December Food Facts

It is that time of year! I couldn’t let this month pass without sharing some awesome December food facts. This week’s episode is going to spread some seriously interesting knowledge you can share under the mistletoe. Here we go!

International December Food Facts

Happy holidays! Even if you are in a place where Christmas isn’t a big deal, the December month still brings tradition and festivities. Here are some traditional holiday foods from around the world.

  • This is one I can really get behind. I love fried chicken. It is seriously one of my favorite foods. In the 1970s, KFC put together a brilliant marketing campaign in Japan. They introduced a holiday bucket and marketed it as a holiday treat, something you should do on Christmas. Japan didn’t have many Christmas traditions, and this one was quickly embraced. Good job KFC!
  • In Lithuania they have a popular Christmas feast that has been adapted from a pagan tradition. Originally the feast featured 9 dishes. However, today it features 12, one for each apostle. This was a common practice when the Catholic Church snatched up local holiday traditions. The feast is called Kucios and no meat, dairy or hot food is part of it. There is a heavy focus on vegetable dishes and fish dishes.
  • Israel enjoys Latkes during the Hanukah season. Latkes are small, fried potato pancakes.
  • Germany is the source of many Christmas traditions. However, one that is very well known is the Christmas goose. This dates back to the Middle Ages. It is often stuffed with fruit, like apples and prunes. Then it is served with gravy, potatoes and cabbage.

Some More International Favorites

  • In Costa Rica, the southwestern United States, Central America and many other latin countries, tamales are a big deal this time of year. They are often stuffed with various meats or veggies and wrapped in a corn husk or banana leaf before being steamed to perfection.
  • Of course, we can’t forget England! They brought us pudding. This isn’t the smooth chocolate pudding we know and love in the states. In England, pudding is made of fruit, spices, suet and other ingredients.
  • Bulgaria they eat Kolivo. This is a boiled wheat dish with walnuts. However, it can have many other variations as well. It might include honey, rice, beans and other spices.
  • Bacalao is big in Mexico. This is a salt cod dish that is common in many Catholic countries during the holidays. It contains ancho chile tomato and other veggies.
  • Sweden has saffron buns. The oldest daughter is tasked with making these amazing buns. They are yellow from the saffron and have a sweet taste.
  • Now we are getting to the meat. In the Philippines a roast pig is a common holiday dish. Traditionally, the Christmas season is long in the Philippines. Roast pig is a big part of the celebration and tradition.

Interesting December Fun Facts!

To wrap up the fact train, I thought I’d go through some interesting holiday food facts. Some of these are still blowing my mind!

  • Turkey is a big deal at Christmas. Before turkey was the hip holiday food, pig’s head and mustard was all the craze during the holidays. Henry VIII had turkey for Christmas and it became the new holiday sensation.
  • If you are stuck waiting for Christmas dinner to be finished, and you are sick of spouting off December food facts, you can start nibbling on the Christmas tree. Many parts of the tree are edible. The pine needles are even a good source of vitamin C.
  • I have a feeling you’re going to get many fruit cake facts in this episode. Originally, fruit cake was intended to last all year. The high moisture, and alcohol content, will make sure these cakes last a long, long time.
  • Finally, it costs $188, 906,668.97 each year to feed Santa cookies and milk, and to feed his reindeer carrots. That’s a staggering amount of money.

A lot of Christmas traditions date back many centuries. They have a long and fascinating history. Furthermore, many families have adopted these traditions and put their own unique spin on them. How do you celebrate Christmas? What blend of traditions does your family embrace?

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December Food Facts: Happy Holidays From Toasty Kettle
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