Feasts and Festivals
In Just Let Them Love You, Eden develops a radio show that joins Jewish traditional menus with the celebration of historic festivals. Basically- an excuse for a good party. Researching traditional middle-eastern meals in order to implement them into the books was quite an education. Jewish and Arab dishes are featured in the first book. American and Brazilian fare are being sprinkled into the following two. Although spices and ingredients differ between cultures and continents, one thing remains consistent. Tradition and food bring people together, whether your turkey is stuffed with a spicy sausage pasta like my Italian friends, or chestnuts, pine nuts and olives like my Israeli friends.
Taking our heritage of origin and mixing it with the culture into which we have assimilated, provides an endless fusion of creativity. I certainly didn't grow up eating feta cheese and hummus or lentil stew and curry like I do now. Pot roast, mashed potatoes, green beans and apple sauce were standard Dutch fare.
With the holidays quickly approaching, this got me to thinking about heritage and food. Our family has added some must-haves to the holidays throughout the years. Watching Macy's Christmas parade and shooting clay pigeons for the tradition. Corn pudding, sweet potato casserole, turkey with all the trimmings and apple and pumpkin pie are usually prepared for the food. A newer addition of chocolate covered peanut butter balls has been invited to participate in the Thanksgiving Day meal. The peanut butter balls were such a hit at Christmas that the prep moved up on the calendar.
Because of the calorie count, not to mention the sick feeling after eating several in a row, I've limited myself to making these only once a year! In case I've whet your appetite, see attached recipe. I don't crush the cereal and I typically triple the batch. They freeze great- another way to make them last until the holidays!
Happy Thanksgiving everyone!