Archive for December, 2013

Here is a great recipe which I thought would be a great addition to a new year’s dinner. With all the little appetizers and salads that we would like to make, here is an easy and hearty holiday treat that you’ll be sure to love!

potato pudding

Overnight Potato Pudding

5lbs potatoes peeled

1 large onion

8 large eggs

1 cup oil

½ cup boiling water

1 ½ TBSP salt

1/8 tsp pepper

overnight potato pudding


  1. Preheat oven to 350F
  2. Grate potatoes and onion in food processor. Mix in eggs, oil, and boiling water. Season with salt and pepper
  3. Transfer to a 9 x 13 pan. Bake for 2 hrs uncovered. After 2 hrs cover tightly with 3 layers of aluminum foil. Place another pan halfway filled with cold water on lower rack directly underneath potato pudding pan. Lower oven temperature to 220F and bake 8hrs or overnight. Serves 8-10.

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For many people preparing for the Christmas Holiday started long ago. The shopping, the baking, and most of the cooking are all done and even the presents wrapped and ready to go. For others it starts now right before the Holiday. We searched for some easy to do projects that will make your house glow with the Christmas Spirit and no one will know that it was done in no time!

Candy Cane Vase

After spreading out a nice table cloth on your table you like to add some accessories. Here is a super easy festive DIY candy cane vase from Better Homes and Gardens. The nice thing about it is that you can use a plain vase you have lying around the house,  an empty pickle jar, perhaps an empty can from cooking, or empty baby jars if you would like to make mini vases. You can make one big vase for the center of the table or a few little ones. Use a rubber band to hold the candy canes in place and then tie a pretty bow to cover it up! Here is the link for the candy cane vases:  http://www.stylisheve.com/stylish-eve-diy-holiday-edition-presents-candy-cane-vases/

In keeping with the candy cane theme, roll up your pretty cloth napkins and tie with some ribbon. Then stick in a candy cane. Your table will look pretty and your candy cane vase will be intact from people wanting to take some candy from it!

Christmas Napkin Rings

Decorate your home with a wreaths made out of green clothespins. Clip onto some round red wire, tie it with red ribbon and hang up it up. Add some pretty family photos or Christmas cards. If there are children in the home they can draw some hand prints and can paint them or if you don’t want a mess have them draw hands on green cardboard and then cut them out. Paste onto something round (maybe a paper plate) and they’ll be delighted with their homemade wreath masterpiece.


Hopefully these quick and pretty ideas will free up some time so you can whip up some cookies and can be more relaxed when the holiday arrives.

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Celebrating Christmas around the World

People from all over the world have their own customs and traditions, and as we increasingly live in a socially mobile world we begin to share festivities between ourselves and pick up new customs from others. In fact, people around the world from a variety of religions – not just Christians – come together to celebrate Christmas with friends and family.

Unlike in the USA and the UK,  Christmas celebrations in Poland tend not to start until on Christmas Eve (after the first star has been spotted) but they then go on to celebrate longer, generally until February 2nd. As Poland is primarily a Catholic country they tend to abstain from frivolity such as singing and dancing during Advent in the lead up to Christmas. Instead they like to party in the weeks afterwards. They make an exception for St Nicholas Day on December 6th when the children receive presents.

Holly Glow Tablecloth

The decoration of house and table is taken very seriously in Poland. Traditionally the table is spread with straw to represent the manger. This is then followed by a snow white tablecloth that represents Mary’s veil and Jesus’ swaddling cloth. You can recreate Poland’s traditions yourself by laying fresh spruce on a plate of your finest china, and placing the plate on a white tablecloth or white cloth napkin. The Snowman  Family a white tablecloth and is particularly cute and ideal for a family get together. Holly Glow Tablecloth is a sophisticated way to dress up the table. The table should then be decorated using lights, candles, flowers, apples, nuts, candies or home blown glass or crystal so that everything sparkles and shines.

Similar traditions exist throughout Eastern Europe. Color and warmth and good food and drink are what are required for a spectacular feast. The combination of food varies quite dramatically however. The Czech people eat fried carp and potato salad, and bake a splendid array of Christmas biscuits. Their houses must smell heavenly!

Christmas Cookies

There is nothing to prevent you from offering your own feast on a richly seasonal tablecloth to match the flavor of the foods you’re serving. For example, if you were partaking in a Caribbean feast where they serve Sorrel punch, you might not want a white tablecloth at all. Sorrel punch is made from hibiscus flowers mixed with cloves and cinnamon and is steeped overnight in water, resulting in a bright red liquid that is delicious served with rum. But not something you want to spill on your best tablecloth!

Solid Color Elegant table cloths may prove useful as an under cloth for your Christmas table display. Choose something in Holiday colors such as red or burgundy. Christmas tablecloths don’t have to be white after all. Alternatively place a Christmas table topper on top of the table cloth fro a dazzling effect. Try Christmas Glisten table runners to dress up the table.

Glisten Christmas Table Runners

A glamorous under tablecloth and Christmas topper combination is perfect for anyone celebrating with a huge feast, the likes of which you can experience in France, Italy and Finland. In France Christmas is celebrated with a long dinner known as a réveillon (from réveil meaning waking because you have to stay awake a long time!). The French serve umpteen dishes including goose, turkey, foie gras, oysters, smoked salmon, duck and lobster. In some parts of France, 13 desserts are also served to represent Jesus and his disciples.

In Finland, celebrants are offered a Christmas food board that will include Christmas ham served with fresh bread and mustard, fish (usually gravlax), casseroles, potatoes and vegetables. In Italy, traditional Christmas fare will include the offer of seven fish dishes. The dishes vary according to what is available and personal preference but can include eels, clams, salt cod and of course calamari.

Whether you will be incorporating some new Holiday recipes this Christmas, or keeping with your traditional ones, a Christmas tablecloth will delight you and fulfill your needs. Remember that Christmas traditions are always evolving and so a Christmas feast should relate only to you and your loved ones. Serve up your favorite foods and the finest drink you can afford and enjoy your holiday.

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