10 April 2012
Peanut Butter, known as 'Odii' in Uganda, is a delicious sandwich filler, made completely from natural ingredients. It is derived from a mixture of roasted groundnuts (peanuts) and simsim (sesame) seeds. It is commonly used as a sandwich filler, but also in various local Ugandan dishes.
Peanut Butter production is one of the projects that Watoto has developed to empower formerly disenfranchised women in the Living Hope initiative. The unit has equipped women to earn a living, enabling them to care for their families.
When making 'Odii', the ladies use groundnut and simsim seeds grown on Watoto farms. These seeds are cleaned up and roasted. When ready, they are sorted using a local method of winnowing the seeds in wide-set baskets. It takes seven ladies about ten minutes to sort a full basket. When the seeds are sorted from the remaining chaff, the product is weighed and then seeds are mixed, using a ratio of 1:2 groundnuts to simsim.
The ladies blend the mixture in a grinding mill and it’s churned - a process that takes about thirty minutes. When it has become a soft, smooth russet brown paste, it is packaged into smaller containers ready to be transported to the market.
Derived from a simple recipe inherent and natural to Ugandans and particularly, northern Ugandans, the project is a tool to empower a people who have been stripped of dignity and value; to become productive citizens, who are able to take care of themselves and their families.
Peanut Butter production is one of many income-generating projects that Watoto has developed to help restore dignity to formerly vulnerable women in the Living Hope initiative. But it's only a part of a greater story of transformation and healing.
Watch the Restore northern Uganda video for the full story. Also look out for Return To Dignity, a new book by Living Hope founder Marilyn Skinner, chronicling the inspiring and courageous stories of these wonderful women.
And for more information about Living Hope and Watoto, click here.