I realize that Christmas was almost two weeks ago, but I have a little Christmas story anyway. A few years back, we started a new Christmas tradition at Gracewood Cottage. After putting together a traditional Thanksgiving dinner cooked at home, we decided to order a Sheik’s Platter from The Holy Land Deli and Bakery, one of our favorite restaurants here in the Twin Cities. We figured that it was the height of appropriateness to celebrate the birth of Jesus by eating food from land if His birth.
A week or so before Christmas my mom and I were visiting with some locals who were (as most people around here are) of Swedish descent. The conversation invariably turned to the topic of preparations for a traditional Swedish Christmas dinner. There was talk of meatballs, lefsa, lutefisk, and bread pudding. Someone turned to my mom and asked her what traditional food she was preparing for Christmas dinner.
When she responded that her Christmas dinner would be kebabs and rice from a local Middle Eastern bakery, the horrified look on their faces was the same as it would have been if she had jumped onto the table and started doing The Hokey-pokey!
Never mind. We had a fantastic Middle Eastern Christmas feast!