Food & Food Culture

7:33am

Tue December 25, 2012
The Salt

'Canadian Peanut Butter' Connects Mainers To Their Acadian Roots

Originally published on Thu December 27, 2012 12:08 pm

Robert Bisson of Bisson and Sons Meat Market in Topsham, Maine, with his granddaughter. The butcher shop sells traditional cretons during the holidays.
Lauren McCandlish NPR

Last Christmas, we told you about tourtières, the savory meat pies Canadians serve around the holidays. Now, we bring you cretons, a Québécois delicacy found throughout Canada and parts of New England this time of year.

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1:51pm

Mon December 24, 2012
The Salt

Christmas A Busy Season For Tamale-Makers

Originally published on Mon December 24, 2012 3:18 pm

Tamales in Ofelio Crespo's home on Dec. 20.
Lauren Rock NPR

For Christmas, Central and Mexican-American families don't crave a holiday turkey; they want a plate of steaming hot tamales.

Gustavo Arellano, author of the book Taco USA: How Mexican Food Conquered America, says that to him, tamales are more than food. They transmit Latino culture during Christmas.

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11:17am

Mon December 24, 2012
The Two-Way

A Moveable Feast: What Are You Leaving For Santa?

Originally published on Mon December 24, 2012 11:53 am

Aside from the traditional plate of cookies, some households planned to leave Santa gourmet surprises that would land most people on the naughty list at the local gym.
Larry Crowe AP

Milk and cookies might be the traditional Santa offering on Christmas Eve, but in at least one household, St. Nicholas will be getting smoked salmon and scotch.

It's just one out-of-the-ordinary example we gleaned from a call out to fans of NPR's Facebook page. Many of them involved a different sort of Christmas "spirit" — the kind that could push Mr. Claus over the legal limit, at least during the U.S. leg of his annual aerial circumnavigation.

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9:38am

Mon December 24, 2012
The Salt

Polish Christmas Wafer: A Flavorless Tradition That's Oh So Sweet

The oplatek, embossed with a Christmas scene, is shared among family members before Christmas Eve dinner.
iStockphoto.com

Nothing says "I love you," at least in my Polish-American family, quite like the sharing of a thin, flat, tasteless wafer called an oplatek at Christmas.

We're not alone. Before sitting down to Christmas Eve dinner, many families with roots in Poland and other Eastern European countries will take part in this tradition, which has roots dating back hundreds of years.

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5:33am

Mon December 24, 2012
Around the Nation

Ill. Chef To Make Gigantic Green Bean Casserole

Mark Shoopman is into green beans. The Illinois chef is cooking 270 pounds of beans and 75 pounds of onions. His goal, according to WMBD in Peoria, is the largest green bean casserole in Central Illinois.

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