Jollof Rice

Relationship: Child of im/migrant
Jollof Rice
Jollof Rice

This is Jollof rice. It’s a popular spiced rice dish that can be found in parts of West Africa(mainly Nigeria, Ghana and Senegal). It’s believed to originate from the senegambian region(modern day Senegal) among the Wolof people between the 14th and 16th century. They called it Benachin at the time. It contains tomato paste, onions, long grain rice and spices. Sometimes a meat broth can also be added. It now has multiple variations from the original recipe due to the frequent cultural exchange that happens throughout West Africa. For years, Nigerians, Senegalese and ghanian people have been arguing about who has the best jollof rice? Each variation of jollof rice is uniquely different from each other, in one way or another. Some say the original recipe from the Senegalese is the best while others say their verison is the best. It’s gotten so bad that recently people can’t even say what their favorite version of jollof out of fear of causing a mini arguments, especially on social media. Overall, it’s a fun competitive food fight across the west african countries. 

My mom learned how to make Jollof when she was a teenager. She’s a Nigerian and her mom and dad are first generation Nigerians as well. She learned her recipe of Jollor rice from her mom when she was a teenager which she then progressively changed as she made it more. Jollof rice is one of my favorite comfort foods as it allows me to embody a huge part of my heritage. I’m a second generation Nigerian and I’ve been raised with many of the Nigerian beliefs and values throughout my life.

Place(s): Nigeria

– Charles Fagbohun

Relationship:  Child of im/migrant Child of im/migrant