Monday, December 28, 2009

Holiday Traditions

Family holiday traditions are curious things. They are simultaneously fluid and static. For many, the failure to follow a tradition makes the holiday feel incomplete.

In my family, we don't have too many food-based traditions. Christmas dinner might be turkey, ham, goose, or venison with mashed white potatoes, mashed sweet potatoes, a vegetable, and a salad. Dessert is pumpkin pie with whipped cream (or Cool Whip if you can't do dairy). I'm not saying my family comes up short -- our biggest tradition is exchanging gifts in the light of the Christmas tree on Christmas Eve -- just that our traditions don't focus on food.

In my partner's family, there are a larger number of required foods for the holiday: boiled custard, cut-out cookies (like a sugar cookie, but smoother), turkey, and country ham. There is always country ham.

What food traditions do your families have around the winter holidays?

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