One on One

New Soul Kitchen 208

Source: CLEO TV

Chef Essie Bartels serves up a simmered peanut butter stew with chicken and West African yams. Plus, she reveals the specialty spices she adds to bring out the aromatics in this dish.


  • 1 pound jumbo prawns, cleaned
  • 1 pound organic chicken
  • 1 fresh mackerel to be smoked
  • 1 ½ cups of water/vegetable or chicken stock
  • 1/3 smooth peanut butter paste
  • 3 tablespoon of freshly blended garlic
  • 1 tablespoon of freshly blended ginger
  • 2 tablespoon of freshly blended shallots
  • 1 tablespoon of Salt
  • 1/4 cup of coconut oil
  • 3 habanero or scotch bonnet pepper
  • 1 can tomato sauce
  • 20 oz of fresh tomato (about 4 medium-sized tomatoes) blended
  • 4 oz tomato paste
  • 3 medium-sized onions; sliced
  • 3 tablespoons of mango chili medley sauce
  • 2 tablespoons of coco-for-garlic sauce
  • 1 pound smoked turkey


  1. Marinate the cleaned Jumbo prawns with a dash of salt and 1 tablespoon of EssieSpice Mango Chili Medley and allow to sit in the fridge while you work on the Bisque (DO NOT throw away the shells of the prawns).
  2. In a separate pot, heat a tablespoon of coconut oil.
  3. Add 1 tablespoon garlic, about 1/4 cup onion, scallions, shallots, and 1 tablespoon ginger.
  4. Allow onions to cook slowly to brown on medium heat.
  5. Add the shells from the prawns and allow to slightly smoke.
  6. Continuously stir until all the seasonings are on the shells for about 2-3 minutes.
  7. Add the stock and allow it to simmer for an additional 10 minutes.
  8. Sieve out the shells and keep the liquid.
Preparation of Mackerel
  1. Clean the mackerel thoroughly and lightly salt and pepper.
  2. Gently marinate with a tablespoon of EssieSpice Coco-For-Garlic sauce.
  3. Place on a tray to be put in the oven for 15 minutes on each side at 350 degrees F.
Preparation of Bisque
  1. Heat coconut oil in a large, deep cooking pot at medium heat.
  2. Place chicken gently in the pot.
  3. Add 2 tablespoons garlic, the rest of the onion, remaining ginger.
  4. Allow onions to cook slowly to brown on medium to low heat.
  5. While onions caramelize, blend fresh tomatoes with the Habanero/Scotch bonnet pepper.
  6. Cook this and allow the mixture to coat chicken entirely while stirring continuously.
  7. Add Essiespice Coco-For-Garlic sauce.
  8. Stir continuously for another minute allowing even distribution of sauce.
  9. Add salt and reduce heat to a low simmer.
  10. Add tomato paste and bring the heat back up slightly below medium heat so the sauce can simmer and thicken. This will help bring out the sugars in the tomatoes and onions to flavor your sauce.
  11. Add the Mango Chili Medley sauce and water.
  12. Allow the mixture to steam for 10 minutes.
  13. Add the tomato sauce & the peanut butter at this point to the sauce and allow to cook again on low to medium heat. The sauce needs to continue cooking for 20-25 minutes.
  14. Check every 8-10 minutes and stir to allow the sauce to cook evenly.
  15. You can now add the smoked mackerel and smoked turkey and stir it all together.
  16. Add the remainder of the salt, stir and allow for all ingredients to simmer and cook for 10-15 minutes.
  17. Serve the stew with West African Yams, rice, fufu, or eba.