Tag Archives: Christmas Jumpers

Christmas Traditions, Treats and a little Trivia…

 

Welcome to this week’s additions of Christmas treats and traditions…Not long now and I have sprouts and parsnips bought over from the UK so I am a happy bunny…

How are your preparations going are your presents all wrapped? Shopping is done? Tree decorated? If so well done…

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The Christmas tree …I have seen a few magazine headings saying real or artificial? I have always had a real tree and that was that… Like many things Christmas…You don’t get a real tree here and somehow a palm or banana tree although they look very nice with lights on are a tad too big to bring inside…So it is now artificial I am also the only one for miles around who has a decorated tree in the window…

For me, however,, there is nothing as pretty as a tree covered in snow such a beautiful sight.

In India however, Instead of having traditional Christmas Trees they do decorate banana or mango trees.

In Southern India, Christians often put small oil burning clay lamps on the flat roofs of their homes to show their neighbours that Jesus is the light of the world.

Christians in Mumbai use many Christmas traditions from Goa including the star lanterns and the stable manger scenes.

In India, Father Christmas or Santa Claus delivers presents to children from a horse and cart. He’s known as ‘Christmas Baba’ in Hindi, ‘Baba Christmas’ in Urdu (Father Christmas); ‘Christmas Thaathaa’ in Tamil and ‘Christmas Thatha’ in Telugu ( Christmas old man); and ‘Natal Bua’ (Christmas Elder Man) in Marathi. In Kerala state, he’s known as ‘Christmas Papa’.

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Did you know? Christmas was illegal in England between 1647 and 1660 as Puritan Oliver Cromwell deemed it to be immoral to hold a celebration on one of the churches holiest days.

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Did you know? “The Night of the Radishes” is one of the annual Christmas customs in Oaxaca, Mexico. On December 23rd, The Night of the Radishes (Noche de Los Rábanos in Spanish) is an annual event in the city of Oaxaca, Mexico, dedicated to the carving of oversized radishes. The event has its origins in the colonial period when radishes were introduced by the Spanish. Oaxaca has a long wood carving tradition and farmers began carving radishes into figures as a way to attract customers’ attention at the Christmas market, which was held in the main square on December 23. In 1897, the city created the formal competition. As the city has grown, the city has had to dedicate land to the growing of the radishes as the event has become very popular attracting over 100 contestants and thousands of visitors. However, since the radishes wilt soon after cutting the works can only be displayed for a number of hours, which has led to very long lines for those wishing to see the works.

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Did you know? The Advent wreath began in Germany as a Lutheran tradition but eventually spread to other Christian denominations, including the Catholic and Episcopalian Churches. The evergreen wreath traditionally has four candles around the edge to mark the four weeks before Christmas and a white candle in the centre (to be lit on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day). It may also be adorned with berries or pinecones. The weekly lighting of each candle may be accompanied by prayer, Christmas carols, and/or snacks such as stollen or mulled wine of which I have some fond memories of sipping while I walked around the Christmas Market a lovely tradition.

Mulled Wine.

Ingredients:
  • 1 bottle/750 mL red wine (suggestions: Cabernet Sauvignon, Zinfandel, Merlot)
  • 1 orange (peeled and sliced; keep peel to add zest to taste into cooking pot)
  • 1/4 cup brandy ish…lol
  • 8 to 10 cloves or 5-star anise
  • 1/3 cup honey (or sugar)
  • 3 cinnamon sticks.
  • 1 tsp fresh ginger

Gently warm the ingredients on low to medium heat (avoid boiling), for 20 to 25 minutes. Stir occasionally to make sure that the honey or sugar has dissolved completely. When the wine is steaming and the ingredients have been well blended it is ready to serve.

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Christmas Jumper Corner:

Empty!

No one sent me any pictures…Boo Hoo…Sob…

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Turkey…In the Uk approx 76% of homes serve up a turkey in the US it is a staggering 46 million turkeys eaten on Thanksgiving and 22 million at Christmas but at least you can just put the turkey in the oven and enjoy your celebrations…Not so easy for some  The Puerto Rican national dish is the roast suckling pig known as lechón, and this almighty beast needs the more-or-less constant attention of at least two people as it slowly turns on an outdoor spit from as early as two in the morning.

To while away the long hours cranking the handle with a coconut shell full of coquito, a festive Puerto Rican spin on eggnog made with coconut milk, condensed milk and a hearty dash of rum is somewhat of a consolation…

Who remembers eggnog? Who still drinks eggnog…I haven’t had it for years… I remember my nana giving me a sneaky sip of hers sneaky because I think it may have had a little something added…lol

For the recipe courtesy of Sally @ Smorgasbord…
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Just in case you missed it my traditional Christmas Menu was published on Wednesday…
If you are like me  I always like to have at least one new dish on the Christmas Dinner table I hope you find at least one new dish here to try…Enjoy!

 

I hope you have enjoyed this Christmas post of Traditions and treats and I would like to thank everyone who has made a contribution I think most bloggers love it when you get some interaction with your posts it makes the time spent very worthwhile so thank you and please if you have any favourite Christmas Tips, recipes anything please share with us xxx

About Carol Taylor:

Enjoying life in The Land Of Smiles I am having so much fun researching, finding new, authentic recipes both Thai and International to share with you. New recipes gleaned from those who I have met on my travels or are just passing through and stopped for a while. I hope you enjoy them.

I love shopping at the local markets, finding fresh, natural ingredients, new strange fruits and vegetable ones I have never seen or cooked with. I am generally the only European person and attract much attention and I love to try what I am offered and when I smile and say Aroy or Saab as it is here in the north I am met with much smiling.

Some of my recipes may not be in line with traditional ingredients and methods of cooking but are recipes I know and have become to love and maybe if you dare to try you will too. You will always get more than just a recipe from me as I love to research and find out what other properties the ingredients I use contain to improve our health and wellbeing.

Exciting for me hence the title of my blog, Retired No One Told Me! I am having a wonderful ride and don’t want to get off, so if you wish to follow me on my adventures, then welcome! I hope you enjoy the ride also and if it encourages you to take a step into the unknown or untried, you know you want to…….Then, I will be happy!

Carol is a contributor to the Phuket Island Writers Anthology: https://www.amazon.com/Phuket-Island-Writers-Anthology-Stories-ebook/dp/B00RU5IYNS

Connect to Carol

Blog: https://blondieaka.wordpress.com/
Twitterhttps://twitter.com/TheRealCarolT
Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/carol.taylor.1422

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/caroltaylor56/pins/

Thank you once again for reading this post I hope you all have a great weekend xx

Christmas…Traditions,Treats…and Festive Fun!

Christmas Traditions treats and sweaters

This week I have lots of treats and traditions for you and a sprinkling of trivia…Where to start?

I have had a great response to my call out for  Christmas Jumpers OR is it Sweaters?… I think that is dependent on where in this big wide world you live… Do you call them Jumpers or Sweaters or more to the point what would you like me to call them?? Or shall we just beg to differ as we all know what I am talking about?

Christmas Jumper Corner:

You have probably noticed the two little dogs posing in their Christmas finery in the top image…Little Cubby belonged to Tori who writes some beautiful children’s books and Franck ( who never smiles) belongs to my son …Now Franck has a wardrobe many of us girls would envy a coat for every occasion and I haven’t seen him wear any with a smile…Yet!

 

Thank you to Franck, Cubby and Keto who make excellent models for showing us your Christmas finery …Applause xx

So come on let’s have your Christmas finery be it human or animal…xx

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Did you know? There are 12 courses in the traditional Ukrainian Christmas Eve supper, each of them dedicated to one of Christ’s apostles.

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Silent Night: A beautiful Christmas Carol…

Darlene said…

I love Silent Night but prefer it in German. The original version Stille Nacht was written 200 years ago, in 1818 by Pastor Joseph Mohr in the small Austrian village of Oberndorf, the music composed by his friend Franz Gruber. This popular song is 200 years old this Christmas!!

Darlene is the author of The Amanda Books and she has also followed my blog from day one…Thank you Darlene xxx

Hugh said:

As for a favourite version of Silent Night, I rather like the haunting version Sinéad O’Connor did. Listening to her singing Silent Night…

Do you have a favourite version of Silent Night…?

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Christmas Cocktails…Silent Night!

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Kivak is also known as Mutak or Xmas Catap is an unusual Christmas treat but not if you have a delicate tummy or are fainthearted…Made from dead fermented birds, preserved in a hollowed out Seals body for a minimum of 3 months and often much longer. The taste like very mature cheese so I am told…

http://www.foodista.com/blog/2012/02/15/stinky-foods-10-weird-facts-about-kiviak

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Did you know the answer?…  Two of Santa’s reindeer are named after weather phenomenon. Name the reindeer.

Tidalscribe did…Donner and Blitzen – thunder and lightning in German?

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My blogging friend Tanya who has an absolutely delightful name for her blog one of my favourite flavours for ice cream Salted caramel said…

This post has reminded me of Agatha Christie’s book The Adventure of the Christmas Pudding and Hercule Poirot s Christmas. Agatha Christie’s descriptions of food are as good as Enid Blyton’s whose books I adored as a child.

Books I haven’t read for many a year but they delighted me then and I think a lovely Christmas present for today’s child who loves books… some of the classics are timeless in their appeal don’t you think?

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Did you know? Most people think Japanese cuisine is relatively healthy and think seafood and rice. So it may come as a surprise to know that family Christmas tradition in Japan includes eating their big holiday meal at fast food giant KFC!

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 Round glass Christmas ornaments were inspired by the shape of apples. Apples were the original Christmas ornaments, put on the tree to symbolize the Garden of Eden.

christmas-bauble-15738_640

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I can’t think of anything that bacon doesn’t go with can you? One of our Christmas favourites and it has even tempted the man who hates dates but his love of cheese and bacon has overridden that and he had to admit that ” They are ok”..Really? How many have you eaten?

Although I did call them by their given name and didn’t just say dates wrapped in bacon and cheese…I like to vary the cheese… you can use cream cheese, cheddar or even a piece of blue cheese which is my favourite.

Devils on Horseback:

devils on horseback

  • 1 pack of pitted dates
  • 1/2 pack of regular (not thick cut) bacon, sliced into 1/4’s
  • 4 ounces of cheese…

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).

Let’s Cook!

Cut date halfway through and open them up.  Put a  teaspoon size piece of cheese inside. Wrap a 1/4 slice of bacon around the outside.

Secure each one with a toothpick or put five or six on a skewer. Place on a rack above a foil-lined pan to catch the drippings.

Bake for about 15 minutes, turn dates over and bake for another 10 minutes or so until bacon is crisp and dates are slightly caramelised.

Serve warm or at room temperature.

Enjoy!

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One of my favourite Christmas Traditions has to be the one that many people in Iceland uphold people will often exchange books on Christmas Eve, then spend the rest of the night reading them and eating chocolate…How good is that? x

The tradition is part of a season called Jolabokaflod, or “The Christmas Book Flood.” As a result, Iceland publishes more books per capita than any other country selling most of them between September and November.

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christmas-baubles-1806968_1920

I hope you have enjoyed this Christmas post of Traditions and treats and I would like to thank everyone who has made a contribution I think most bloggers love it when you get some interaction with your posts it makes the time spent very worthwhile so thank you and please if you have any favourite Christmas Tips, recipes anything please share with us xxx

About Carol Taylor:

Enjoying life in The Land Of Smiles I am having so much fun researching, finding new, authentic recipes both Thai and International to share with you. New recipes gleaned from those who I have met on my travels or are just passing through and stopped for a while. I hope you enjoy them.

I love shopping at the local markets, finding fresh, natural ingredients, new strange fruits and vegetable ones I have never seen or cooked with. I am generally the only European person and attract much attention and I love to try what I am offered and when I smile and say Aroy or Saab as it is here in the north I am met with much smiling.

Some of my recipes may not be in line with traditional ingredients and methods of cooking but are recipes I know and have become to love and maybe if you dare to try you will too. You will always get more than just a recipe from me as I love to research and find out what other properties the ingredients I use contain to improve our health and wellbeing.

Exciting for me hence the title of my blog, Retired No One Told Me! I am having a wonderful ride and don’t want to get off, so if you wish to follow me on my adventures, then welcome! I hope you enjoy the ride also and if it encourages you to take a step into the unknown or untried, you know you want to…….Then, I will be happy!

Carol is a contributor to the Phuket Island Writers Anthology: https://www.amazon.com/Phuket-Island-Writers-Anthology-Stories-ebook/dp/B00RU5IYNS

Connect to Carol

Blog: https://blondieaka.wordpress.com/
Twitterhttps://twitter.com/TheRealCarolT
Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/carol.taylor.1422

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/caroltaylor56/pins/

Thank you once again for reading this post I hope you all have a great weekend xx

 

Christmas…Treats, Traditions and Trivia!

Christmas Traditions Treats and Trivia

Welcome to week 2 Of Christmas traditions, Treats and of course some Trivia. 

You can also expect tried and tested recipes which were passed down from my mum, recipes I have been given by friends and family from all over the world and which are now our family favourites. Traditions there are many Christmas traditions practised  around the world and I will be bringing you some of those and anyone who wishes to contribute with a guest post of their own on a special Thanksgiving dish or tradition then you would be very welcome to showcase them here as I know my friends across the pond and my relatives celebrate Thanksgiving on the 22nd November and have turkey and lots of other goodies … So please share and I will link back to your post…

Early images of Santa pictured him as a stern, commanding disciplinarian holding a birch rod. The jolly old Santa we know and love today was created by artist Haddon Sundblom for a Coca-Cola ad.

From 1931 to 1964, Coca-Cola advertising showed Santa delivering toys (and playing with them!), pausing to read a letter and enjoy a Coke, visiting with the children who stayed up to greet him, and raiding the refrigerators at a number of homes. The original oil paintings Sundblom created were adapted for Coca-Cola advertising in magazines and on store displays, billboards, posters, calendars and plush dolls. Many of those items today are popular collectables… I would love to have one as I have a small collection of Christmas memorabilia mostly crockery and tableware…

christmas-cracker-3012548_640

Pastry cook Tom Smith invented Christmas Crackers around 1846. He was inspired by the French habit of wrapping sugared almonds in twists of paper as gifts. Love messages called ” kiss mottos were in the original crackers which didn’t crack until a while later…Tom used to distribute his crackers to customers and friends through his successful wedding cake ornament and confectionery business he did, however, realise that he had to come up with a unique idea to make them more saleable. It is said that he got the idea of a pop from listening to logs crackling on the fire.

He had the idea of incorporating a friction activated chemical explosion into his product to produce the necessary ‘popping’ sound.

Silver fulminate, a compound discovered by the English chemist Edward Charles Howard (1774 – 1816) in 1800 and further developed in 1802 by the Italian chemistry professor, Luigi Valentino Brugnatelli (1761 – 1818).

This eventually became the cracker snap of today and Tom Smith’s Christmas Crackers were born.

I find it fascinating how many ideas evolve and develop…Don’t you?

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Did you know?

Fruitcake originated in ancient Egypt, where it was considered essential for the afterlife.

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Christmas Pudding ...Have you made yours yet?? If not I have added the link for two Christmas pudding recipes one Gluten Free…

Christmas Pudding

Originally way back in ancient times, there was a sweet haggis called hackin made from oatmeal, dried fruit, suet and grated apple and then cooked like its savoury Scots relative the haggis by boiling it in a sheep’s stomach.

Often a Christmas pudding is wrongly thought to be an adaption of a spicy soup called potage…However, according to early records, potage and hackin were served side by side on Christmas menus.

Through the year this sweet hackin has evolved and it became more than just a tasty treat Small items such as coins (wealth) and buttons (bachelorhood) were put inside, and supposedly foretold what the New Year would bring. I remember my nan putting a silver sixpence in her pudding mix …Just the one and we all hoped we would get it but I am also sure there must have been many which were swallowed or cause a cracked tooth maybe that was why the tradition stopped.

Now they are just a beautiful rich steamed pudding with the fruit steeped in alcohol…rich and lovely…

adult-carrot-celebration-721167 (1)

Who still puts out a plate with a mince-pie and a carrot on Christmas Eve for Santa and his reindeer???

How’s this for a weird Christmas food? 

I am used to seeing deep-fried bugs here so they don’t freak me out…South Africa is home to some of the world’s most unusual holiday food fare. Every December locals feast on a seasonal delicacy– the deep-fried caterpillars of Emperor Moths! They really are very pretty caterpillars… Deep fried…Would you eat them ????

The hunt is on for the best Christmas Jumper…

box-christmas jumper -christmas-balls-714696 (1)

To be in with a chance of winning…Please send in your photos…

Christmas Cheer this week is in the guise of my homemade Irish Cream Recipe

Home made Baileys

Irish Cream:

Ingredients:

  • 10 oz Irish Whiskey
  • 1/2 pt whipping cream
  • 1 can condensed milk…
  • 2 eggs.
  • 11/2 tbsp Chocolate syrup.
  • 1/2 tbsp each  Vanilla Extract, Coconut Extract, and Chocolate Extract.

Let’s Brew!

Blend all ingredients together and refrigerate.

Serve cold and or over Ice.

Now isn’t that easy? and …you can get about 4 batches from one bottle of  Irish Whiskey so by my reckoning that’s a real saving and lots of Irish Cream which we tested alongside Bailey’s and it was very close…yay……

Thank you for reading this weeks Christmas Traditions and Treats I do hope you have enjoyed it if so please let me know in comments I love to hear from you…xxx

About Carol Taylor:

Enjoying life in The Land Of Smiles I am having so much fun researching, finding new, authentic recipes both Thai and International to share with you. New recipes gleaned from those who I have met on my travels or are just passing through and stopped for a while. I hope you enjoy them.

I love shopping at the local markets, finding fresh, natural ingredients, new strange fruits and vegetable ones I have never seen or cooked with. I am generally the only European person and attract much attention and I love to try what I am offered and when I smile and say Aroy or Saab as it is here in the north I am met with much smiling.

Some of my recipes may not be in line with traditional ingredients and methods of cooking but are recipes I know and have become to love and maybe if you dare to try you will too. You will always get more than just a recipe from me as I love to research and find out what other properties the ingredients I use contain to improve our health and wellbeing.

Exciting for me hence the title of my blog, Retired No One Told Me! I am having a wonderful ride and don’t want to get off, so if you wish to follow me on my adventures, then welcome! I hope you enjoy the ride also and if it encourages you to take a step into the unknown or untried, you know you want to…….Then, I will be happy!

Carol is a contributor to the Phuket Island Writers Anthology: https://www.amazon.com/Phuket-Island-Writers-Anthology-Stories-ebook/dp/B00RU5IYNS

Connect to Carol

Blog: https://blondieaka.wordpress.com/
Twitterhttps://twitter.com/TheRealCarolT
Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/carol.taylor.1422

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/caroltaylor56/pins/

Thank you once again for reading this post I hope you all have a great weekend xx