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Posted: Wednesday, August 15, 2018 1:00 am | Updated: 3:33 am, Fri Nov 9, 2018.

Connecting to cultural heritage through the legacy of food

(Family Features) Family bonding provides a unique experience, giving relatives opportunities to grow closer through shared passions. One of the most special ways to connect generations past and present is through food, typically by passing down traditional cuisines or specific recipes.

Because food can be viewed as an expression of cultural identity, it provides a one-of-a-kind connection to ancestors, history and community. Taking a DNA test is one way to discover more about your heritage and gain inspiration for exploring new ingredients, flavors and recipes from your homeland.  

For example, Jocelyn Delk Adams, author of the Grandbaby Cakes blog created this Jollof Rice dish after discovering her roots traced back to Mali, Cameroon, the Republic of the Congo and Ghana. Jollof Rice is a West African classic comprised of fragrant rice steeped in ingredients like meat stock, garlic, onions, tomatoes and spicy chilies for depth of flavor. Rich in taste and history, it’s revered as a sacred dish within some African communities.

If you’ve ever thought about researching your heritage, now can be your opportunity to dig in. Through Aug. 20, AncestryDNA is taking $40 off its DNA kits during its Summer Sale with its lowest onsite price of the year: just $59 (plus taxes and shipping).  

With more than 350 geographical regions and 10 million people in its network, AncestryDNA can connect you to the cultures, cuisines and traditions of your heritage.

To find more information, order your kit and unlock your story, visit

Jollof Rice

Recipe courtesy of Jocelyn Delk Adams of Grandbaby Cakes on behalf of AncestryDNA

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cook time: 30 minutes

Servings: 5-7

  • 2          tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1          cup diced onions
  • 2          tablespoons minced garlic
  • 1          teaspoon minced ginger
  • 1/2-1    habanero pepper, thinly sliced
  • 1          cup uncooked basmati rice
  • 1 1/2    cups chicken stock
  • 1          can (15 ounces) crushed tomatoes
  • 1          teaspoon seasoned salt
  • 1/2       teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/2       teaspoon curry powder
  • 1/2       teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1          fresh bay leaf
  • chopped parsley or bay leaf, for garnish
  1. In large pot over medium heat, heat olive oil. Add onions and saute until tender, cooking approximately 5 minutes. Add minced garlic, ginger and pepper; cook about 30 seconds, making sure not to burn garlic.
  2. Pour in rice and stir to combine. Allow rice to toast in pot 2-3 minutes. 
  3. Add chicken stock, crushed tomatoes, seasoned salt, smoked paprika, curry powder, thyme and bay leaf; stir together then bring to boil. 
  4. Once mixture begins to boil, reduce heat to low and cover pot with lid. Continue cooking rice about 25-30 minutes, or until all liquids evaporate and rice becomes more tender. Remove bay leaf.
  5. Turn off heat and allow rice to rest 10 minutes with lid on. Once rice is completely tender, make sure all ingredients are mixed together. Top with parsley or bay leaf and serve.

Content courtesy of AncestryDNA

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