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Holiday Eating

December 30, 2009

For many people, the holidays means a glut of sweets .  The numerous dinners with different iterations of the family probably doesn’t help the overwhelming feeling of over-fullness.  However, they are also meals that people look forward to all year long (or at least part of the year!).  What types of food traditions do you have?  Have you changed any of your foodie traditions?

For Christmas eve every year, my family has fresh dungenous crab.  We’ve been doing this for as long as I can remember — well before it caught on.  Now you go to the grocery store on Christmas eve morning to be greeted by a line of people waiting to get their crab fix.  People used to be surprised when my Mom announced that we always have crab for dinner on Christmas eve… sadly (because I liked being different) that is a thing of past now.  Crab was originally my mom’s solution to the need to have a good dinner that was relatively easy to put on the table and could be scaled up to serve the larger group of people (grandparents, aunts, uncles…) who would be joining us for Christmas eve.

Christmas eve dessert is another foodie tradition that is unwavering for us.  We always have See’s candy.  I think maybe this started because my grandparents always used to bring a box for Christmas eve.  Now, even though they are no longer with us, we continue to pass a box around vying for the best pieces.

You might be thinking, “Wow, how boring! The same stuff every year!”  While our Christmas eve tradition may remain the same year after year, this New Year’s will not duplicate any previous New Year’s Eve.  After the massive onslaught of rich, fatty foods throughout this holiday season, we’ve opted for a lighter option.  We’re going with a sort-of Mediterranean finger food theme.  So instead of having just one main course and a couple of sides, there will be loads of small bites that people can help themselves to.  We’ll have hummus with pita bread, tapenade and homemade bread, home cured olives, stuffed mushrooms, and some mini-meatballs (for the people who just have to have some meat with their meal) and tomato feta dipping sauce.  Still thinking about a couple of more additions.  Let me know if you have any suggestions! Of course, we’ll also have some champagne for our midnight toast!

I’m in charge of all of this… so I guess I’d better get cooking!  See you in the new year!

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