Making Suya Minced Beef Kebab
Making Suya Minced Beef Kebab: These succulent skewered kebabs are rooted in the yaji spice mix used in making suya kebabs as they are known in Nigeria or Chinchinga in Ghana.
Suya kebabs in general, made from chicken, goat meat, lamb, kidneys or liver is the quintessence of fast food in West Africa, notably Ghana, Cameroon and Nigeria. You’ll find it sizzling over hot coals at night markets, near hotels, in the premises of night clubs and bars and in West African restaurants in Europe and elsewhere.
Traditionally suya kebabs would have been grilled on an open coal fire, seasoned with spices and constantly brushed with vegetable oil as they grill and and are infused with the hot flavour of the yaji. I would often stand by to watch as my order, and they are normally big orders of 10 to 15 skewers are freshly grilled. The grilling time is normally about 5-7 minutes.
This recipe, however, calls for an oven grilled method, perhaps for those times that you can’t be bothered to get your suya from a vendor or go through the hassle of grilling on an open fire yourself. The recipe also calls for the use of minced meat, which is not common in the West African context. The spice mix that gives suya its flavour is made of groundnut, ginger, peppers and salt to taste. However as explained here – Suya beef kebab with Irio and Salatu Niebe, there is no standardised suya or yaji spice mix.
Making suya minced beef kebab is simple and the result is a brilliant composition of flavours, especially with the addition of vegetables and red onions. The meat should be ready and sizzling within 10 minutes of a full blast of the oven.