My Amala Experience

Mr P was the first person to take me on something I'll like to call "amala adventure". Prior to this event, I had enjoyed eating amala but not the Ibadan way. I lived and worked in Ibadan at the time. One morning, we had to journey to Lagos and it was impromptu. I was trying to fix myself some fried eggs and bread when Mr P noticed me. He asked what I was doing and I told him I needed to take something to eat along. He smiled, then said, "you no even need this one, but just carry am". I did "carried" it and off we went.

In no time, we were in challenge. Next thing we were in a busy, almost rowdy local food canteen. I later learned that was the popular Iya Ila's canteen. That moment marked my first amala experience in Ibadan. Mr P quickly picked out bowls and handed me one. That was all I needed for the ride. As a smart foodie, I had studied the flow of events, I already knew the point to go first and the last stop. I hurriedly positioned myself in front of the woman serving steaming hot, smooth, slightly stretchy, soft, brown goodness. With finesse, she dropped two scoops in my bowl, leaving the bowl almost falling off my hand. Mr P made the order as we moved from point to point.

In less than a minute, we had been fixed and were ready to dig in. By this time, all seats were occupied. Like a few other people at the canteen, lack of seats didn't stop us. We held our bowls of goodness in one hand, ate with the other. It was fast, it was steaming hot with each morsel almost falling of our hands; it was delicious. All soups were in their right consistencies. Ewedu was the badass type, gbegiri was on point and so was the stew. It was good, really good. By the time we got back into the car, we were sweating like labourers who had been toiling on a construction site. Friends, I didn't know how it happened but when I opened my eyes, we were already on third mainland bridge.

In my final year at the University of Ibadan, two of my friends, Doyin and Buki took me to mama Ola's canteen (not sure I remember that name correctly). The canteen was at Oju-irin, Bodija. I liked how relatively organised and not-too-rowdy the canteen was. I was there a couple of times and each time, it was worth it.

Wale was the one who led Buki and I to "Amala skye" beside skye bank at Bodija. It was on a hot afternoon after we had shopped for our forthcoming cooking competition held by our department. You see, I have always been interested in food matters. I will tell you about the puff-puff and zobo I made for our cooking competition that got everyone talking, later. Amala skye was good too. Indeed, when God gave the people of Oyo state amala, he also endowed them with the expertise to make it.

When I newly met Collins, he asked me to sit with him over a bowl of Amala. It was "amala bookshop", University of Ibadan. I declined because I was still shy around him, his friends were also there and there was no way I would enjoy my amala around them. Well, I later went back to check out "amala bookshop" on my own and I wasn't disappointed.

I learnt to make my own amala, Ibadan style long ago; the good work must continue. Let me know if you will like me to share the recipe plus all the tips and tricks. Since leaving Ibadan, I have eaten amala from two places that come close to that of Ibadan. One was somewhere at  obalende Lagos. The other, one restaurant at Ipaja. I am yet to experience the Ibadan type of feel good amala.

Have you eaten from any of these amala outlets in Ibadan? Which is your favourite? Share your thought and experience with me.

My Amala Experience My Amala Experience Reviewed by Remi on 05:53 Rating: 5


  1. I am not so much of a foodie like you.. lol, but i have eaten amala skye before and it sure tastes and feel good. I have heard about that mama ola too, never been there though.

    And, i can't believe there is an amala joint in Ui and i don't know about it! really?!

    BTW, so what happened to your bread and egg you took for the trip?

  2. Oh, there is an amala joint in UI, it was once situated under the tree directly facing the bookshop. They later moved to somewhere behind CBN lecture theatre, faculty of science.
    I had the bread and egg for dinner! lol!


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