Chilli Garlic Mogo
RECIPE: CHILLI GARLIC MOGO
Chilli Garlic Mogo is a lip smacking, spicy, starter dish made using cassava or yucca. Made in the style of the famous Indo-Chinese Chilli Paneer, it goes really well with chilled beer. It is a dish that you will not miss on most of the Indian Restaurant Menus. You will not find this dish in India and till recent was not on the menu in any of the Kenyan Restaurants. However, the UK trend is catching on fast and nowadays one can easily order Chilli Garlic Mogo in fast food Indian restaurants in Kenya.
Should Chilli Garlic Mogo Be The National Veggie Dish Of UK?
Mogo is commonly the misspelt mhogo coined by the East African Asians. Mhogo is simply cassava, yucca or tapioca. Well, let us get one thing cleared, this root does not grow in UK. However, the best of cassava is found in the grocery stores in UK, either from the Caribbean Islands or East Africa. You will find the fresh ones or frozen ones.
Famous In UK
So how did this dish then become very popular in UK? Don’t know for sure but would love to find out. The story goes that an ex Kenyan Asian born in India emigrated to UK and started a restaurant. One of the starter dishes he prepared was a copy of the famous Chilli Paneer from India. Chilli Paneer is actually an Indo Chinese dish where Indian spices mix with cornstarch and soy sauce, resulting in a very tasty balance of flavours dish usually enjoyed with chilled beer.
As back then paneer was a rarity in UK or too expensive, the next best option of cassava or mhogo, mogo. The first time ever I tasted Chilli Garlic Mogo is when my UK based family ordered take away from the famous ‘The Regency Club’. My mum loved this dish and would always order it whenever we went to any of the Indian restaurants for a meal.
Having tasted it in UK during my visits, it was time to recreate the dish in my kitchen in Mombasa. As I knew it was based on the chilli paneer recipe, making this dish was not difficult. After a few tries got the perfect balance of flavours that suited my family. For one, I don’t add bell pepper or capsicum as hubby is allergic to them.
My Veggie Lady Esther bought loads of Mhogo and insisted that I buy some. She grows them on her farm. The cassava was fresh and I couldn’t refuse buying it from her. So, it was time to make the revised version of Chilli Garlic Mhogo, keeping my fingers crossed that it comes out well and I can take some photos of the dish.
Check Out Some More Garlic Based Recipes On My Blog
Can I Air Fry Or Bake The Boiled Mogo?
Instead of deep frying the boiled mogo pieces you can air fry or bake them. I prefer baking them. Brush the mogo pieces lightly with some oil. Preheat the oven the to 200C. Bake the mogo for 20-30 minutes until they appear a little crispy. Remember you don’t want to over bake them as they will become dry and hard.
To use the air fryer, use the same setting you would for potato wedges. Every air fryer has different settings.
Ingredients Required For Chilli Garlic Mogo:
- Cassava – mogo, mhogo, tapioca, yucca, peeled, cut into chunks and boiled. I like to boil in salted water in a deep pan. That way I can watch that the cassava does not over cook. Over cooked or boiled cassava does not retain its shape. You want mogo that is not too soft or too hard when cooked. Once boiled you need to deep fry the mogo pieces lightly. Don’t allow it to become brown otherwise the overall texture of the mogo will become hard.
- Onion – red, yellow or white. Peeled and chopped finely.
- Green Capsicum – cut into chunks. I have not used any as hubby is allergic to them.
- Garlic – for this dish you need an extra amount of garlic. I prefer to mince the peeled garlic.
- Green Chillis – either chopped finely or minced.
- Ginger – peeled and minced or cut into thin julienne.
- Spring Onion – chop both the white and green parts.
- Cumin Seeds – jeera, jiru.
- Oil – enough for deep frying and stir frying.
- Tomato Puree – fresh thick tomato puree. Can use canned passata or make at home. I boil the tomatoes in just enough water till they become soft. Then I puree them into a thick paste.
- Soy Sauce – best to use dark soy sauce.
- Chilli sauce – use any homemade chilli sauce, sriracha or as I do Peptang Chilli Sauce.
- Tomato Ketchup – use a good quality one like Heinz. I don’t like to use the local tomato ketchup as they tend to have too much of starch in them.
- Red Chilli Powder – I like to use Kashmiri Red Chilli Powder as it lends a lovely red colour to the dish.
- Salt – add according to your taste. Remember, you have boiled the cassava in salted water.
- Brown Sugar – need a bit for the balanced sour and sweet taste. However can omit it if you want to.
- Pepper Powder
- Lemon Juice – add according to your taste. Can serve lemon wedges on the side.
- Fresh Coriander – chopped for garnishing
CHILLI GARLIC MOGO
- 500 g cassava mogo
- 1½ tsp salt
- 1 cup onion diced
- 1 small green capsicum cut into chunks
- 2 tbsp garlic minced
- 1 tsp ginger minced
- ½ cup fresh tomato puree thick
- ½ cup spring onion chopped
- 3 tbsp chilli sauce of your choice
- 2 tbsp soy sauce
- 4 tbsp tomato ketchup
- 1 -2 tsp red chilli powder
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- ½-1 tsp brown sugar
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- ½ tsp salt
- 3 tbsp oil
- 6 to 8 green chillis sliced or minced
- ½ tsp pepper powder
- oil for frying
- 3-4 tbsp fresh coriander chopped
PEEL AND BOIL THE MOGO:
- Peel, wash and cut the mogo into bite size pieces.
- Boil enough water in a saucepan.
- Add 1½ tsp salt to the water and the mogo pieces.
- Boil the mogo till just done. Make sure it doesn't get overcooked.
- Drain out the water and let the mogo cool down for a while.
- Pat them dry with a kitchen towel if deep frying.
FRY THE MOGO
- Heat oil in a wok or kadai for frying over medium heat.
- Fry the mogo in batches till it is light pink in colour. Do not over fry otherwise it will become dry.
- Alternately, bake them in the oven at 200°C for 20 minutes. Brush the pieces lightly with oil before baking.
MAKE THE SAUCE:
- Mix tomato puree, ketchup, soy sauce, chilli sauce, chilli powder, sugar,lemon juice and salt in a bowl.
PREPARE CHILLI GARLIC MOGO:
- Heat the oil in a wide pan.
- Add cumin seeds and then the onion.
- Stir fry the onion till it becomes soft and translucent.
- Also add chopped capsicum if using any along with the onion.
- Add garlic, ginger and the green chillis. Stir fry for 1 minute.
- Add the chopped spring onion. Give it a quick stir.
- Add the sauce mixture and mix well.
- Add the mogo pieces and pepper powder. Mix well.
- Garnish with fresh chopped coriander or spring onion and serve immediately.
- If you want to add capsicum or bell pepper, cut them into chunk sizes and stir fry with the onion.
- For a more spicy mogo add more chillis. Avoid adding chilli rings if serving it to kids.
- For more gravy or sauce double the amount of sauces.
- Use good quality mhogo and not the stringy type.
- Choose mogo where the flesh is white and blemish free.
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