Christmas is the time of year to say thanks to all your family and friends who've supported you throughout the year. It's also a perfect moment to restore broken relationships, forgive and share with the less fortunate in society.
The essence of Christmas sometimes is lost, when one only concentrates on what presents they can receive, what to wear, what parties to attend or what they'll eat without including extending a helping hand to the less fortunate.
Christmas needn't be expensive and riddle one with debt, especially when your next pay check will arrive 6 weeks later. Budgeting and being clever with what you give is paramount in achieving a successful Yuletide.
During my childhood in Ghana, Christmas was centred on food, visiting family, friends, sharing food or clothes with a struggling neighbour, going to church and forming new relationships.
I've compiled a series of inspiring, competitively priced recipes and ideas for Christmas presents, which will be featured on my blog till Christmas Eve.
A great and fulfilling thing to do at Christmas is to give to individuals who are less fortunate. Giving to one who cannot reciprocate the favour and knowing you're responsible for placing a smile on their face at Christmas is an amazing feeling. Try it and share your experience.
Homemade presents are a great way of showing appreciation to your loved
ones and equally satisfying to spend the time making it.
I chose to share this recipe as it's a snack that's readily available in Ghana , particularly after church services. Truthfully as a child, I had the dilemma of using the money my Mum gave me for offertory to buying more of the peanut brittle (Nkatie cake) or (Kubey cake)Caramel coconut bites (not a fair choice) than to use it for what was intended. Mum sussed out my dilemma and gave me the eye to let go of the money and rewarded me later with choice. I would love to hear from you about your childhood experience with Nkatie and Kubey cake.
Thanks to everyone who contributed in naming the snack (Peanut brittle) in their respective traditional languages.
Here we have Peanut brittles or Nkatie cake (Ghana), Konkada (Togo) and Granat cake (Sierra Leone). Feel free to share more traditional names by leaving comments below.
For a cost effective way to wrap your present, use a brown or white baking paper and a ribbon for a festive look.
180g of roasted peanuts
150g of caster sugar
100g of glucose syrup
10g of butter
A silicone mat is required for this recipe. However if you don't have one a well oiled surface will be idle
Cashew nuts, Walnuts, Pecans, Pistachios or Hazelnuts
How to roast peanuts
Preheat the oven to 160*c
Evenly spread 250g of raw peanuts in a baking tray.
Place the baking tray in the oven and bake for 10-12 minutes or until it browns slightly.
Remove the tray from the oven and leave the peanuts to cool down completely.
Place the roasted peanuts in a clean Kitchen napkin and rub in between your hands for about 3 minutes.
Shake the nuts (for the skins to settle at the bottom)
Separate the peeled peanuts from the skins and empty the skins in your bin. Place the peeled peanuts in a bowl and set aside.
Light Caramel sauce
Place the sugar and glucose in a heavy based saucepan.
Mix everything together till you have a thick paste.
Ensure the paste is evenly distributed in the saucepan and place on a medium heat.
Watch the sugars dissolve and turn into a plane brown colour. This should take about 7-10 minutes.
Don't be tempted to leave your caramel as it burns quickly.
Remove the caramel from the heat when you've achieved the pale brown colour.
Add the peanuts and butter to the caramel and mix quickly.
Tip the contents on top of the silicon mat and spread evenly using a spatula.
Leave till it cools down and cut lengthways or to your preferred shape.
Store in an airtight container till you're ready to wrap it as a present or serve.
All photos and recipes are by the owner of this blog.
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