Its finally here!! One of the most anticipated holidays of the year. Besides your birthday, Christmas is usually the most popular holiday for many reasons. Lots of food, presents, traditions and not to mention much needed and cherished family time.
Last year I was not able to spend Christmas with my parents, sisters and cousins. It was the second time I spent it away from them and I was pretty bummed out. We always have loads of fun because there is always so many of us and we play games, tell stories and dance!
When I moved out of state I knew the holidays were going to be the hardest part. Fortunately we were able to drive back home for thanksgiving. Its about a ten hour drive and we have a great dane that we need to always find a dog sitter for, so its not something we can do all the time.
We had originally planned to spend xmas with my mother-in-law in her apartment since it was going to be just us three. So we didn’t need much space. After our trip to CA for thanksgiving my parents had told me they were going to try to come to UT for xmas but didn’t think it was very likely. Then my sister-in-law also said she might come after we told her we would be at her moms place.
Once we got back from UT both families confirmed they would be coming and one of aunts also texted me telling me they would be coming too! I was super excited! We were not able to change the venue due to some family members being very much allergic to dogs and my dog is all over the house so it would not be ideal for them to be around. So now my sweet mother-in-law is having a full house and I’m kind of interested to see how 18 people are going to fit in her small apartment. I hope we don’t break the floor! It sounds like it would be a funny story to tell but Id rather leave it as a joke. ;P
In our families, and most latino families we our dinner and celebrations on the 24th. The 25th is usually a recoup day and we have left overs and go do a recreational activity (at least the Aragon family). Growing up we’d almost always go to the mountains and see the snow. In CA that’s probably the only place you’ll ever see snow, and mountain snow there is pretty much very fine and crunchy ice.
Most families have their own traditional dinner they eat at xmas. For example in the Mexican culture it very common to eat tamales, but in my family my mom always makes pierna (leg). It a whole pork leg and i have no idea what she seasons it with but its heavenly. We also make frijoles charros (beans, pork rinds, chorizo, and other deliciousness) and ponche (hot fruity drink), along with other sides.
My husbands family is from Dominican Republic and they also have their own version of tamales called ‘pastel en hola’ which is also in the same form as a tamale BUT it is not the same. Pastel en hola is made with plantains as the ‘masa’ and filled with ground beef, and they eat it with ketchup and mayo. If you’re not used to it it might taste a little strange at first, especially is youre used to tamales. They are good though, once you eat one and get used to it its very yummy!
Like I had mentioned before though, each family has their own food. His family grew up having pollo relleno, which is a deboned chicken stuffed with ham, cheese, and veggies. As well as moro con guandules, which is a type of rice. (you can google it).
So im sure youre wondering, if both families are going to be together this year does that mean we get to eat both dinners? The answer is; YES MA’AM!!
So if you guys don’t hear from me for a while, its probably because Im in a food coma.
What are some must haves at your family xmas dinner??