My ultimate Christmas
Yay CHRISTMAS! I’ve always celebrated Christmas and enjoy it every year. When I was a kid, my favorite thing was going to school in my pajamas for the annual Christmas breakfast. It was also always so much fun to decorate our tree with Christmas balls and homemade Christmas cookies. For me, it always felt like a special time of year. My parents thought so too. They considered it to be the perfect moment to warmly reflect on everything we had and to enjoy sharing moments and eating together… But mostly just being together. We always had plenty of family over to visit, which gave rise to lively discussions that I used to (and still do) love to participate in and listen to.
There were, of course, other things that my parents didn’t enjoy quite as much. The Christmas tree, for one. We always had one, but it was an organic, live one that we always planted back in the ground afterward. My mother, in particular, has never been in favor of cutting down perfectly good, living trees. “Can’t we just light a bunch of candles instead?” she’d always say. And she might have a point. But, to me, there’s nothing better than the smell of a Christmas tree in the house. Lovely!
In addition to the Christmas tree, there was always one other issue that was up for discussion in the Kroes household: the main course. My mother doesn’t eat meat and felt that Christmas dinner could just as well be vegetarian. My father, on the other hand, loved meat and always wanted to see a meat dish on the table at Christmas. So, as a compromise, we stayed away from the supermarket and bought hare, goose or duck from the local hunter. Fair enough!
Even now, as an adult, I go back and forth every year on the issue of whether or not to get a Christmas tree and on whether or not I should make a vegetarian Christmas dinner (thanks, mom and dad!). This year, I’m not sure where I’ll be spending Christmas… Could be New York, Amsterdam or Friesland. So, I don’t think I’ll be getting a tree (maybe I can convince my mom to get one?). But sharing an elaborate meal with family and friends is definitely on the agenda, and I’ve decided to go for a meatless Christmas dinner this year. This doesn’t mean there won’t be meat on the table. My boyfriend and many of my family members still eat meat, but I’m going to ensure that a whole array of plant-based and vegetarian dishes are on the table too. I’ve tested and tasted a few dishes already and here’s an idea of what my dinner will look like (see photo)! Sooo yum!!
Over the next two weeks, I’ll be posting lots and lots of new recipes online (like these lemon snow bliss balls) to keep you inspired for a delicious Christmas ; ). So keep a close eye on my blog for all the new recipes.
Wishing you a happy holiday season!
Love from New York,
My Christmas tips:
- Adopt a Christmas tree or buy a live tree that you can plant in the ground again so that it can be ‘re-used’ up to five times.
- Keep the wrapping paper that’s still in good shape and use it next year. Or use old newspaper to wrap your presents.
- Eat plant-based as much as possible. It’s better for the environment. Can’t do without meat? Make sure it’s organic and locally raised.
- Set the table with name plates, decorate it with lots of candles and mini lights, tie sprigs of dried herbs to rolled napkins using string and sprinkle (homemade) confetti over the set table.
- Don’t count calories.
- Make a Christmas playlist.
- Avoid food waste: eat the leftovers the next day (the best!) ; )
- Live in the moment, enjoy!
- For more Christmas recipes, take a look at my book, The Party Edition.