Last week we shared with you some Christmas Eve traditions from Cuba and Colombia. As we noted, the employees at Nueva Cocina represent many Hispanic cultures, so this week we are focusing on traditions from Puerto Rico, where the holiday celebrations begin as early as November and can continue until mid-January.
Beginning in early December, churches conduct Misas de Aguinaldo, which are masses held at dawn featuring the singing of Christmas carols. This period of time culminates in Nochebuena (Christmas Eve), which actually has more significance than Navidad (Christmas Day) for most Puerto Ricans. In fact, presents are actually exchanged on January 6th, which is El Día de los Tres Reyes Magos (Three Kings Day), although some Puerto Ricans give gifts on Christmas Day too. Continue reading “Pancakes and Puerto Rico” »
Can you guess what dessert dates back to the 13th century and is still enjoyed by many different cultures around the world today? In fact, this sweet and creamy concoction has been around longer than apple pie, and was first mentioned in ancient Roman medical text books rather than cook books, where it was recommended for upset stomachs. The answer is rice pudding. Continue reading “Sugar and Spice and Everything Nice …..” »
Between the organizing, shopping, cooking and cleaning, hosting a Thanksgiving meal takes a lot of effort. In order to savor the important moments with family and friends and Live La Vida Deliciosa without succumbing to the stress from the preparation it took to get to the actual meal, you need some practical planning.
1. Start with a schedule so you can spread your tasks out over the days ahead of the meal.
2. When you conceptualize the menu, include some recipes that can be cooked in an alternative applianceto your oven, like a crockpot or rice cooker, so your dishes aren’t concentrated around just one appliance.
3. Plan a cleaning schedule, and assign duties to all family members. It will also decrease the drama if cleaning is taken care of a few days ahead of time.
4. Make sure to clear and clean your refrigerator a few days ahead of Thanksgiving Day to hold all the groceries and leftovers.
5. Your family members or guests who stay over will need something the next day to eat. Here’s an impressive, but very easy and quick Latin recipe that uses food from the night before. The Nueva Cocina Taco Fresco Seasoning gives your leftovers a lift, but you a much-needed break.
Continue reading “How to Impress Without the Stress on Thanksgiving” »