2014 will be the Christmas with the fewest family members around the table on 24th ever since my brothers and I got married and formed our families. We will be only 7: Mother, my husband, Pierre, my sons Jacques (now separated from his wife) and Christophe, and his wife, Camila and my brother, Edward (kids spending Christmas with their mother). My eldest son Jean Marc, his wife and their little daughter will be in Monterey, Mexico with my daughter in law’s family; my brother Mark is with his wife and girls (and their beaus) in Hawaii and my other brother, Jorge, and his family (Viktor and Alexander only – Tesia is in The Hague) will only be with us for lunch on 25th. They usually spend the 24th at home with my sister-in-law’s father. However, while quantities differ, preparations remain the same.
On 24th we celebrate Wigilia. Even though we live in Brazil, mother has always tried to make it as traditionally Polish as possible so we abstain from eating meat on this day and we share the opłatek (Christmas wafer) before we sit for diner. I am carrying on the tradition. The menu this year will differ just a bit from the other years as we won’t have barszcz (betroot soup) – just mother and I eat it so we did not want to go into the trouble. But for the entrée we’ll have herring with rye bread/butter and a glass of Polish vodka. Then mushroom patties and a number of salads, fish and shrimps. For dessert I have already made a fruit compote and biscuits.
On 25th, I am preparing a stuffed turkey with chestnuts and an apple purée. My brother Jorge is bringing the mandioquinha purée and entrées. The sweet and sour pears, a mango and an onion chutney just need to be put in the bowls. For dessert we’ll have biscuits and ice-cream(if my son Christophe does not forget to bring it).
The chutney and pears were prepared at the countryside two weeks ago, the biscuits last weekend and today, the fruit compote and the mushroom stuffing for the patties. I also bought and cooked the shrimps. So tomorrow there’s just the fish and the sauces left + the table decoration. Ouf!
Unfortunately no Santa Claus because our little granddaughters will not be with us. It is a strange Christmas this year!