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Kwanzaa Karamu

Kwanzaa (the Swahili word for "the first" or "the first fruits of the harvest") is a celebration of family, community and culture. Although there is no set menu, meals often include traditional Kwanzaa recipes from any of the African countries. On the sixth day of Kwanzaa, December 31, the Kwanzaa karamu (feast) is celebrated. Whether you are having a small get-together or a large community gathering, you can use part or all of this festive Kwanzaa dinner menu.

KwanzaaKaramu_Beauty 

Kwanzaa Party Ideas

Because Kwanzaa spans from December 26 through January 1 and is constantly evolving, there is lots of time and opportunity to include special activities and invent your own traditions, rituals and ways of celebrating. Use the seven principles on which Kwanzaa is based as a vital part of your celebration: Unity (Umoja), Self-Determination (Kujichagulia), Collective Work and Responsibility (Ujima), Cooperative Economics (Ujamaa), Purpose (Nia), Creativity (Kuumba) and Faith (Imani).

Decorate

  • Decorate with the Kwanzaa colors of black, red and green.
  • Include these items for celebrating:
    • Flag (bendera ya taifa)
    • Poster of the seven principles (nguzo saba)
    • Straw mat (mkeka)
    • Candleholder (kinara) with 3 red, 1 black and 3 green candle
    • Bowl of fruit and vegetables (mazao)
    • Ears of corn (muhindi)
    • Unity cup or goblet (kikombe cha umoja)
    • African art
    • Books about Africans and African culture

    Family Activities

    • Create a family tree. Talk about your ancestors and relatives while sharing photographs.
    • Create a song or story.
    • Enjoy movies (from the library or rented) on African culture.
    • Make gifts to share (in addition to the gifts to children of a heritage symbol and book given on January 1). A few food gifts include: Rosemary-Garlic Vinegar, Lickety-Split Spoons and Chex® Caramel Corn.

    Menu

    There's nothing like warm, spicy apple cider to break the ice when you're entertaining on a chilly day.
    full spoonfull spoonfull spoonfull spoonfull spoon (29 ratings)     Member Reviews (3)
    Chilies and salsa turn up the tempo of these corn fritters. Bisquick® mix adds ease in preparation.
    full spoonfull spoonfull spoonfull spoonempty spoon (29 ratings)     Member Reviews (9)
    Impress your family and friends with this hearty soup of zucchini, two kinds of squash and beans. It's easier than you think!
    full spoonfull spoonfull spoonfull spoonempty spoon (9 ratings)     Member Reviews (2)
    The exotic blend of spices that season this chicken will take your taste buds on a global journey.
    full spoonfull spoonfull spoonfull spoonfull spoon (40 ratings)     Member Reviews (16)
    Make this Cajun/Creole dish as spicy as you like.
    full spoonfull spoonfull spoonfull spoonfull spoon (211 ratings)     Member Reviews (113)
    Give this stir-fry version of collard greens a try. It departs from the traditional southern version, but it's definitely worth a taste test!
    full spoonfull spoonfull spoonfull spoonempty spoon (20 ratings)     Member Reviews (6)
    Take a taste adventure! This dish of gently simmered squash and yams is flavored with coconut milk, cinnamon and cloves.
    full spoonfull spoonfull spoonhalf spoonempty spoon (11 ratings)     Member Reviews (1)
    A spicy (but not too hot) chili dressing coats this sensational veggie salad.
    full spoonfull spoonfull spoonfull spoonempty spoon (16 ratings)     Member Reviews (0)
    You'll have the best bread basket in town when you fill it with this fragrant, spicy bread.
    full spoonfull spoonfull spoonfull spoonempty spoon (5 ratings)     Member Reviews (2)
    Do you have 15 minutes to spare? Surprise your family by baking a batch of these restaurant-style biscuits!
    full spoonfull spoonfull spoonfull spoonhalf spoon (471 ratings)     Member Reviews (157)
    An amazingly simple combination resulting in a mouthwatering masterpiece!
    full spoonfull spoonfull spoonfull spoonempty spoon (10 ratings)     Member Reviews (1)
    A shortcut because it begins with a mix, this pound cake is moist and full of seductive butter-rum flavor.
    full spoonfull spoonfull spoonfull spoonfull spoon (65 ratings)     Member Reviews (26)
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