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3 mistakes to avoid when cooking fried rice



When it comes to top-tier rice, fried rice is challenging the top position with jollof. Fried rice has its origin from China and it has since grown from just rice and vegetables to a meal with different combinations cooked in many countries of the world.

To avoid spoiling your elite dish, here are three mistakes to avoid when cooking fried rice:

1) Cooking your rice till it’s too soft

The first mistake to avoid when cooking fried rice is overcooking. The first step in most recipes for fried rice is boiling your rice. It is important to note that the process of frying your vegetables and the rice also introduces more heat to your rice and makes it even softer.

With this in mind, there is no need adding so much water while boiling the rice as doing so will just leave you with a fried rice that looks mushy and no one likes that. If you are not sure of the right amount of water to use in boiling, you can always add a little at first and keep monitoring and adding more water where necessary.

2) Overcrowding your frying pan/wok
Another mistake to avoid while cooking your fried rice is overloading your frying pan, wok or whatever pot you use in cooking. This is wrong because fried rice is one meal that has to do with lots of stirring and you will need enough space to do that continuously or at least, as much as is needed.

Overcrowding your pan prevents this. A good way to avoid this if you do not have a big enough frying pan or wok, is to cook in batches. This helps you to stir properly and ensures all the vegetables are cooked properly.

3) Not storing properly
The issue most people have with the Nigerian fried rice is how it goes bad easily. This is actually because of the high content of oil which makes it the perfect medium for growth of microorganisms that do not only spoil your food, but can cause food poisoning.

This is why it is important to store properly immediately after cooking. One thing you can do is refrigerating the fried rice the remaining after dishing out what you can consume for that day. Another way is to reheat immediately after frying, especially if you fried in batches.

You could also fry only the batch you need for that day and refrigerate your vegetables and remaining boiled rice for later.


10 most expensive staple foods to buy in Nigeria




Nigeria’s Food inflation climbed to 40.53% in April 2024, according to the Consumer Price Index report of the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).

This represented a 15.92% increase from the 24.61% food inflation rate recorded in April 2023.

However, Nigeria’s month-on-month food inflation declined in April for the second consecutive time following five months of consistent increase dating back to October 2023.

Monthly food inflation in April stood at 2.50%, a decline from the 3.62% recorded in March 2024 when year-on-year food inflation reached 40.01%. 

Nigeria, with its diverse cuisine and rich culinary heritage, has seen significant fluctuations in the prices of staple foods over the past year.

Based on the recent data from the NBS, here are the 10 most expensive staple foods in Nigeria as of April 2024: 

10. Rice Agric Sold Loose 

Rice agric sold loose has seen a significant rise in prices with a 135.62% increase YoY, making it one of the top ten most expensive staple foods in Nigeria. The average price of 1kg of rice was N631.50 in April 2023, which increased to N1,487.91 in April 2024. From March 2024 to April 2024, the average price rose from N1,378.84 to N1,487.91, reflecting a 7.91% MoM increase. 

The highest prices were recorded in Niger state at N1,984.18, while Benue state had the lowest at N1,078.73. This rise is indicative of broader trends affecting rice production and distribution in Nigeria. 

 9. Chicken Feet 

Chicken feet, a popular delicacy in Nigeria, has experienced a substantial YoY increase of 138.58%. The price was N1,115.29 in April 2023, which surged to N2,660.90 in April 2024. This represents a 9.04% increase from March 2024, when the price was N2,440.35. 

The highest price was found in Abuja at N5,507.95, significantly higher than the lowest price of N1,005.10 in Bauchi state. This price surge reflects the rising demand and possible supply constraints affecting chicken feet. 

8. Plantain (Ripe) 

Ripe plantains, essential in many Nigerian dishes, have seen a 144.68% YoY price hike. The price was N412.39 in April 2023, increasing to N1,009.05 in April 2024. From March 2024 to April 2024, the price rose from N947.35 to N1,009.05, representing a 6.51% MoM increase. 

The highest prices were observed in Cross River at N1,380.87, whereas Yobe state had the lowest prices at N560.81. The price increase underscores the high demand for plantains and the challenges in maintaining stable supply chains. 

7. Irish Potato 

The price of Irish potatoes has surged by 149.18% YoY. The price was N567.29 in April 2023, rising to N1,413.57 in April 2024. From March 2024 to April 2024, the price increased from N1,254.45 to N1,413.57, reflecting a 12.68% increase from the previous month. 

Ondo state recorded the highest price at N2,000, while Borno had the lowest at N653.73. This significant rise is influenced by seasonal factors, transportation costs, and possibly localized production challenges. 

6. Rice Medium Grained 

Medium-grained rice prices have risen by 151.95% YoY. The price was N609.57 in April 2023, increasing to N1,535.83 in April 2024. From March 2024 to April 2024, the price rose from N1,438.07 to N1,535.83, marking a 6.8% increase from March 2024. 

The highest prices were recorded in Ogun state at N1,899.91, while Kano state had the lowest at N1,164.35. The steady increase in prices reflects broader trends in the rice market, including production costs and demand fluctuations. 

5. Yam Tuber 

Yam, a staple in many Nigerian households, has experienced a 154.19% YoY increase. The price was N444.69 in April 2023, rising to N1,130.37 in April 2024. From March 2024 to April 2024, the price rose from N1,068.78 to N1,130.37, representing a 5.76% MoM rise. 

Cross River state had the highest price at 1,797.15, while Bauchi state had the lowest at N638.64. The price increase highlights the essential nature of yams in Nigerian cuisine and the pressures on supply chains. 

4. Rice Local Sold Loose 

Local rice prices have climbed by 155.93% YoY. The price was N546.76 in April 2023, increasing to N1,399.34 in April 2024. From March 2024 to April 2024, the price rose from N1,340.74 to N1,399.34, a 4.37% increase from the previous month. 

Niger state recorded the highest prices at N1,785.47, while Benue had the lowest at N993.72. The increase in local rice prices underscores the challenges in local production and distribution, impacting affordability. 

3. Broken Rice (Ofada) 

Ofada rice, known for its unique taste, has seen a 158% YoY price increase. The price was N601.61 in April 2023, surging to N1,552.18 in April 2024. From March 2024 to April 2024, the price rose slightly from N1,525.75 to N1,552.18, a modest 1.73% increase. 

Ogun state saw the highest prices at N2,941.81, while Zamfara had the lowest at N987.28. This substantial price rise reflects the growing popularity and limited availability of Ofada rice. 

2. Plantain (Unripe) 

Unripe plantain prices have soared by 168.29% YoY. The price was N372.89 in April 2023, increasing to N1,000.41 in April 2024. From March 2024 to April 2024, the price rose from N933.16 to N1,000.41, a 7.21% increase from the previous month. 

The highest prices were recorded in Ondo state at N1,729.57, while Yobe had the lowest at N470. The significant increase highlights the versatile use of plantains in Nigerian cuisine and the supply challenges faced. 

1. Sweet Potato 

Sweet potato tops the list with an astounding 182.04% YoY increase. The price was N286.26 in April 2023, surging to N807.35 in April 2024. From March 2024 to April 2024, the price rose from N689.47 to N807.35, reflecting a 17.1% MoM increase. 

Delta state recorded the highest price at N1,381.37, while Kaduna had the lowest at N387.68. The drastic price rise of sweet potatoes indicates a significant demand-supply imbalance and highlights the need for targeted interventions to stabilize prices.

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5 amazing facts about pork that makes it the best meat




Pork is a controversial choice among meats for many reasons, often hailed for its flavor, versatility, and nutritional benefits.

Here are five amazing facts that make pork a top choice for many consumers:

Pork is highly prized for its rich, savory flavor, which is enhanced by its fat content.

Unlike other meats, much of the fat in pork is interspersed within the muscle, a characteristic known as marbling.

This marbling not only enhances the flavor but also contributes to a tender, juicy texture when cooked, making dishes like pulled pork or pork belly particularly succulent and tasty.

One of the most significant advantages of pork is its versatility in cooking. It can be smoked, grilled, roasted, sautéed, or braised.

Pork adapts well to a variety of cooking methods and can be used in countless recipes across global cuisines, from American barbecues with pork ribs to Spanish tapas featuring chorizo or Italian dishes with pancetta.

Pork is an excellent source of high-quality protein, which is essential for muscle maintenance and growth.

It is also rich in several important vitamins and minerals, including B vitamins (particularly B1, B6, and B12), which are crucial for a range of physiological functions including energy metabolism and neurological health.

Pork also provides important minerals like phosphorus, selenium, and zinc.

Pork production is generally more cost-effective and resource-efficient compared to beef.

Pigs have a higher feed conversion efficiency rate than cattle, meaning they convert a greater proportion of their feed into body weight.

This makes pork a more sustainable option in terms of resource use and environmental impact, considering the global need to optimize food production systems.

Pork is one of the richest natural sources of creatine, a compound important for energy storage in muscle cells. This makes it particularly beneficial for athletes and bodybuilders looking to improve performance and muscle growth.

Consuming pork can help increase the levels of creatine in the body, potentially enhancing physical performance and aiding muscle recovery during and after exercise.

These attributes make pork a favored choice among many meat-eaters, blending culinary pleasure with substantial nutritional benefits, and making it an appealing option for a balanced diet.

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3 foods you must avoid to burn belly fat




Excess fat around the midsection not only affects your appearance but also poses risks to your health.

While regular exercise and a balanced diet are essential for achieving this goal, certain foods can hinder your progress.

This article explores three foods – both solid and liquid – that you should avoid if you’re aiming to burn belly fat.

Processed foods are often high in unhealthy fats, sugars, and artificial additives, making them a major contributor to belly fat accumulation. These include packaged snacks, sugary cereals, fast food, and ready-to-eat meals. These foods are typically low in essential nutrients and fibre, which can lead to overeating and weight gain.

Additionally, the high sodium content in processed foods can cause water retention and bloating, further exacerbating the appearance of belly fat.

Alternatively, opt for whole, unprocessed foods like fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and whole grains. These foods are rich in nutrients, fibre, and antioxidants, which can support healthy weight loss and reduce belly fat over time.

Sugary beverages such as soda, fruit juices, energy drinks, and sweetened coffee drinks are loaded with empty calories and contribute to belly fat gain. These drinks are high in fructose, a type of sugar that is metabolised by the liver and stored as fat if consumed in excess. Additionally, sugary beverages provide little to no nutritional value and can cause spikes in blood sugar levels, leading to increased hunger and cravings for unhealthy foods.

Alternative: Stay hydrated with water, herbal teas, or infused water with fresh fruits and herbs. These alternatives are calorie-free and can help curb cravings while promoting hydration and overall health.

Refined carbohydrates like white bread, white rice, pasta, and pastries are quickly broken down into sugar by the body, leading to spikes in blood sugar levels and insulin resistance. This can promote fat storage, especially around the abdominal area. Additionally, refined carbohydrates lack fibre and essential nutrients, leaving you feeling hungry and unsatisfied shortly after eating.

Alternatively, choose whole grains like brown rice, quinoa, oats, and whole wheat bread, which are higher in fibre and nutrients and promote feelings of fullness and satiety. These complex carbohydrates are digested more slowly, helping to stabilise blood sugar levels and reduce belly fat accumulation.

Achieving a trimmer waistline and burning belly fat requires a holistic approach that includes regular exercise and a balanced diet.

By avoiding processed foods, sugary beverages, and refined carbohydrates, you can support your weight loss goals and improve your overall health.

Instead, focus on consuming whole, nutrient-dense foods that nourish your body and promote fat loss. Remember, small dietary changes can lead to significant results over time, so choose your foods wisely and prioritise your health and well-being.

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Bodex F. Hungbo, SPMIIM is a multiple award-winning Nigerian Digital Media Practitioner, Digital Strategist, PR consultant, Brand and Event Expert, Tv Presenter, Tier-A Blogger/Influencer, and a top cobbler in Nigeria.

She has widespread experiences across different professions and skills, which includes experiences in; Marketing, Media, Broadcasting, Brand and Event Management, Administration and Management with prior stints at MTN, NAPIMS-NNPC, GLOBAL FLEET OIL AND GAS, LTV, Silverbird and a host of others

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