Christmas in Nigeria -- Jollof Rice

Today we get to share our post for Christmas in Different Lands. Before we do, however, I want to share a quote from Hazel: "Next year you should pick four countries and cook something from each one for each week of Advent to post on your blog."

We decided to explore Nigeria because Hazel wanted to learn more about it. One of her best friends' family is from Nigeria, so I asked her mother for information. So much of this information is straight from someone who grew up there and still has family there.

This year the group decided to focus on one special food from the country, and my friend told me that would be Rice Jollof. She suggested this recipe from Sisi Jemimah for Party Rice Jollof. I looked at the recipe and made a few tweaks to get my family to eat it and did not tell them what was in it because they wouldn't have eaten it if they knew. I took out the Scotch Bonnet Pepper and cut the entire recipe in half since we were not having a party.

Nigerian Rice Jollof

1 onion
2 medium red peppers
1 can diced tomatoes
3 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 teaspoon curry powder
1/2 teaspoon thyme
1 teaspoon white pepper
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon or 1 cube chicken broth bullion 
1 cup chicken broth (or beef)
2 cups easy cook rice
1 tablespoon butter
minced ginger (about an inch of fresh ginger)

1) In food processor put half the onion, the peppers, and tomatoes and process to smooth paste.
2) In large pot warm oil and add the other half of the onion sliced. Cook until fragrant.
3) Add the pepper blend, curry powder, thyme, 1/2 teaspoon white pepper, bay leaves, and bullion to the pot. Fry covered for about 10-15 minutes.
4) While that cooks rinse the rise.
5) Add chicken broth to the pot and cook for another 8-10 minutes.
6) Add the rice and stir. Then add butter, ginger, and 1/2 teaspoon white pepper. Cover and cook until rice is soft. Stir while cooking so rice doesn't burn too much.
7) Enjoy!! (You can add onion rings and tomatoes at the end for garnish.)

Overall we liked it. It was spicy for us how I made it so I am glad I didn't use the hot pepper. Often it is served with a meat or chicken. My friend says often with stewed chicken.

Nigerians usually go to church on Christmas morning and then gather with family to have a Christmas dinner. After dinner families often go party hopping. There are many parties on Christmas Day! 
Popular Street in Lagos, Nigeria (sent to me by my friend)

Nigerians have Christmas trees. Many use palm trees and some of the wealthier ones buy evergreen ones that are shipped in from Europe. The ornaments are similar to what is used in Europe and the United States. They have a Father Christmas. He does not come down the chimney though since they do not have chimneys. They also do give gifts but many like to give money.
Fruit Cake Photo My Friend Sent Me

My friend mentioned that her in-laws have given fruit cakes to their family and friends every Christmas for the past 30 years!! The other thing she remembers from growing up is Christmas crackers. There are tutorials to make your own around the internet. Here is one at Oh Happy Day.

ChristmasCrackers 2
Christmas Crackers By en:User:Cgros841
(Image:ChristmasCrackers.jpg) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

So Christmas in Nigeria includes church, family, partying and friends. I hope you will check out these other explorations of Christmas in Different Lands and try some of the fun recipes shared!!

Christmas in Different Lands 2015 | Multicultural Kid Blogs 
 Welcome to our fourth annual Christmas in Different Lands series! This year each participating blogger will focus on a different country, sharing a traditional dish and more about Christmas in that country. For even more glimpses of global Christmas celebrations, see our series from previous years (2013, 2014, and 2015), plus follow our Christmas board on Pinterest! Follow Multicultural Kid Blogs's board Christmas Around the World on Pinterest.
December 5 Crafty Moms Share: Nigeria
December 7 English Wife Indian Life: India
December 8 Living Ideas: Indonesia
December 9 Creative World of Varya: Lebanon
December 12 Hanna Cheda on Multicultural Kid Blogs: Poland
December 13 the piri-piri lexicon: Portugal
December 14 Raising a Trilingual Child: Italy
December 15 Let the Journey Begin: Latvia Spanglish Monkey: Spain
December 16 Pack-n-Go Girls: Austria
December 19 Uno Zwei Tutu on Multicultural Kid Blogs: Colombia
December 20 Multicultural Baby: Paraguay
December 21 La Clase de Sra. DuFault: Chile
December 23 All Done Monkey: Haiti
Celebrate Christmas Around the World Printable Pack from Multicultural Kid Blogs
Don't miss our other posts about Christmas in different lands, plus our printable pack Celebrate Christmas Around the World, on sale now!