Showing posts with label Christmas. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Christmas. Show all posts

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Watch The Pope Conduct Midnight Mass Live From The Vatican Christmas Eve.

Watch the Pope Conduct Live Mass from The Vatican 12/24/09 at 10:00 pm.

Buon Natale....Merry Christmas To All the Italian American Girl Readers.

Dear Amici,

Another year has gone by and we're celebrating Christmas eve and day in the next two days. I want to take this opportunity to say thank you to each and every single one of you for your love and support over this past year. Christmas is an enormously important and spiritual holiday for the Italian family, and in celebrating this joyous time, we come together and share love, food, traditions, religion and compassion for one another. We get caught up sometimes in the hard weighing dictating and sometimes negative parts of daily life, but we have to always remember to do better, love, help and count our blessings. Again, I wish you all the best this Christmas season and a Happy Healthy New Year. Buon Natale! Baci!


Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Top Italian Gift Guide For Christmas 2009.

I know, I know..its only October but guess what? Its that time of year again when we start compiling our "Top Italian Gift Guide" for this holiday season. If you're an Italian or cultural vendor business owner, author, celebrity, entertainer or creator of Italian or culturally themed items (Jewelery, Books, CDs, Wines, Luxury, Fashion, Travel Services, etc), please email me to be considered for inclusion on this year's list. I can't promise everyone will be on the list. Please include in "Subject Line" --Top Italian Gift Guide.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Petrali, Italian Fig Cookies

Many southern Italians make the most delicious cookies during Christmas time. The Italian fig cookies called, Petrali are fig filled cookies that are a speciality from southern Italy and Sicily. Its often times hard to find a bakery where you can get these but if you have time and patience to find the ingredients, then bake away. The first time I actually made Petrali was in my aunt's house in Italy. The process is incredible and the ingredients are as fresh as can be, what I noticed about the process is that my aunt and cousins are so patient with the preparation. When the cookies are done, oh my lord are they good. We didn't make them this year, but I did find recipe online that outlines how to make these fig filled cookies. Good Luck. If you know how or want to share your knowledge on petrali, post away!

Fig Cookies Recipe

Friday, December 19, 2008

Italian Knot Cookies

For those of you missing the last post on myself, sister and mom making Italian knot cookies. Here posted to the left is my sister's batch of Italian knot cookies. She makes these unbelievable tasting cookies with such love and real authentic tactics. She learned from the best, my mom. This recipe is actually my mother's version of the Italian knot cookie. These cookies are such a hit over the holidays that my sister takes baking orders from friends and local people wanting trays of Italian knot cookies. The presentation is beautiful too. I'll post more on my sister, Meri and her cooking skills soon.

Are The Seven Fishes Really An Italian-American Christmas Eve Tradition for All Families?

Christmas is a very important time in an any Italian or Italian American family. If you grew up with a strong sense of faith then Christmas is about more than just gifts and entertaining. With every family, I think traditions vary. As Italian Americans we come from different regions of Italy or maybe many of us come from Southern Italy or Sicily. Either way, we've evolved our Italian traditions to match the American traditions of Christmas. Christmas is Christmas, unlike Thanksgiving, this is a holiday celebrated by Catholics all around the world. Even celebrated by non-Catholics. Through the years, our traditions in celebrating Christmas have always remained true to our Italian heritage, but I will say and I am not sure anyone else can agree or chime in on this, but our family does not do the traditional seven fishes.

Now, if you go to Italy on Christmas eve, and visit with someone-- yes, there might be a fish dish, but no one does the seven fishes. I think the seven fishes evolved here in the states and had more emphasis because aunts, grandmothers were trying to preserve the old traditional Italian ways of celebration. Either way, you can enjoy the seven fishes or have what we have, which is usually Lasagna, pizza, or anything bready. My family comes from a town in Italy that sits right on the Mediterranean, so fish is no stranger to us, but yet its the last thing we eat on Christmas Eve. Its such a strange thing for me to compare what other generations of Italian Americans do for the holidays or what they think is traditional because for me its always been a close connection of tradition, so I am always amazed at the lengths that many Italian Americans go to --to keep their culture and old traditions alive in Christmas. Its actually very beautiful. Feel free to share your Christmas traditions here on our post!

Great post today in the NY Times:

Monday, December 15, 2008

What Are Your Italian American Christmas Traditions?

As Italian Americans we all share the fact that we descend from Italy with our family traditions and set cultures. With time our traditions and ways have evolved with the American lifestyle and we've managed to create a combination of two cultural identities. This Christmas we will all gather together and practice those traditions. Some of you might cook fish on Christmas Eve or go to church. Is there an important dish someone will continue to cook and carry the traditions on for? Let's talk about Christmas and how you will be celebrating your Italian American Christmas this year? Tell us about your Italian American traditions? Do you think you keep your Italian heritage alive? I invite you all to comment on this post, lets share our similarities and learn more about others.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

The Calabrese Secret Decoder Ring.

As the holidays are slowly approaching, I find myself spending more time with my parents or around their house. With a busy schedule, its not always easy to meet their demands of attendance at family functions or just regular everyday.

So, I really think that my family is super funny, and if you saw the day to day, you would probably laugh too. This past weekend, I helped my father put up the Christmas lights on the house. Now, mind you this is a huge endeavor every year. My brothers and sister have long resigned their duty to putting up and helping my parents put up the lights because they realize its a task that requires extreme patience and.. ok..forget that..I'm doing it because I'm the youngest and I guess I'm paying my dues last. There you have it.

Its the order of age that dictates who gets stuck with helping my parents on certain things. Anyway, so we begin putting up the lights, and no matter what year, my father always puts up a fight with me on how to put up the lights. I tell him, "Papa-- don't put the big lights with the little has to match.." Do you think he listens,? No. Here I am disconnecting lights right after he decides to mess up the symmetry of the lights. He has no regard for design, his ideology is, "what's-a -da-diff-a-rence?" I try to tell him, yes there is a difference.

So, the comedy to this is, I'm stringing lights and he's messing up the lights on the next set of bushes. The neighbors heard us yelling back and forth in Italian and English. Then, here comes my mother sticking her head out of the door, to tell me not to put lights on a certain tree because she doesn't like it. Well, Mom,...guess what?...that tree has lights on it already. " ci fa niente..) Really, as she's standing there with the infamous puss on her face, so here I go, Margaret disconnects the friggen tree so she's happy. The irony is at the end of the stringing, I test all the lights and my mother and father are both standing there. So, the tree that my mother specifically says not to string, is not lit. She says, " Ma perche, non du-ma.?"( this is phonetic dialect--not a real word.) Um.."ma, did you not tell me to disconnect the lights off this tree?" She says, "Yeah, ma se como tu i min-tiste gia, i potive ra-sarre." (again this is all phonetically spelled, so you can understand.)

I just looked at her and said, "you must be joking! You guys are incredible..!!! I need a secret decoder ring just to figure out what you guys really mean or want!!!!!" There you have it, the eloquent masterpiece of a moment in putting up the Christmas lights at my parent's house. It just doesn't get any better than that. Oh and don't think my brothers and sister weren't laughing when I told them. I'll have to mastermind a task for them to do next, so they can get the full effect of Fran and Joe.