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4.75 from 4 votes
Koki corn recipe
Koki Corn
Prep Time
30 mins
Cook Time
30 mins
Total Time
1 hr

This is the recipe for Cameroonian fresh corn tamales which are made by wrapping ground corn in banana leaves then steaming until done. It is vegan, requires minimal ingredients and so delicious! Though it is vegan, I love serving it with some sort of protein on the side like my perfect grilled chicken to make for a balanced meal. You could serve with any protein you prefer.

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Cameroonian
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 415 kcal
Author: Precious of preciouscore.com
  • 4 cups fresh corn (cut off about 8 ears of corn), 660 grams subsitute with frozen sweet corn or canned sweet corn
  • 1 cup yellow corn meal or corn flour, 120 grams
  • 3/4 cup palm oil, 150 grams
  • 1 cup freshly chopped spinach or cocoyam (taro) leaves
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 small seasoning cubes (Maggi) substitute with half a teaspoon of bouillon powder
  • 1/2 onion - chopped optional
  • 1/2-1 hot (habanero) pepper optional
  • 4-6 banana leaves - warmed over a flame or immersed in hot water to wilt and thoroughly rinsed (substitute with aluminium foil) cut into long rectangles
  1. Pour palm oil into a skillet to warm for a few minutes (about 2-3 minutes). Do NOT bleach it.

  2. Pour the corn, onion and hot pepper into a blender or food processor. Add 1/4 cup of water and blend or process into a coarsely ground paste. Note that you do not want to blend this into a fine paste. You should still be able to see bits and pieces of corn when done.

  3. Pour the ground corn into a bowl, add corn meal, the heated oil and mix well. Add salt, Maggi then mix. 

  4. Add in the chopped leaves and mix until well incorporated.

  5. To prepare pot. Line the bottom of a pot with empty cobs of corn. This creates a base that helps prevent water from getting into the Koki Corn. Now pour about half a cup of water into the pot and bring to a gentle boil while you proceed to wrap the Koki Corn.

  6. When done with wrapping and all the bundles are in the pot, cover them with some more banana leaves (mostly the ones that got torn and were unusable) or aluminium foil. This helps to prevent the steam from escaping during cooking. Place lid on the pot and cook for about 30 minutes. Every 5-10 minutes, open pot and add in about half cup of water so it doesn't dry out.

  7. Let it rest for about 10 minutes when cooked. Then unravel and serve warm.

Recipe Notes
  1. If using hard African corn, you will not need to add corn meal to your mixture. The corn is starchy enough and will hold well. Howver, if you are using soft sweet corn, adding corn meal is a must. Without this, your Koki Corn won't hold as a cake. It will turn out mushy.
  2. I have found that corn flour is a great replacement for corn meal in this recipe. 
  3. I once added crayfish (small dried shrimp) to my Koki Corn mixture and it tasted so good! You could try this too.