Christmas all over the world



Fire of the mountain – Ghana

A great part of the holidays is spent for the return to the ancestor’s village and for visits to family and friends, no matter what the religion is (or in the case of absence of the same). On late afternoon of December 24th, Ghananians are enjoying their Christmas dinner: chicken, lamb, goat meat of beef with rice and hot spices and fresh fruit for dessert. Later many visit the local church, and afterwards there is a parade with music through the village.

Christmas day starts with a breakfast made of crushed yams and hard-boiled eggs. After attending church in the morning little children are receiving presents. There is chocolate – mostly imported than local, because something imported is considered as a precious gift and cookies, maybe some shoes from Santa Claus (who was introduced in the colonial era). Everybody exchanges Afishapa, which means „Merry Christmas and a happy New Year“. A special yellow flower is blooming in the town’s squares that is called „fire of the mountain“ and only blooms during Christmas time. To the Ghananians it symbolizes the miracle of the birth of Jesus.

The streets of the town are crowded and a lot of activity and noise is going on. People are trying everything to catch a glimpse of the carneval procession of the youth in their fantastic costumes. This tradition was possibly inspired by the Brasilian carneval and has become a part of Christmas in Ghana.


Beef stew with Fufu serving 8 persons

  • 800 g lean beef to braise
  • 100 ml oil for roasting
  • 2 large onions
  • 2 bell peppers
  • 6 peeled large tomatoes or diced tomatoes
  • salt
  • 300 g sweet potatoe/batata
  • 300g carrots
  • 100g potatoes
  • ½ l vegetable broth


  1. Cut beef in slices. Peel onions, cut in half and slice. Cut bell peppers in half, remove pits and stems and cut in large squares. Remove stems from tomatoes and slice. Dice carrots, potatoes and sweet potatoes.
  2. Sauté meat in oil and put aside. Sauté onions and vegetable in oil in the same pan for 5 minutes. Add tomatoes and cook on high heat for 3 to 5 minutes. Add beef and cook the stew for at least 90 minutes on low heat till the meat is very soft. Season to taste


Serve with couscous or bulgur

Please note, that we have changed the original a little.

Quelle: Christmas cooking Hanne Kruse Fonaverlag