by Daniel Nkado
While I don’t know what a Christmas must-eat in other places is, in Nigeria it is definitely chicken!
Go visiting any Nigerian home on Christmas day and walk quietly to the back yard.
What do you think you are going to see?
Blood and feathers!
A self-organized survey we carried out found that the biggest threat to chicken life in Nigeria is Christmas.
More chicken die on Christmas than by bird flu.
The traditional Christmas meal in Nigeria is rice. Mostly white rice and stew (hardly does anyone prepare fried rice or jollof on Christmas). White and red is the color of Christmas, after all!
But the most peculiar thing about Christmas stews is the chicken. In fact, the stew is basically chicken broth and tomatoes and peppers and Maggi (rich people use Knorr).
Usually, it is the father or first son that kills the Christmas chicken and then throws it off to dance the dance of death.
When finally still, the mother pours boiled water over the poor creature and put it in a bowl or basket for the little cousins and nephews to pluck clean.
Afterwards, the father is re-invited again to dismember the now smooth chicken into appropriate parts.
The mother washes and packs these parts into a pot and adds salt and seasoning.
The smell of the cooking chicken sets off the true mood of Christmas!
Happy Holidays to You All!