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Alternative namesAgashe (Sudan) Tsire (Northern Nigeria)
Region or stateNigeria
Main ingredientsMeat, chicken, shrimp

Suya or tsire is a spicy meat skewer which is a popular food item in West Africa.[1] It is also eaten in Sudan, referred to as "Agashe".[2] Suya is generally made with skewered beef, ram, or chicken. Innards such as kidney, liver and tripe are also used.[3] The thinly sliced meat is marinated in various spices which include peanut cake, salt, vegetable oil and other flavorings, and then barbecued. Suya is served with extra helpings of dried pepper mixed with spices and sliced onions. Halal meat preparation methods are normally used, especially in the northern parts of Nigeria,[3] where the suspicion of nonconformity to Muslim dietary prohibitions in Suya preparation has been known to cause riots.[4] A dried version of Suya is called Kilishi.[3] It can be eaten with Garri or Ogi.

Suya seller in Abuja.
Chicken suya with jollof rice and plantains

There is no standard recipe for the production of the complex mixture of spices and additives which make up the Suya marinade (called Yaji) and the spice mix served with it. Ingredients may vary according to personal and regional preferences.[3]

Although Suya originated in the Northern parts of Nigeria, it has permeated the Nigerian society, being affordable for all and available everywhere. It has been called a unifying factor in Nigeria.[5] Suya has become a Nigerian national dish with different regions claiming the superiority of their recipe and methods of preparation, but similar grilled meat recipes are common in many West African countries.[3]

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  1. ^ EKE, IRABOR ,OKOYE; et al. "THE MICROBIAL STATUS OF COMMERCIAL 'SUYA' MEAT PRODUCTS IN EKPOMA, EDO, NIGERIA" (PDF). International Journal of Community Research. Retrieved 5 April 2014.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  2. ^ El-Sheikh, Amr (3 December 2018). "Agashe: Sudan's Homage to its African Roots". 500 Words Magazine. Retrieved 22 Mar 2020.
  3. ^ a b c d e Agence France-Presse (22 May 2012). "Nigerian roadside barbecue shacks thrive in the midst of Islamist insurgency". The Raw Story. Retrieved 5 April 2014.
  4. ^ Jacobs, Alan (18 January 2008). "Suya Wars". First Things. Archived from the original on 4 April 2014. Retrieved 5 April 2014.
  5. ^ GAMBRELL, Jon (24 November 2012). "Suya, the thin-sliced spiced meat, unites Nigeria". Ann Arbor News. Retrieved 2 April 2014.

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