Adepoju*, Blessing Chidirim, Oladejo Thomas and Uwaga
Soups are key component of traditional diets, and they play important role in a country’s culture, history, identity and heritage. However, they are usually neglected in meal planning due to lack of information on their nutrient composition, though they are rich source of protein and micronutrients. There is paucity of information on nutrient composition and standard recipes of majority of the soups consumed in Nigeria in the Nigerian Food Composition Table. Standardising the recipes used in cooking as well as providing information on nutrient content of soups will serve good purpose of reference for nutrition practitioners in the discharge of their duties. The study was carried out to standardise the recipes for preparing Ukazi soup commonly consumed in Umuahia, Abia State, Nigeria; and to determine the nutrient content of the standardised soups. Recipes for the soup were collected from two Local Government Areas of Abia State, Nigeria. A total of 110 recipes were obtained from indigenous women and food vendors using pre-tested, interviewer-administered questionnaire. Two soup samples (one without beef and smoked fish, and the other with beef and smoked fish) were prepared using the mean weight of each ingredient. The nutrient and anti-nutrient content of the soup samples were analysed using the standard methods. Data were analysed using descriptive statistics and independent t-test at p<0.05. One hundred gramme portion of the soups contained 37.6 and 33.1 g moisture, 18.8 and 22.8 g protein, 8.7 and 9.8 g fat, 28.9 and 27.0 g carbohydrate, 620 and 810mg potassium, 200 and 240 mg sodium, 200 and 310 mg calcium, 230 and 280 mg phosphorus, 3.42 and 4.72 mg iron, 2.87 and 3.11 mg zinc, and 530.74 and 695.99 μg vitamin A for sample without beef and smoked fish, and sample with beef and smoked fish, respectively (p<0.05). The anti-nutrient composition of the soups was low, and cannot hinder the absorption and utilisation of nutrients in the soups. The soups can contribute significant amount of protein, potassium, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, zinc and vitamin A to daily nutrient requirements of consumers; hence, its consumption should be popularised among other communities of the Southeast zone of the country where the ingredients are readily available, for improved nutrition of the populace.
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