It was another international Christmas Eve for our family recognizing the 14th country or region since we started this wacky tradition. This year it was Canada.
With our three adult children married and with our now having five grandchildren, we are flexible with our dates. As we have done for the past couple of years, we pretended Christmas Eve was Dec. 26th and Christmas Day the 27th.
It was our 15th time to do it, but a few years ago, for our tenth year, we had a "festival of nations" in which we celebrated the nine previous countries. So, this was our 14th country.
Here is the rundown, going back to our first year, 2008:
2008 -- Mexico
2009 -- Italy
2010 -- Greece
2011 -- Asian
2012 -- France
2013 -- Caribbean
2014 -- Germany
2015 -- England
2016 -- Brazil
2017 -- Festival of Nations
2018 -- India
2019 -- Cuba
2020 -- Australia
2021 -- Ireland
2022 -- Canada
Canada was great. We started with poutine, which Wife said was the recipe that popped up most often when she searched for native Canada dishes. It's French fries topped with cheese curds and gravy and although I politely refused, I pulled out some of the fries, which we made ourselves, and they were delicious.
As usual, we started with appetizers and drinks in the entry hall. This included the poutine, Labatt Blue beer and a signature drink Wife prepared.
For the main meal in the dining room (see below), we had lobster rolls, a mixed vegetable dish called hodgepodge, Canadian baked beans and a pita sandwich for which Wife made an intricate meat mixture. There were a couple of delicious desserts.
Dress was heavy toward the "Canadian tuxedo," which is denim on bottom and top. And of course, the dining room was decorated in a Canadian theme.
It was another great time, and we'll soon start thinking about next year.
What a fun tradition. The older I get, the more I am treasuring the traditions that have grown in my family. Hope you had a wonderful holiday season.
I am so bummed that I missed my chance to meet you when I was in Nashville. Somehow I got the wrong notion that you were from Kentucky. Next time!
My only suggestion would have been to try the french fry with gravy and a cheese curd on top. It really is better than it looks or sounds.
Sounds like a great time was had. I do think you should revisit "Asia" and actually pick a country in the region to explore as they each have vastly different cuisines.
It all looks and sounds great, Bob! In my pre-plant based days, I would definitely have tried the poutine!
I agree with Ed. You should revisit Asia and divide it out. Korea, China, Japan, Vietnam. I bet if you wanted to do the Philippines, he and his wife couple provide an entire menu!!
You haven't "been" to South America. I know there are some good dishes from Peru and Brazil.
*could* (I have no idea where *couple* came from. 🙄
Dadgumit, Bob. I promise I read through your list twice and did not see Brazil either time! Anyway, there's still Peru.
Good suggestions, everyone, especially being more specific about Asian countries. Hopefully there are years to come and we can incorporate those. We did Brazil in 2016, but you’re right, we should consider other South American countries.
I love it. I feel like I struggle to come up with a solid idea for Christmas dinner and seem to always default to pasta dishes in recent years. I wonder if this idea would interest my grown kids. BTW, I'm curious... I'm now getting your Substack articles via email. I noticed in the e-mail that there is an option to hear the article read. I thought that was interesting, and wondered if it is read by you. If so, that might just motivate me to create a Substack account.
Haha Becki, that is not me reading and didn’t even know listening was an option! I am
still learning about Substack. I have found it to be very easy to use and navigate through, and for all I know, a writer might be able to record his/her work (but I don’t know). Thank you for reading here and for subscribing to my Substack newsletter! 😃
The Mountie poster makes it real! I have tried to recall what I've eaten in Canada that's different than the US... Tim Horton's donuts and coffee? Canadian Club or Yukon Jack liquor? I have had pirogies in Canada, but also in Pittsburgh and Detroit.
Nonetheless, I really like this idea of different countries cuisine for dinner.
I forgot all about Tim Horton's! I'm sure we could have gotten some of their coffee cups for a price!
I've been thinking about this, Bob. Have you ever considered the idea of going back in time and having a medieval feast or a Roman feast?
Although I do love the Kelly's idea! I'd suggest a Victorian Christmas. That would be fun.
Will certainly keep those ideas in mind should we decide to venture beyond countries.
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