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Ontario, Canada
I am a wife, mother and grandma who enjoys the many aspects of homemaking. A variety of interests and hobbies combined with travel keep me active. They reflect the importance of family, friends, home and good food.
Cook ingredients that you are used to cooking by other techniques, such as fish, chicken, or hamburgers. In other words be comfortable with the ingredients you are using.
--Bobby Flay

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Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Christmas Eve 2009

The holiday season brings a wealth and abundance of food! We are very, very blessed that in our family there is considerable diversity which is reflected in the culinary offerings. Christmas Eve is enjoyed at the home of one of my husband's siblings. Everyone gathers mid-afternoon to visit then we have a large meal followed by the little ones opening up a few presents. The get together breaks up around 10ish just in time to get to Midnight Mass.


My MIL was the official kibbeh maker in her family. She passed on the tradition to me so I am now the official kibbeh maker in our family. Kibbeh is a traditional Lebanese dish originally made with ground lamb but we use beef. Now this isn't any ground beef! I deal with a local butcher who still prepares the meat for me the the way my MIL had it prepared. The raw meat is then mixed with seasonings and crushed wheat. The meat is formed into a round loaf shape and refrigerated a couple of hours before serving. Kibbeh is eaten raw on pita bread with a splash of good quality extra virgin olive oil. Any left over kibbeh is baked the following morning to be enjoyed for lunch. Pictured is the kibbeh I made for Christmas Eve and yes that is a dinner plate with a little over 3 lb of kibbeh to be enjoyed.

turkey dinnerTurkey Dinner

It's funny how traditions start then get modified over generations. When I was growing up we enjoed Pork Tourtière (French Canadian Pork Pie) and butter tarts on Christmas Eve. The gathering was always small and quiet. We were tucked into bed early drifting off to visions of Chrismas Day which was also very small, cozy gathering. One thing for sure there would always be an orange waiting for us Christmas Day. I kept that tradition :)

My new in-laws on the other hand had a very large gathering on Christmas Eve complete with a huge meal followed by Midnight Mass then we gathered after mass to open presents. That tradition has been modified to a large meal followed by presents then those who want to go to Midnight Mass do so. Our holiday traditions encompassed those from my in laws and my family as well as those we have created ourselves over the years.

lemon and pumpkin piesLemon Meringue & Pumpkin Pies

Christmas Eve was spent with my husband's side of the family. Dinner was turkey with stuffing (cooked in the bird), mashed potatoes, seasoned corn niblets and sweet potatoes. Dessert was delicious homemade apple, lemon meringue and pumpkin pies along with a large variety of homemade cookies and other goodies.

What is rather interesting is my extended family no longer gives me strange looks when I do a photo shoot of my plate or of any of the wonderful food we share. In fact others have started doing this as well especially to use for scrapbooking. So I've started a bit of a tradition of my own :)

2 food lovers commented:

A Year on the Grill said...

Yeah, my friends and family wait to take their first bite til I have finished y photos... but they eat good, so they are willing to wiat

Garden Gnome said...

That foodie photo shoot is very important when writing a food blog :)