Living abroad has many perks but at this time of year its definitely a hard time to be away. Luckily Ireland isn’t too far and Ryanair flights have meant there’s less stress about the cost of getting there. Not everyone has it this easy though, my boyfriend hasn’t been able to get back to Brazil for the past three years. However in this time he has got to experience Christmas in Ireland and France and luckily for him he prefers a cold Christmas (something not possible in the summer heat of Brazil this time of year) . This gave me the idea to do a comparison of the celebrations in all three countries, I have the expert with me after all! This year is also the second December I’ve spent in France and I have definitely noticed some differences in the way the holiday is celebrated.
Ireland: Mince pies and brandy butter are easily one of the best things in the lead up to Christmas. While french boulangeries are stacked high with delicious bread and croissants they lack this Christmas essential. I have come across one box of mince pies at a British themed stall in the Christmas market…A box? No thank you, I like mine freshly baked and warmed in the oven.
France: I have spent a lot of time in provence and am tempted this year to recreate their traditional after Christmas dinner desert. We’ll it’s more than one, it’s 13. Yes 13 deserts! That is absolute heaven to me. Apparently each one is to represent the 12 apostles and Jesus. This is one French tradition I can see myself embracing.
Brazil: One of the side dishes of a Brazilian Christmas dinner is called Fios de Ovos (Angel Hair). It’s a dish I have never quite understood but am eager to try! It’s made of eggs boiled in a sweet syrup, and ends up as sort of a spaghetti like texture. It’s then formed into a sort of nest and a cherry is placed on top. It’s usually paired with ham because it creates a sweet and salty contrast. This sounds strange but apparently it’s delicious, though hard to make!
That’s it for part one of my Christmas contrast. Looking forward to writing part two, I love hearing about Brazilian traditions it so exotic! Hope you enjoy reading about them too.
Until next time, happy Saturday!