Christmas Eve In Poland San Diego Food and Event Photographer

Well, the table is set to look like a snowy woodland meadow….
The potluck club is invited
the only thing left to do is COOK!
As the hostess, I get to choose the country our club visits and prepare the main dish….
so we’re all set for Poland and I’m making Pierogies!
First chore of the day, make mashed potatoes then stir in cheddar cheese and sliced green onions.

Then you can make the dough from scratch or buy wonton skins like I did.

First apply an egg wash around the outside edges – then
add a little scoop of your mashed potato mixture, fold in half and pinch around the edges to seal.

This step can be made ahead (also frozen if you want)

Just before serving, put the little pillows of wonderfulness in boiling water for 2-3 minutes,
then remove them with a slotted spoon and EAT!
You can serve them brushed with melted butter and a dab of sour cream….
So there’s the main dish for tonight – and I have to share a few more things.
First, let me tell you about the Breaking of the Oplatek
One of the most beautiful and most revered Polish customs is the breaking of the  oplatek. The use of the Christmas wafer (oplatek) is not only by native Poles in Poland but also by people of Polish ancestry all over the world.
The oplatek is a thin wafer made of flour and water. For table use, it is white. 
The father or eldest member of the family reaches for the wafer, breaks it in half and gives one half to the mother. Then, each of them breaks a small part from each other’s piece. 
They wish one another a long life, good health, joy and happiness, not only for the holiday season, but also for the new year and for many years to come.   This ceremony is repeated between everyone else present at the meal.
   When this activity is over, they all sit down and enjoy a tasty though meatless supper, after which they sing koledy (Christmas carols and pastorals) until time for midnight Mass, also know as Pasterka (“the Mass of the Shepherds”).

The rest of the courses for our Polish dinner were delish — 
Robin made amazing Kielbasa and a crab dip.
Betsy brought a yummy sauerkraut salad….

Lisa W shared a Hot Vodka with Honey drink, Diane brought mashed potatoes and 
Lisa R. brought a warm cabbage side dish — really good and flavorful!

And Wendy finished off our delicious dinner with fruitcake with rum sauce — YUM!

On Christmas Eve in Poland, the whole family gathers and waits impatiently for the appearance of the first star. With its first gleam, they all approach a table covered with hay and a snow-white tablecloth with 12 courses of food.
 A vacant chair and a place setting are reserved for an unexpected guest, 
always provided for in hospitable Polish homes.

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