Srecan Bozic or Merry Christmas 365-8

Today is Serbian Orthodox Christmas. If you are Greek or Russian or any other Orthodox Christian, today Christmas! Best wishes to you all!!

This is a popular picture circulating around my Serbian community on Facebook, wishing all a marvelous holiday.

Virtual Serbian Christmas Card

Here people are greeted with  the saying Christ is born or Hristos se rodi (Cyrillic spelling Христос се роди).

Phones were buzzing all morning with friends and family calling each other exclaiming Hristos Se Rodi!

The car seat view on the way to Grandma’s

Today was a family day. The way Christmas should be. Mama and Papa played with the baby. The munchkin learned how to pet the kitty. carefully.

Loving on Tomo

Auntie and Papa vied for the little one’s attentions while we all waited for the yummy food to finish cooking. It was worth the wait, I assure you.

Deda and Tetka with our little wiggle worm.

Deda was in hog heaven as the Milster played happily in his lap. It didn’t last long enough, she always wants the mommy so soon! I did get quite a nice break today. Longer than normal, so I got to help in the kitchen. I even had enough time to make the cabbage salad and later I washed the dishes, a welcome break from the little love.

There is always salad to start, fresh bread, and gibanica. YUM!

We had many of the same salads from yesterday with the addition of the cabbage. There was soup, then Rimfleish. This is a German dish normally served with beef, but our family eats it with Chicken primarily.  Boiled carrots and potatoes accompany this dish. As always it was served with gibanica, a filo dough with egg and cheese pastry. Super yummy. I love making it!

Rimfleish made from the bad rooster (One of my stock fotos) forgot to take a pic today

Next there was smoked meats from the turkey and pig we just killed. Plus meatballs. After all that there was the turkey. But, I didn’t have any room left, believe it or not. 😉

Half the Turkey is still a huge!

The special bread was cut after yesterday’s pick and pull tradition. Almost none is left. Most families put a coin in the bread for a lucky person to find. I can imagine as a child that would be thrilling! Who am I kidding, I would be tickled to death now to get a coin in my bread.

Mama out did herself again. We were all stuffed to bits at the end of dinner. I didn’t even have room for the sour cherry desert. I will have some later… I brought it home with me!

As usual, we all had some coffee. Serbian style. so it was Turkish. 🙂

Turkish coffee on a tray. That’s just how we roll.

After dinner it was back to relaxing with the family. What and excellent day!

*Regretfully, only the only food picture from today was the one with the broken bread and the turkey, I was too busy eating to take pics!



Christmas Eve Dinner~ Serbian style 365-7

Serbian Christmas eve Dinner

I regret that my pics are grainy and poorly done, but at least you get the idea.  Having a child, and carrying anything but my phone along with all her gear is just too much to ask at the moment. So the pics will continue to be poor quality til I have a free hand or more room for the good camera.

Last night was our yummy Christmas eve Dinner. Serbian all the way! Papa had gone out earlier to get our Christmas tree. Not an evergreen. Part of it is on the table embellished with sprigs of wheat in a ceramic vase.

Serbian Christmas Tree

A candle is lit, pieces of the same tree are on the candles plate. Some of the wood is burned in the fire, but a sprig will be kept somewhere around the home for good luck as well.

There is so much done here for luck. But the same word means happiness. So, who is to say if it is or luck, or if it is for happiness. ?

Another tradition/superstition is to leave all the dishes on the table after dinner til the next morning. If you are OCD like mama, that is Midnight. Because that is “morning” and she can’t stand a mess. 🙂 But she waits until midnight to clean. Whatever…. I just go along with it all. It is fun to learn it all, but to be honest. I am not sure how much I will incorporate in my home.

I love the presentation, and most of the food. But the fasting part. eating fish is not for me. I have never liked fish. Sea fish, straight off the boat is about all I can stomach. No river fish. My amazing cook of a husband tries, again and again. but I really don’t like it and it is not for lack of trying.

Our Christmas table as you saw above is loaded with food. Some of the foods have meanings or are placed there for good luck/happiness.

Good luck for the new year.

The beans in the pan are just part of the fasting meal. No animal products and all that jazz. I don’t follow this. If I ate all this fasting food, I would need an enema! TMI but true.

The fruits in the bowl and the walnuts that are hidden under the metal cracker are symbols for a fruitful new year. Another thing done for good luck.

At the very front of the picture is a cup made of dough. Later, wine will be poured inside and it will be taken to our cherry fields for good luck for a prosperous year.

I think a lot of these traditions are left over from the Turkish dominion over Serbia, because it all seems remarkable similar to Asian traditions. or maybe it is because the  trade route from east to west ran through here and still does. Who knows?

Pickled veggies are part of the fasting foods mama sets out. I am not fond of pickled foods, only dill pickles to be honest. But, all this food makes a lovely presentation.

There is a yummy shredded carrot salad and dried peppers stuffed with rice. There are sautéed mushrooms with onions, a bean dish like custard called “bob”, and fermented cabbage sprinkled with paprika. Yep, that cabbage is exactly the same as Kim chi in Korea. Lots of Asian similarities!  Heck, We even take our shoes off at the door here. no joke.

Baked pumpkin and a Serbian (dry) baklava were the deserts, Yummy. The baklava… is not sopping with syrup, but dry and sweet. It’s basic contents are filo dough, sugar,  oil, and ground walnuts. To be honest, it reminded me of a pecan pie. love it!

Last but not least is the home-made bread steeped with meaning.

Christmas Bread

Mama makes this bread every year. Her decorations, remain the same. But this year there are two new little symbols on the cake. One is for our little munchkin and one is for the new little cat, Jerry.

The long with lines on the bread are a symbol of our orchards. The center is a  round table with our family sitting at it. there are little characters for all our animals, our tractor, house, and car. There are other things I don’t recall the meaning of and finally a snake. Aha, a snake for protection. Riddle me that one!

One of the most interesting traditions concerning this bread is, you don’t cut it! You break pieces of it off with your hand and eat it. Total like. I am all about finger food!

As in a fairy tale Christmas Eve, it was snowing last night. This morning here in town, only a light dusting covers the cars. I think there maybe more snow for this magical First Orthodox Christmas for our munchkin in the village. Merry Orthodox Christmas Everyone!