Saturday 26 December 2009

What rice for Christmas

Up and about late

My Christmas day was a very slow start, it was probably well into the afternoon before I managed to slip out of bed by which time a number of phone calls and text messages had come through that I did not get to handle because my phone was in vibrate mode having been set to that ay church the day before at the Christmas carol service.

When I did get up my friend was already cooking the beef and tripe but was unsure of what we should have for Christmas lunch.

Rices for choice

There was one for making stew and white rice, the other for making jollof rice and fried plantains. Considering I had put much stock into acquiring ingredients suitable for jollof rice, we went for that and postponed the making of stew till later.

So, there I was in the kitchen, softening the dried barracuda fish cuts in hours of boiling and preparing the seasoning for the jollof rice – my eventual scheme involved first frying the rice and then pouring the cooked vegetables and seasoning into the rice afterwards.

The plantains then went into the electric fryer and within 90 minutes we were done for our Christmas meal which we had to the strains of the gospel of Saint Matthew.

Giving Jesus a look in

An interesting difference that started with the nativity story through the ministry of Jesus Christ, there was no way the significance of Christmas would be lost on Christmas day.

Unfortunately, by the time we settled down, the Queen’s speech was over and television was a bit of a drag between those who are fed up with Christmas and those who make Christmas a complete fawning annoyance – forget the religious significance, Jesus nowadays cannot get to blow the candles on His birthday that is if he ever gets invited in.

After a few cups of Smokey Earl Grey tea, it was really time to put our feet up or in my case lie down on the inflatable mattress and watch television through shuttered eyelids.

Of Christmases past

It is a long way from my Christmas days in Lancashire where after dinner my surrogate mum, my dear friend’s mother tries to get us out of the house looking for Sambo the slave who was buried some 200 plus years ago in some windswept wilderness whose grave still gets tended today or plodding in the snow where my wish for the sun is so intense, I cry for warmth.

In truth, my last three Christmases were spent in the sun in Gran Canaria, the memories of being at the beach at Christmas are fond.

As the night drew nigh, my friend suggested we watch his District 9 DVD; there has been much Nigerian angst about the film, it was important I had a good viewing before i comment on the film – this was a good opportunity to do that.

Christmas was quiet, good, fun and wonderful; I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas day too.

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