Cafe Abuja Is Bringing Traditional Nigerian Food to Houston — Cooking in America


– I’m here in a Nigerian store and it’s like a whole section of palm oil. That’s that fufu right here. Fufu is a staple food that’s
accompanied with Nigerian food, and it’s kind of like poi in Hawaiian, so I’m excited to see that. Oh, Milo. Ah, making me feel like home already. Do you guys drink Milo? That’s like straight up
Filipino breakfast right there. So there’s only two types
of domesticated rice in this world: Asian style being one, and then West African being the other. Oh my god, I love cow skin. There’s a huge population of
Nigerians here in Houston. When they come into Cafe
Abuja they have that moment of just, feeling of home. (intense drum music) – We stepped away from
just a brand, African. – Africa is huge, right? It’s a continent.
– Yeah, Africa’s a continent, – So we just wanted
people to know that, yes, this is an African restaurant,
but it’s a Nigerian cuisine. And we didn’t want to take away from the traditional ingredients,
so, you know, be ready. His background was Nigerian, I’m American, I’m from, you know, St. Louis.
– Alright. We opened it from a customer perspective. What are all the other
restaurants missing? Really, Cafe Abuja’s not
just here for Nigerians, we’re here for the whole community. – We’ve had different cultures
come in to try the food, and they’re eating it the traditional way, with their hands. – [Sheldon] So, this is the egusi.
– The egusi. – [Rasak] We start by
blending the peppers. Now this is palm oil, this one
one comes from West Africa. And then this is like
shrimp, it’s called crayfish, it’s used in many, all
West African dishes. – [Sheldon] Dried fish. – In Nigeria, when they cut
up an animal, they cube it. We use the cow foot of the
tripe, the lining of the stomach, the shakis, nothing goes to waste. – That’s my jam right here. In Filipino, we call this bendongo. – [Tiffaney] Egusi is a melon
seed that’s in a powder form. – So the soup is gonna thicken when this is added in. And then this is to eat alongside. – The egusi. – [Rasak] This is used in
Nigeria to make pounded yam. – We have this thing in
Hawaii where we take a taro, steam it off or we boil it, peel it, and then we mash it. – That’s right, that’s how
you make the pounded yam. – Because of all the time and
energy put into making this, it’s maybe during weddings, new year, yes, celebration.
– Oh it’s for celebration. If your son hasn’t been
home for a really long time and your mom’s like, you know what, I’m gonna make you pounded yam. So it’s a really special dish. – Western worlds, they find a way to make this pounded
yam in a powdery form. You wash your hands. – You roll it in your hands,
a lotta times they’ll roll it. – Roll your hands. – Yeah, that’s right. – You just pick it up like this. – That’s how it goes,
really nice, delicious. – Oh man, got that spice. – We are two miles away
from the Energy Corridor. There’s a lot of professionals that work in the oil and gas industry. – Okay. – They have a lot of professionals that are nurses and doctors that are here,
– Exactly. like second-generation Nigerians. – Some of them have never been to Nigeria, but have had Nigerian food growing up because their parents cook it for them. When we opened, this was a
spot that they could come to and feel at home. Whether you’re from Nigeria,
we’re welcoming all cultures. – So in here we have
the peppers, habanero. – [Tiffaney] Tomatoes, we blend it with garlic, onions, chicken bullion. – [Sheldon] Then we add
a rich goat stock to it. – Garnish it with vegetable,
which is spinach and tripe. In our stew, we have goat,
we have cow foot, shaki, and then we also have the tilapia. – So the three major tribes
are represented here. We don’t have one person
doing all the cooking, we have sort of like contractors of different regions of the country. Like if you are Ibo,
you cook Ibo food here. – How’s Ibo food? – No Ibo food, Isi Ewu, goat head stew. – Okay. – One day I’m gonna give
you that, I just loved it. Goat head is made with brains
of the goat and everything. (laughing)
– Oh man. – No, goat head stew because
there’s all that collagen that’s in the cheeks.
– Everything. And the creaminess
– Yes, nothing goes to waste. of the brain.
– Goat head stew, – That’s an Ibo food. If you come from Yoruba,
you cook Yoruba food. We have Hausa food, which
is the northern food too. – Yes. You walk into this place,
whether you were born in America or you came from the boat, you know you’ll be taken care of. – Tell me about growing
up in Nigeria first. – When I was in Nigeria,
nobody bought anything unless it said made in USA. – Who knew, all the way
in Nigeria, American made, (laughing)
– Yes. – It means they see USA
as one golden place, whatever they see from the
movie and everything so, it’s a place that if
you play by the rules, if you work hard, you can
go all the way to the top, and that’s what we’ve experienced here. But when we first started,
we didn’t have much money. You gotta take some risk, you don’t know how it’s gonna turn out. – We depended on the word of mouth. You know, new business,
– Mhmm. start up, I had to leave
my job to come here and I’m glad I made that choice. – It’s a blessing to this community, whether they’re working
overnight shifts as a nurse or studying hard on their exams,
what these restaurants are is a safe hub where people can recognize and have a feeling of home. In Hawaii, we say mahalo. – Thank you. – E se. – [All] E se. – Yeah, that’s in the Yoruba. (laughing)
– Alright. – This is the secret chicken
sauce, it’s called pupu sauce. It’s like a sweet ginger soy sauce, almost.
– Okay.

88 comments on “Cafe Abuja Is Bringing Traditional Nigerian Food to Houston — Cooking in America”

  1. Lachlan Crowder says:

    I am Australian and I am offend by the way he pronounced 'Milo'

  2. bagyongronki says:

    Total cringe with the pronunciation of Milo.

    Should be Ma-y-Lo. Not Mee-Lo.

    Haha!

  3. Byron Vath says:

    Ghana makes the best Jollof rice 😀

  4. Penguin619 says:

    All of these restaurants are so close to me, surprised I didn't run into y'all when you came to Houston to film.

  5. prankster671 says:

    braddah is from the Kingdom of Hawai'i…in the language, "I" is pronounced as "ee"…hence "Mee-low"…but those soft, buttery nuggets of naimasness, bendongo tho…hoa, broke da mouth so onolicous!

  6. Heero Yuy says:

    Mate Milo needs to be represented correctly.
    The way to pronounce it is pretend to have an Australian accent and then say it.

    It will roll of the tongue.

  7. Xavier Xavier says:

    Fufu by a cake mixer? And tf kind of yellow ass jollof was that?

  8. jacpppp says:

    Jollof rice is the best rice I have ever tasted

  9. Zeeshan Muhammad says:

    This presenter, Sheldon, is pretty cool. I have yet to be disappointed with any of the videos he's been in — he's very humble, very quickly gels/vibes with his guests and doesn't interject himself into the guest's narrative or stories but knows when to keep the conversation flow going. He's the next Lucas! Keep him on your channel Eater! 🙂

  10. cuallito says:

    Welcome to Zombo com. The infinite is possible at Zombo com. You can do anything at Zombocom….

  11. SisiYemmieTV says:

    Egusi soup is delicious! He pronounced Milo just the way we pronounce it in Nigeria. I have tons of Nigerian recipes on my channel if you want to learn how to make Nigerian food

  12. Taufiq Othman says:

    Milo, man. I drank it a lot when I was a kid since Nestle advertised it as a energy drink for kids here. When kids drink it, they suddenly become the smartest kid in the class, won the marathon, got the black belt in karate and have the highest score in gymnastic competition in one day.

  13. thejompi says:

    Pounded yam or fufu is the special way of doing it, if you go to a market in Port Harcourt you get served gari which is cassava flour mixed with water and you eat it the same way with egusi, groundnut soup, okro.

  14. dpyxl says:

    Obama's local food

  15. ra71myo says:

    africa is my city

  16. Jason Cox says:

    that section of palm oil makes me so sad.

  17. Heather McC says:

    I love that you're showcasing the culinary diversity of Houston!

  18. laban carter says:

    this is capitalism at it's finest!! I love it!!

  19. Alma VH says:

    Sheldon back at it again!

  20. Raven says:

    0:16 im filipino and we say "Mai-Low"

  21. IceFIsh says:

    I couldn't eat any of this.

  22. Faizol Mai says:

    I'm Nigerian and our food is so nice

  23. acrophobe says:

    Sheldon don't think I didn't see you sneaking in that Spinach Bae.

  24. PunchOut says:

    ast two digit is your Starting Lineup

    1.Jordan
    2.Lonzo
    3.Lavar
    4.Jason Kidd
    5.lebron

    6.YO MAMAl
    7.Harden
    8.Duncan
    9.Mark gasol
    0.Lamelo Ball

  25. Dominik MJ says:

    I am half Nigerian, but I can’t get my head around the “everything but the kitchenvsink” concept. Maybe it is the point, that I also don’t crustaceans or that I find cubed bone meats in stew a topic of my nightmares? Or that I think, that cubed bouillon shouldn’t be on anyones recipe list who ones a restaurant?

    Suya is dope though….

  26. T A says:

    I'm Nigerian. We pronounce Milo as "me-low"

  27. Brian Kim says:

    Sheldon is a great host

  28. Daniel H says:

    Great series!

  29. komikero says:

    Meelo? What the hell is MEELO? Oh, he means MY-LO. That's how we pronounce that here in the Philippines.

  30. BlazeMasterGaming says:

    sees Milo

    beats Energy Gap

  31. James Ren says:

    I love that he's in the kitchen learning and cooking with them before eating!

  32. HD 909 says:

    Everyone on YouTube now and day trying to be like Anthony Bourdain lol, respect the OG that start it haha

  33. kike siller says:

    first she says that Africa is a whole continent, then says she's from America… wtf

  34. Faern Nashar says:

    MILO represent. Nestle basically own chocolate beverage sector in some country.

  35. Phillip Leong says:

    I'm going to start pronouncing "Milo" as "Me-lo".
    Sounds exotic and anyone that hears me saying "Me-lo" will start to question if they have been pronouncing it wrong.

  36. Ali Hussain says:

    How are you going to do a video about Nigerian food without Jallof Rice, Plantain, and assorted Meat? Suya? Nigerian food is spectacular though. Genuinely one of my favourites.

  37. Niklas Martin says:

    coach Palestinian slice rice one trust.

  38. matereymate says:

    would try it, but not going to lie didn't look too appetizing to me

  39. Phrankleen says:

    Interesting video, keep putting Nigerian Food Recipes on the world map 😀👌

  40. ME Vincent says:

    Sheldon killing it

  41. coffee lover says:

    What happens if I don't really feel comforable eating with my hand?

  42. Oly.B says:

    I knew he wasn't Igbo after that comment 😂

  43. Turbo net says:

    Melooo? its Milo!!! it's my favourite drink so pronounce it write or else!

  44. Sammy Gaga says:

    Nigerian foods are always the best, like trust me i''ve been there

  45. John Smith says:

    meelo? sorry bud, as an aussie, its pronounced m-eye-lo…. 🙂

  46. Stephanie Sarah Nieva-Diño says:

    Subscribed and clicked the Notif bell just 'coz of Sheldon Simeon!!! 😍 I love the way he handled the whole segment…he's a natural host who shows great passion for food, culture, & history behind the people & the flavors they offer. 😊👍🏼 Now, I'm off to watch all of Sheldon's vids. 😂 More power to you Sheldon!!! Love heaps from Sydney!!!! 😘❤️

  47. Lotta Etrone says:

    meeeelo??? hahahahahaha

  48. ruben Goodliff says:

    Wow😁😀👌👍👏👏👏
    I think this video is so great.

  49. skalawitz says:

    I love this channel.. Everybody seems very happy. From America to Africa and India all the way to the Pacific islands. Sharing cultures (food), it's amazing.. and I love Nigeria.. (I'm Filipino by the way.)

  50. Chocolate Funk says:

    Absolute South East Asian and Aussie dhumbarses (i'm pronouncing this the way I WANT TO) whining about the pronunciation of a drink when it had absolutely nothing to do with the food in the video. I am from Singapore and we largely pronounce it as MYLO, but some say Meelo and that is absolutely fine. Goddamn, get triggered over something important will ya?

  51. Elle C says:

    i tried ethiopian food a few days ago i cant wait to try nigerian food next mmm.

  52. CupCake says:

    Fufu is actually Ghanaian. Nigerians call their version pounded yam.

  53. Janet lagah-bona says:

    i love this and i need more of this

  54. Vivi Iku says:

    I dig the #saltbae move with spinach.

  55. chuchuchuchia says:

    Always wanted to get more familiar with various African cuisines

  56. Tiger In the Desert says:

    Awesome host! Awesome show!

  57. Anshu Kumar says:

    Nice

  58. Kristovsky says:

    Ok I am going to name my dog fufu lol

  59. son of Djinn says:

    MEELO?! ITS PRONOUNCED MY-LO, its like he's not even Australian

  60. Francesca Agyeman says:

    In Ghana, it sounds similar to Egusi in Nigeria and it’s called Agushi in Ghana 🇬🇭 from the Ga tribe.

  61. Carrtier Mannier says:

    Milo grew on me as a kid. But when I moved to America…..nesquick made it seem nasty to me. Don’t hate. Still true Nigerian at heart

  62. Jay Cobbina says:

    I love Moi Moi.

  63. 『こんいちわ』Phantom Flames says:

    Its (My-loh)
    Not (Mee-Loh)

  64. RM Javines says:

    Mee-lo?? Lols Kahit sa hawaii ka pa lumaki napagtripan ka ng mga kamaganak mong Pilipino..Intindihin mo muna to tapos ayusin mo ha..Lab you lols

  65. yes says:

    Fufu means ewew in russian фуу

  66. gymtip1 says:

    yam good food

  67. Mystkal Diamond says:

    Your not american no one is you just live there. Your black mum dad comes from afrika and your from the part nigeria. Stop playing your self. Plus your want real food go eat turkish kurdish syrian lebanese pakistan indian iranian afghani food and youll know what food is.

  68. Okwu ID says:

    Egusi soup is life!! Ndi Nigeria !!!!!!

  69. BRANDON DAVIS says:

    I’m eating Jollof Rice as I type

  70. Amalia Torres Hernanadez says:

    Amo es comida 😋 es deliciosa 👉🏽❤️

  71. Amalia Torres Hernanadez says:

    Quiero un novio de allá 😉

  72. Mary Charles says:

    Sheldon, you have love for food & so do I. Really enjoy watching your interest in different cuisine. Thanks much & be blessed.

  73. Mektek19 says:

    Did this trick just say pounded yam is a special dish lmao. That's every day. Also why is that egusi so damn thick sheesh

  74. Newmaidumosa says:

    The nicest food in the world but still don't know how to present it well…

  75. Opeyemi Famakin Chef says:

    i like this video.. pure and unadulterated Nigerian food

  76. iyke ewnaho says:

    Be warned people, egusi is to be eaten with care, you will get fat. It's so delicious you're gonna get fat.

  77. Vergel Velasquez says:

    Sheldo its not meelo its my-lo

  78. Darryl Bracero says:

    you know we pronounce milo as "maylo" here in ph XD

  79. John Pinoy says:

    Haha milo.. its actual the way you say iS it (mylo.) MILO

  80. B Ready says:

    If you are Togolese, please do something. Where is your savoir_ faire ? You can do much better when it comes to seasoning, cooking . But this people are bolder.

  81. Fainah Hernandez says:

    The egusi soup! The guy I once dated made me try this. Now I miss the food more than him 😂

  82. Yusri Ismail says:

    Is this restaurant halal?

  83. Fraley says:

    As an Aussie I miss milo very dearly

  84. paul wall says:

    I love this series of food videos!

  85. paul wall says:

    When I lived in Tacoma, Washington, I worked at a hospital there. There were a many hospital staff members from Nigeria, and I loved it when we had staff potlucks.

    The food bounty was fantastic!!! Nigerian, Kenyan, Filipino, Ukranian, Vietnamese…you name it.

    Wonderful times…

  86. Todd Tamayo says:

    Each time he says Hawaii take a shot 💀

  87. WindiGreens says:

    I'm Nigerian in a small town in America and I miss Nigerian food. I'll be moving to a big city soon hopefully and be homing on Nigerian restaurants immediately.

  88. G.A. Impression Concepts says:

    How can i work with you?

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