Suya goat kebabs

by Zoe Adjonyoh

Tender goat meat marinated in smoky Nigerian spices

The mighty suya is the king of barbecue spices in Nigeria. Its smoky flavours are perfect with the gamey tenderness of goat meat. You will have plenty of spice rub left over at the end of this recipe that can be used as a marinade on any red meats or to spice up a roast chicken. I’ve recently been making suya-spiced halloumi burgers with peanut sauce, which have been a huge hit on the festival circuit.  


For the suya spice rub:
100g roasted peanuts, coarsely ground
3 cloves of garlic, minced
5cm ginger, grated
1 tsp cayenne pepper or red chilli flakes (for extra heat)
1 tsp smoked paprika
2 tbsp groundnut or vegetable oil
A pinch of sea salt

For the kebabs:
500g boneless goat leg, diced
1 large red onion
1-2 red, green or yellow peppers (mixed colours if possible)

For the garnish:
A pinch of chilli powder
50g roasted peanuts, crushed
A few sprigs of fresh coriander


Mix all the spice rub ingredients together in a bowl.

Depending on how spicy you like your food, add 25-50g of the suya spice mix to the diced goat and massage it thoroughly into the meat.

Peel and quarter the red onion, then deseed and cut the peppers into chunks. Thread the onion, peppers and goat meat onto wooden or bamboo skewers. As ever, the longer you can leave your meat to marinate the better, so if you have time, leave the skewers in the fridge for at least 1-2 hours or preferably overnight.

Take the skewers out of the fridge and sit at room temperature for a few minutes while you heat the grill or griddle pan.

Baste the meat with a little groundnut oil and season with sea salt and black pepper before putting it under the grill or onto the griddle—it should sizzle, but don’t move it! Turn only every 2 mins, once each side is seared through (for medium-rare), or every 3 mins on each side for well done.

Allow to rest for 2 mins, then scatter over the crushed peanuts and chilli powder. Tear over the coriander leaves, then serve with a side of plantain (recipe below).

Recipe: Zoe Adjonyoh
Image: John Holdship