mix everything well and dish into a smaller mortar. 
Meat added

Garnish with onion rings and the remaining utazi leaves (sliced finely)...Traditionally, isiewu is served in a small mortar which I don't have so I served mine in a plate.
Yummy, who wants to join???

ENJOY with a bottle of beer (my dad says isiewu isn't complete without or cold "mineral" haha!


  1. I'm sooooo gonna try it....

    1. Yaaay Stacy. Let me know how it goes. Please send me pics too. Thanks!

  2. Very nice'hmmmm .I wanna ve. Some oº°˚˚˚°º .pls teach me hw u make ur own fried rice plsss.

    1. Hello there, please check the archives...there's a post on fried rice recipe.

  3. This is really lovely. Welldone chef chichi

  4. #Wonderfull....nwanne ima ife aru...but okpaka (oil bean)is missing oooo....i Love d way u teach...Thumbs up dear

  5. Welldone chichi!u rilly doin a great job.just want u 2 clarify dis 4 me pls.Does ehuru nid 2 be fried/roasted 1st b4 pounding?u didn't state dat.rilly nid 2 knw quickly pls!

    1. sorry for my late reply. Been so busy all day I cudnt reply comments. If the ehuru skin has been taken off then you dont need to toast it.

  6. Really?wow!tanx so mch.dat wuld save me a lot of time as I always toast b4 pounding,tanx n God bless.

    1. Yeah, u can toast before pounding. It helps release it's flavor.

  7. Thanks chi my hubby wil feel great with this Isiewu...

  8. Chichi, thank you for sharing your make it seem very easy. I am spoiling my husband this Christmas with Isiewu but I was wondering if you plan on posting the recipe for ofe nsala and/or Urhobo starch soup soon. I really need to learn how to make soups from that region before my husband takes a second wife lol!

  9. Good morning, I got all the steps but I want to ask this, the palm oil should it be mixed with potash before pouring it or ordinary like that?

  10. Just found me a new blog love_wow! Makeup meets fine african cuisine #awesome