Yes, you guessed it, this is going to be an article starring me, Rupert. As the holiday season approaches, I decided to take the initiative to collect all the Christmas articles of our group. In this Christmas article, then, we will remember the Christmas articles we wrote last year, until our new festive articles are released.
So, last year, we launched our festive articles with the Dreaming of a white Christmas… with a white chef’s hat and Christmas cookies! In this article we talked about the benefits of having children participate in cooking and pastry activities at home and at school. We also gave a gift to our little friends, the printable pattern to make a chef’s hat with their parents. And by the way, we researched the story of the white chef’s hat, which comes from France. We emphasized that cooking and confectionery when done in company is quality time for adults with children and for adults with each other. Finally, we gave our recipe for buttery Christmas cookies and showed how we can decorate them with colored icing.
In the second Christmas article we sent our cookies to Argentina to become alfajores and we named it Our Christmas cookie went to Argentina to become alfajores! Alfajores are butter sandwich cookies filled with dulce de leche, a caramel spread. We, wanting to highlight an innovative product, the honey cream that we found at the Greek Honey and Bee Products Festival 2019, made sandwich cookies with honey cream filling. We did not miss looking for the history and variations of alfajores and we learned that it is a Christmas tradition for housewives to make alfajores with their family recipe.
The closer Christmas got, the more urgent the need to make our own melomakarona became. So George and Eliza entered the kitchen and made the house smell like cloves, cinnamon and orange, making melomakarona with extra virgin olive oil and syrup with quality pine-heather honey. In our article Melomakarona… Greek sweet treats for Christmas! we emphasized that melomakarona are healthier than kourabiedes (the other Christmas treats we make in Greece), and we studied their history, which begins in Ancient Greece! Finally we found some traditional and modern variations and of course we gave our recipe for melomakarona crispy from the outside and syrupy to the center.
Christmas cake… It’s Christmas time! was called our next festive article. We started with a sweet Christmas fairy tale starring Walnut, a walnut who had a dream to get in the Christmas cake. Then we learned a lot about the British Christmas cake and found various festive sweets from other countries of the world. We closed the article with a recipe for homemade spice cake topped with sweet-spicy strawberry jam with mint, pepper and reduced sugar. It turned out impressive and delicious!
We named our next article Chestnuts roasted in the fireplace for a festive yule log! and we did just that. We baked chestnuts in the fireplace and made a Christmas yule log with chestnut cream covered with an original chocolate ganache with extra virgin olive oil. And because we always accompany the enjoyment with knowledge we searched for the history of the Christmas yule log, and we learned the northern European tradition of the large trunk (yule log) for the fireplace from which the Christmas yule log got its name.
The last article with which we said goodbye to last year, the article Greek Vasilopita made by a third generation Smyrnian, starred our friend Barbara, who is indeed a third generation Smyrnian. Varvara welcomed us to her house, treated us to traditional sweets and made us a vasilopita with the traditional recipe that she inherited from her great-grandmother. We had a very interesting discussion, with Varvara telling us about her experiences with Smyrnian housewives. And because we made vasilopita, we read the true story of Agios Vasilios (the Orthodox Santa Claus) whose miracle established the hiding of a coin in the vasilopita.
And that’s how our last year’s Christmas section ended … New festive articles are coming soon, so stay tuned!
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