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Longthroat Memoirs: Soups, Sex and Nigerian Taste Buds

3.97  ·  Rating details ·  108 ratings  ·  22 reviews
One of the most enduring myths on the Nigerian Femme Fatale - mammy-water, 'winch' or husband-snatcher - has to do with the cooking of fish stew ... A woman can do what she likes with a man When She knows how to satisfy his appetite for food. "Long throat Memoirs presents a sumptuous menu of essays about Nigerian food, lovingly presented by the nation's top epicurean write ...more
Paperback, 357 pages
Published October 31st 2016 by Cassava Republic Press
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Average rating 3.97  · 
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Jan 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Yemisi Aribisala definitely knows her stuff, the journeys she has taken in this country for food are fascinating. With the result being an essay collection that is witty, informative, heartbreaking and delicious. At least, I assume it is, I am yet to try out any of her recipes (because I’m lazy) but I have my eyes on her Peppered puff puff recipe.

K.J. Charles
Jan 23, 2018 marked it as pass
Shelves: dnf, african
Some really wonderful bits of writing, and some fantastic essays. Very culturally specific and I'm not getting a lot of it because I don't know Nigerian food. I suspect it would be amazing if you do, but lyrical food descriptions generally require reader knowledge to work. My loss. If I ever get to go to Nigeria I'm bringing this. ...more
Shawn Mooney (Shawn The Book Maniac)
Bailed 12% of the way in. Fun and energetic but too detailed and loooong for me, especially not knowing anything about Nigerian food or most of the vegetables, spices, or other ingredients she rhapsodizes about. Might go back to it later...
Nov 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: african-classics
Aribisala writes about Nigerian ingredients and soups in the way one would a lover, a person whose tricks, tastes, and curves are as known and dear as one’s own body. She showcases the dynamic, larger-than-life personality of Nigerian food and seats it on its own throne among food royalty.

In each essay, every recipe or pot of soup she talks about, she describes every detail so exquisitely that as you read, you can taste the crunchy, bursting seeds of green, fresh, perfectly made okro, and the ta
Feb 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
All i have to say is: I'm glad this book was published. And i need more books like this that praise Nigerian cuisine. It was beautiful. ...more
Jan 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: novels
[edit because I didn't know what to write when I finished this]:

Longthroat memoirs is a beautiful & special book whose main concern is Nigerian food, its gastronomic features, and its importance, pertaining to Nigerians and the world at large. It's a book I'm probably going to read multiple times throughout my life -for reference and for pleasure.

Nigerian food (specifically, soups. Please stop talking about Jollof rice) really is the most amazing thing a person can create in a pot, and
Feb 23, 2019 rated it it was ok
The language in this book is beautiful at times but but a casual bit of homophobia inside made me put this down.
Literary Everything
May 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Longthroat Memoirs gets top marks for originality. Yemisi identifies a “gap in the market” and sets out to discuss this gap and she does a good job of it. In the book, we read about Nigerian food and the stories behind the food. So, it’s not just a recipe book of Nigerian foods, it looks at the relationship between food and culture and also serves as a travelogue about some parts of Southern Nigeria. Read the full review ...more
Feb 13, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Longthroat Memoirs is a lyrical compilation of essays about Nigerian food – primarily food enjoyed by Cross Riverians and their other South-Eastern counterparts. It's more of a memoir than a cookbook, which I should've guessed given its title, but in my defence I found it in the cookbook section of my local bookstore. Though Longthroat Memoirs features some recipes, I found that the recipes weren’t detailed enough for me.

I really enjoyed this book. I never thought that someone could love food as
Feb 19, 2020 rated it liked it
I enjoyed this book. It was eye opening to learn about ingredients and dishes that I had no idea about! We need more books like these. Books that revel in local cuisine from developing countries - African countries in particular. My only exposure to "African food" has been Ethiopian food. I have heard of jollof rice but never tasted it and I knew a little bit about pepper stew only because I have a Nigerian colleague. What a crying shame though! Such a wasted opportunity.

I too want to eat pepper
Dec 08, 2017 rated it really liked it
Yemisi Aribisala clearly loves food. So do I (but I definitely don't have her talent with it!). And I love learning about food I don't know about and cultures and people I don't know about, so I enjoyed this book very much. I love the way she talks about Nigerian food; it's really fascinating. ...more
Ben Mokaya
Jul 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
First encountered Yemisi through her long essays. Here, she weaves cuisine, sex, culture, and makes for an interesting -though at times, a laborious - read. Also, Nigeria has like millions of condiments and cuisines, my goodness 😀.
Apr 24, 2019 rated it liked it
3.5 stars

Yemisi Aribisala writes freshly + defiantly (not in this book: “it was not my fault if I looked like butter would not melt in my mouth, like innocence and benevolence in a food processor”).

Read this after reading “Bad Woman Meat Pies”, the author's essay which is a perfect blend of recipe + social commentary.

The essays in this book are just as well-crafted but to their detriment, more food less food for thought.
Jul 13, 2020 rated it liked it
Absolutely loved this style of food writing which tells a story behind ingredients and recipes also linking to the cultures. It’s a hard read if like me, you don’t know a lot about Naija food. It’s clearly written for the Nigerian audience but still works, particularly if you are from an African background. I found some of the vocabulary to be too deep English, almost for effect, when simpler words would’ve been more efficient. Great read still
Margery Osborne
Oct 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: memoir, cookbook
Really enjoyed the patois and observations of the marketplace(s) in Nigeria and the food culture. going to try the author's version of jollof rice (my previous attempt was from Marcus Samuelson). am *not* going to try her okra soup...I like my okra crunchy! ...more
Aug 27, 2017 rated it really liked it
To like this book you need to be a foodie who is in love with Africa. And I am happy to be one. It may also appear to people interested in exotic foods and food writing in general.
Sarah Swedberg
Apr 16, 2021 rated it it was ok
I thought I would love this book but I didn’t. It had its moments but I found it tedious. I had to really work to make myself finish it.
Dec 07, 2019 rated it liked it
I did not finish this book before it had to be returned to the library. I *did* make the jollof rice and it was delicious.
Amara Ifeanyi-Okoro
This book is an in-depth into the culture and people surrounding Nigerian food
It may be a difficult read if you're not Nigerian as the author is unapologetic about the use of local names and terms. It reads as a romance between the author and the authenticity of Nigerian food cooked with the vital ingredients and not substitutes. In between pages of the love letter, you would find a recipe here or there.
The author is not opposed to experimenting and adding individuality to the food, but she pol
Sep 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: africa, food, non-fiction
Our soups are some of the best-kept secrets in the world. While the rest of the world has gone on and on about their cuisines, we have remained mute, with out mouths full of food. We love our food but we've not tried to win the world over with it.

Yemisi Aribisala's chronicling of the vastness and complexity of Nigerian cuisine is such a delectable read. You can tell the author is a foodie at heart. Longthroat Memoirs: Soups, Sex and Nigerian Taste Buds weaves together love, sex, history, rec
Sep 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: food-cooking, reviews
I know nothing about Nigerian culture or food but I do love food, and I love reading about food. I don't know whether Yemisi Aribisala can cook well but damn can she write. I flew through this book in a handful of days. I am, by no means, a picky eater but there are certain foods that instinctively gross me out just by virtue of being American. But Yemisi made snails sound delicious. She made okra (that hasn't been fried - I'm Southern) sound delicious. I bookmarked all of the recipes and resear ...more
rated it it was amazing
Jan 02, 2020
Evan Kleiman
rated it it was amazing
Jul 03, 2018
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Apr 13, 2017
rated it really liked it
Feb 10, 2019
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May 28, 2018
rated it liked it
Apr 21, 2019
Nicola Carter-Lando
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Oct 01, 2020
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