Holiday Diary

6 January, 2012

Hello sweeties! How was your week? It’s Friday today, and I’m really excited, cause we’re almost 1 week away from my little Blog’s first anniversary, which gives me great pleasure. I may have a surprise for you, but you will have to stay tuned to find out, so follow this blog any way you like! I would be grateful.

I’m also really excited to finally have the holiday photos ready for you, as I promised on my previous posts! As many of you may already expect, there are mostly food pictures, a few gifts, decorations and some miscellaneous stuff. But those of you who follow my blog for a long time, know how much I love cooking and baking. So let’s get started!

Every year around Christmas, for the last 5-6 years, it has become a tradition for me to make Christmas treats. It may have taken me a little bit longer this year due to the problem I had with my oven, but I finally made them. My close relatives and friends know by now that they should expect a big platter of my homemade melomakarona as a gift. Melomakarona are a traditional dessert of Greek cuisine, prepared primarily during the Christmas holiday season. They can be generally described as “Christmas cookies soaked in syrup of diluted honey (méli in Greek) and then sprinkled with crushed walnuts” (source).

All photos taken by me – Click on them to enlarge

So what you see in this pic:
1. Melomakarona dough ready to be used, 2. Dough, cut into different shapes ready to be put in the oven for baking-I like to make them in shapes because I find it more personalized and cute, 3. An “army” of baked melomakarona (mostly shaped in little cute bears) waiting to be soaked into syprup, 4+5. The syrup in a casserole pot (made of sugar, honey, and water in equal proportions, with added slices of lemon, and cinnamon sticks for flavor) before we pour it onto the melomakarona and while being poured onto them, and 6. Finally the “finished product”: melomakarona took their place on the platter with crushed walnuts, cinnamon and a little bit of clove powder on top. I’m so proud of them, mostly because they get so many compliments every year.

Apart from melomakarona, I usually make some delicious butter cookies, which are a great companion to my afternoon coffee.

Most Greeks along with melomakarona, make kourampiedes (see Greek cuisine), another traditional dessert during Christmas season. But I don’t like them very much and I find them more difficult to make, so I make butter cookies instead of these.

However I did make another dessert, that resembles kourabiedes in a way:

I don’t actually know their name, my father used to make them. It’s kind of a traditional recipe from the island where he was born and raised. I call them coconut fingers, because they are made of desiccated coconut, sweetened condensed milk and they are dipped in powdered sugar, right after they are baked. And well, they look like fingers. I’m not a big fan of coconut, but they taste divine, especially the first days when they are fresh.

And can you believe it? After all these, I even made some cupcakes! I was in a baking mood the whole December. T even called me a little crazy cooking machine. Hehe… Is it bad that I found it sweet? I was on a cooking frenzy last month, I admit it. But he was also benefited from it since I gave him some of these goodies. They are vanilla and chocolate ones, separated in 4 parts, with chocolate and peanut butter frosting on them, and decorated accordingly.

All these happened just a week before Christmas. And I really hope that you’re not yet bored of these pictures and the huge text. I swore not to write so many things, but I couldn’t do it. Please bear with me.

Moving on to Christmas day, and a pic without a single plate of food… That must be a relief for some of you, I guess.

What you see in these pics:
Christmas decoration on the table of our living room: a cute carousel which moves by the flame of the candle, brought to us last year from Austria by my aunt.
Christmas cards, printed on my computer (a great idea I saw on Superficial Girls blog by Carlinn), on which I glued wrapping paper to make them more fancy and thick. I put them on the dessert platters I gave to all my family friends with my homemade goodies.
My nails on Christmas: Painted cardinal red by Nivea nail polish. Those of you, who follow me on Facebook, must have already seen it, that day.
And our stairs at the entrance of our home, leading to the living room/dining room, with lit candles and Christmas lights.

Delicious food on our Christmas table:
Chicken with vegetables, mushrooms, tricolore pasta with cheese, and stuffed chicken.

We had some other stuff but they are not pictured here.

Before I show you the desserts of the day, let me show you the lunch we had with my brother and my sister in law on New Year.

First of all the whole menu, was based on Asian cuisine, as we wanted our main dish to be the one on the top left. Pardon me for not taking a better picture, but my brother had already served us before I grabbed my camera. You have to take my word that it was much better decorated, with Chinese cabbage filled with chopped chicken with mushrooms, sesame, cashews, soya sauce, and other ingredients. I just wanted so much to show it to you.

Clockwise, we have meatballs in hot sauce (chili and stuff), crepes with ham, cheese, parmesan and cream, and various cooked vegetables. To be honest the crepes where made on Christmas day but I forgot to include them in that collage.

Holiday desserts: Ekmek kantaifi (made and Christmas decorated by my aunt on Christmas day), Oreo cake (which I made based on a Devil’s cake recipe-for my Greek readers, you can find it here, if you’re interested), and cheesecake brownies (again from the same blog – unfortunately only for those of you who speak Greek). I also made my “famous” Apple Crumble, but I forgot to take a picture of it. It was long gone, before I remembered.

Photo of my mobile phone on Christmas Day, and New Year’s Eve! I find it really interesting, that the wallpaper change designs in every major date. And that’s probably the only thing I like about this mobile. It was a gift, and my old Nokia friend died, so I use this, but every time I type a text on it I feel like throwing it to a wall. Fun times!

I also got some really nice small gifts before and after Christmas that I thought you might also like to see:

A dear family friend that likes to spoil me all the time got me these amazing Chanel nail polishes, in two of my favourite colors of the season: Quartz and Black Pearl. Plus, she put them in a very cute box. 🙂

Lastly, my dear friend S. who does her internship in Switzerland brought me some delicious Luxemburgerli (mini macarons), from Bachmann. So many flavors to taste. Yum! The one in my hand is champagne and it had glitter on it. Needless to say, that there are only a few left, as they are more of my preference than chocolate desserts.

I actually made the chocolate ones, based on my guests’ preferences. I rarely eat more than one piece of chocolate desserts, I just taste them.

I hope you liked this post, and I didn’t tire you with the huge text. One day I will make smaller posts. Hehe… And to think that I’m not in the best of health while writing it. Nothing serious, just terrible headache for days, that makes my head feel like it’s going to explode! Anyway, if you liked this post, why don’t you like it on Bloglovin?

See you next time, possibly with the New Year’s Eve outfit post, if I ever manage to find a decent pic out of the ones I took that night.

Till then, you can find me on Facebook, to catch more news about me, since I’ve started updating it more often. Or you know, click on one of the following links!

Lookbook / Chicisimo

Feel free to Gossip about it:

32 comments on “Holiday Diary

  1. It’s like having all these dishes in front of me right now. I can even smell them!
    My dear M, you’re a chef! I don’t even think to try and cook all these 🙂
    I wish I had some of these butter cookies right now, since they’re my favorite cookies and some of the oreo cake too. You’ re so lucky you don’t like chocolate… I can live only with chocolate and every time chocolate is the reason for my huge fights with the scale 🙂
    Can’t wait to see your new year’s eve outfit!

    • To be fair I only made the desserts! The main meal was prepared by my mother, and I was just her helper! I really like making desserts, so it was really fun for me! 🙂
      I still have some of the cookies and the oreo cake at home! Wish I could send you some!
      My favourite dessert is ice cream, plain vanilla ice cream. I can eat whole kilos of it.
      Stin pragmatikotita protimw panta ta almira apo ta glika, diladi to kanoniko fai…An kai eimai kaliteri sti zaxaroplastiki, se apla pragmata pros to paron! Distixws kai egw vazw kai evala polla kila mesa stis diakopes, kathws latrevw to fai (eimai tavros sto zwdio an sou leei kati), opote apo deutera ksekiname diaitoula me ti mama na kanoume kai mia apotoxinwsi! 🙂

  2. Oh I want to spend the next new year’s eve there with you, OK? Don’t worry, I’m not inviting myself, but it’s that everything looked so fantastic! I love butter cookies, and I quite know the coconut fingers, which I also love! And melomakarona, I really want to eat them! There’s a shop (well, more than one) in London with Greek desserts, miam miam 🙂 I think I have to go there in some weeks!
    I love the presents, especially the nail polishes! I never wore blue, but I’m thinking of now; I saw how nice they were on you, and other girls are now wearing blue very often on TV, so I am curious to try the color!
    You know I’m a big fan of your manicure, really beautful nails and color – I love red!
    So… when you bake again send me some “miam miam” cookies!
    I’m sure they were all delicious!
    Fiakia polla!!!!!!
    Denise recently posted..Day-by-day liesMy Profile

    • hehe You don’t have to invite yourself, you’re more than welcome to be here with me next year on New Year’s, Christmas, or whatever other holiday or non-(holi)day… You know that! I would be really happy to have you here with me. And if you can do it, you can also come twice a year or more. hehe Not a problem with me. I love having guests! 🙂
      I haven’t tried the nail polishes yet, cause I had others on my mind for the holidays, but I will really soon. The color of the right one, is actually a grey-ish black. It changes in the light. Glittery of course! But you should try blue nail polishes. I didn’t like many colors till I tried them on me. And some of them I came to like after wearing them for some days. I love red too! It’s such a classic! Did you have the chance to try the ones I sent you? I’m asking because I wanted to see if they lasted on your nails longer than your usual ones. Cause they do on mine, as I’ve told you!
      Can I do that? Can I send you some cookies or melomakarona next time I bake? I’ve no idea, if they’ll come fresh and in “one piece”. I would love to send you some to tell me your opinion too! 🙂
      Filakia polla! I’m finally coming by your blog now!

  3. giati mas to kaneis twra auto me ta gluka kai vraduatika phga sto psugeio mou k sta ntoulapia mou k epsaxna gia gluka? (kala dhladh pou eimai sumfiliwmenh me to swma mou :p kai den kollaw se ena glukaki-ena eipa? kanto 2-3).
    dhladh eprepe na valeis mpiskota kai macarons? den mas lupasai? pou tha vrw twra macarons kuriakatika?
    plaka kanw, uperoxo to post sou,
    m aresoun genika ta post tetoiou eidous k perimenw k alla apo sena.
    oso gia ta chanel vernikia ta opoia aneferes k sto comment sou, to quartz to dokimasa k egw alla san xrwma den m ekane kati, exw ena paromoio apo erre due kai epeidh to erre due htan 10 fores pio fthna eipa na mhn parw to quartz kai gia auto k phra to graphite to opoio einai to pio akrivo mano pou phra pote (an k den to metaniwnw).
    to black pearl den to exw dokimasei, ti xrwma einai akrivws? duskola katalavaineis apo to mpoukali (k na fantasteis to exw dei k apo konta).

    filia marianne
    (aaa rixe mia matia an thes sto “are you curvy? embrace it” post mou, den xreiazete na pw polla nomizw o titlos ta leei ola)
    Marianne M. recently posted..Are you curvy? Embrace it!My Profile

    • Thank you Marianne! Kai mena dwro mou ta ekanan ta Chanel, den ta pira moni mou…i alitheia einai oti exw ena poli paromoio me to Quartz pou to xa parei prin merikous mines kai thelw na ta sigrinw…M’aresei poli to xrwma omws giati miazei me rose gold pou to latrevw…Kai egw sinithws den pairnw akriva…mono ena Chanel eixa ws twra…kai den mporw na pw oti eimai ikanopoiimeni me tin poiotita…ta GT Cosmetics pou anakalipsa fetos kai forawi sinexeia einai ontws poli kalitera…
      To black pearl, einai ena grizomavro…paei kai ligo pros to mple…periergo giati exei glitter kai allazei kapws sto fws…kane enlarge na ti deis kalitera ama thes…
      Tha diavasw sigoura to post sou opws panta, min anisixeis!

  4. Wow you were a cooking machine, T is right, I don’t know of anyone who bakes that much in such a short time! Everything looks incredible, especially the cupcakes and melomakarona.. you’re very talented in the kitchen! I wish we had as much food as you, the holidays were nice for me nevertheless. And macarons are my favourite thing – you should try and make some!
    Steph recently posted..Friday Five: Floral PrintsMy Profile

    • hahaha I believe I was, during the holidays! I don’t know what was going on with me. I wanted so much to bake and prepare lots and lots of food. Tomorrow we will start a diet with my mom, so no more sweets and other yummy foods! It was about time!
      Food is something us Greeks know very well. hehe We love food. I’ve never tried making macarons but I want to. I heard they’re difficult to make. So I will need my mother to help me with them, as she’s more experienced in the kitchen.

      • I have noticed that, and Greek food is amazing! I hope you get to make macarons one day, we some times make them because I love eating them and they are a little hard to make but they taste so good, buying them is really expensive here 🙁
        Steph recently posted..Casual lunchMy Profile

    • hehe I didn’t cook everything by myself. Most of the food was cooked by my mom, (and some of it was made by my aunt) and I was her helper. But I did make and baked all the sweets/desserts.

    • hahaha maraki m ekanes kai gelasa! Min anisixeis kai egw exw kapsei patates, ama einai poli kauto to ladi simvainei! Me to tiganisma genika den ta paw kai teleia…Panta exw agxos sto kanoniko mageirema! Alla ta glika mou fainontai pio eukola! Fisika den kanw tipota diskolo! Aples sintages akolouthw…
      Ta almira fagita pou vlepeis stis pics einai ftiagmena mostly apo ti mama kai ti theia mou! Egw anelava ta glika…kathws kai ekana ola auta pou vlepeis stis prwtes fwto…ta exw kanei toses polles fores ta teleutaia xronia pou exw sinithisei…
      Filia, paw na anevasw to neo mou post! 🙂

  5. Pingback: Miss Robin Hood | Outfit post | Do You Speak Gossip?

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