Melbourne's Best Snacks: Adonai Foods' moin moin

Published on 23 September 2021

Photo: Adonai Foods' moin moin (illustration: Ambrose Rehorek and Chanel Tang, Creature Creature)

Savouring a favourite Nigerian food in the heart of Carlton.

Tucked away beneath a block of government flats at the end of a no through road, Adonai is Melbourne's only Nigerian restaurant. Here owner Funmi Ewedairo offers traditional dishes cooked fresh each morning, displayed à la bain-marie.

From the snack department comes moin moin, cylindrical steamed bean cakes that will set you back just $3.50. To prepare them the kitchen painstakingly peels the husks from soaked black-eyed beans, blends the beans with onion, red capsicum, and a little chilli, mixes in trevally and hard-boiled egg, and then steams the mixture in cups till it's cooked through and set.

The result is a spongy, umami-packed snack that also happens to be good for you. "It’s nutritional food. You get a lot of protein and energy," says Ewedairo. "When we start with solid food for our babies, we start with the moin moin. It’s good for them and it digests quickly."

After a decade balancing catering gigs with working for the Department of Human Services and Wesley Mission, Ewedairo opened her Carlton restaurant in 2017. Most of her regulars are African, but she welcomes other customers eager to try her cooking. "It’s in my blood, I love it," she says. "I just like seeing people’s faces when they eat. Good food makes you happy."

Adonai Foods, 478 Drummond St, Carlton,

By Sofia Levin

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