Scent Leaf Curry Sauce

Nigerian sauce

Scent leaf curry sauce is a new addition to my sauce arsenal. 

I don’t know about you but sometimes I get tired of tomato stew.Though tomato stew is an all time favorite and staple in every Nigerian home; there are times when you just crave something different; your taste buds long for another form of savoury.

And come to think through we can boast of a lot of eating soups; the Nigerian sauce list is quite limited. Apart from tomato stew and egg sauce, we don’t have a variety of sauces to choose from for side dishes like rice, yam etc. After learning the basics for sauce making in cooking school, I have decided to experiment and try out making sauces with more Nigerian ingredients.It always pays to have variety.

Basil sauce

So back to how i discovered the recipe for today. On one of my “craving days” I came across this scent leaf curry sauce on my number one Nigerian food blogger’s site Kitchen Butterfly.I must admit I was a bit skeptical about the contents of of the “scent leaf dip” which is the major ingredient in this sauce, but I bless the day I took a chance and made this sauce.You can find all the ingredients in Nigeria.I made a few modifications to the sauce, but most of the method stays true to her process.Before I forget, since this sauce doesn’t cook for long you should make sure you cut your meat pieces really small Chicken or seafood with be better options, but if you must use beef then use parts without bones or muscle.

I made the terrible mistake of using oxtail forgetting that it takes so long to cook….please don’t make the same mistake;)

The flavours are as enthralling and enticing as the appearance of the sauce. Sweet, savoury and spicy all blend together to give a robust sauce that complimentshe side dishes like rice and boiled yam really well.

Serves:  4-6
Recipe level: Easy
Preparation time: 15minutes
Cook time: 20 minutes
Total time: 35 minutes
Meal type: Sauce/Side Dish
Meal time: Lunch or Dinner
Country/Region: Nigeria

Adapted From: Kitchen Butterfly 


  • 3 tablespoons coconut oil 
  • 1 cup of fresh meat, chicken or beef (cut into tiny cubes)
  • 1 cup chopped garden eggs, about 3 – 4 large ones
  • 1/2 small onion, finely diced
  • 1 small red bell pepper or tatashe, finely diced
  • 1 cup scent leaf dip
  • 1.8 cups or 1 tin (400ml) coconut milk
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder 
  • 1 hot pepper, finely chopped optional
  • Salt, to taste


  1. Season your protein (beef or chicken chunks) with salt and pepper. Add 2 tablespoons of oil to a large frying pan on medium heat; sear the seasoned chicken or beef chunks until the lightly brown for about 2 -3 minutes. Set the meat aside. 
  2. In the same pan, add the onions, red peppers, and garden eggs to the pan and stir-fry for 2 minutes. Remove from the pan and set aside.
  3. Put the third tablespoon of oil and add the scent leaf dip. Cook till fragrant, about 2 – 3 minutes.
  4. Add the curry, coconut milk, and 1 to 2 cups of water
  5. Stir the sauce and allow cook for 3 – 5 minutes
  6. Add the vegetables and meat. Simmer for 10 minutes. Taste and season as needed.
  7. Remove from heat and serve with rice, pasta, or boiled yam.

Scentleaf Curry sauce

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What do you think?