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Miyan Zogale, A Northern Nigerian Cuisine

Miyan Zogale is a Nigerian soup that hails from Northern Nigeria. Northern Nigeria is predominantly occupied by the Hausa-Fulani, the largest ethnic group in the country.  The soup, miyan zogale, derives its name from two Hausa words, ‘miyan’ which means ‘soup’ and ‘zogale’ which means moringa leaves. One can therefore infer from this interpretation that miyan zogale is moringa leaf soup.

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Miyan zogale is green in colour. Three important ingredients used in making this soup are groundnut, moringa leaves, and locust bean. Miyan zogale is a groundnut based soup; this means that groundnut which is locally known as gyada is the thickener for this soup.

The groundnuts can be ground without peeling. Miyan zogale is traditionally prepared without palm oil or vegetable oil. The only oil in this soup is the oil from the ground groundnut that is added to it.

Moringa leaves serves as the vegetable for this soup. It is alleged that the strength of this vegetable depends on its source. Zogale that are harvested from matured trees are said to be hard to cook; they may take at least one hour of cooking on medium heat to get soft. On the other hand, zogale that are harvested from immature trees are said to take a shorter time to cook.

Now, most people who use this vegetable to cook may not know its source; therefore, it is advisable to parboil it first before use. This means that the moringa leaves determine the length of time to be spent making this soup.

Zogale is medicinal; it is said to be anti-diabetic and anti-hypertensive. It is also said to lower blood cholesterol level. Zogale can be purchased from any local market in your area.

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Locust bean (dawa dawa) serves as the local sweetener for this soup and most Hausa foods. Other ingredients used in making this soup are beef, stock fish, ground crayfish, ground tomatoes and pepper, seasoning cubes, salt. This delicious soup is best enjoyed with tuwo shinkafa. But in its absence, any Nigerian swallow can accompany this soup.


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Obiamaka Angela Udevi

Udevi, Obiamaka Angela holds a Master of Arts degree in History & International Studies. She's a freelance writer with a passion for food and healthy living. She can be contacted through her email address,

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