I cannot believe that Christmas Eve is tomorrow. Where does the time go? I’m not gonna lie…I’m pretty darn excited. The copious amounts of delicious food, gift exchanges, and the celebration of family and friends is what I love most about this time of year.
Tomorrow, my family is having quite the Christmas Eve feast. Since we’re Ukrainian, we celebrate by having a huge dinner consisting of 12 meatless dishes. This year is the first in a long time where we will be having Pyrizhky, or cabbage buns. I never really grew up on these delectable little dough balls. My Baba, Grandma and Claudia never made them, so they were never a part of our Ukrainian feasts. This year, I decided to take some action and try to make them with Claudia. My soon to be Mother-in-Law was gracious enough to provide us with her recipe (and a bag full of samples!) to try. For our first attempt, they came out extremely well. Claudia made some tweaks, like boiling the sauerkraut, but other than that, we kept true to the recipe. This recipe makes approximately 13-14 dozen Pyrizhky. You can also use any other filling you desire, such as meat. However, we prefer sauerkraut.
I love fruit desserts. Apple, strawberry, raspberry – you name it.
But pineapple? I was a little skeptical.
As you can tell, this recipe is old. It apparently was my Grandmother’s. The image above reaffirms why I needed to create this blog, as this is Claudia’s recipe. Handwritten, worn and slightly yellow. Splash some water on this puppy and it’s a goner.
My Grandmother apparently made this dessert a lot more than Claudia did while I was growing up. Prior to this blog posting, I argued with Claudia that I never tried this tasty dessert before. She vehemently disagreed. When we received a request to make this treat for Christmas, it was then that I fell in love with this delightful slice. Try it and you will too!
The holidays would not be complete without making and decorating Sugar Cookies. As you can tell from the image above, I decorate cookies like a 5 year old. Actually, a 5 year old could probably do a lot better. I still draw stick figures for people. I didn’t do very well in art class.
Claudia received this recipe from a coworker (Stacey) a few years ago. It’s very simple and makes great tasting cookies. We prefer thicker, chewier Sugar Cookies. But you can easily roll this dough out to make thinner, crispier cookies.
I can always tell when the holidays are upon us. My evenings become jam-packed and I spend my Sunday’s in the kitchen with Claudia. I’m talking 6 hours this past Sunday! It was pretty fun. My feet were killing me by the end of it though. I honestly don’t know how Claudia can stand in the kitchen for hours on end making dozens upon dozens of perogies at a time. She’s Superwoman. Somebody buy her a cape!
Last Christmas we ended up featuring a lot of the holiday baking items I enjoyed growing up. Today’s blog is no exception. These cookies are my Dad’s favourite – and for very good reason. They literally melt in your mouth. Literally. This is no joke people. They are the softest, most delicate shortbread cookie I have ever tried. And they are delicious and super, super simple to make.
For as long as I can remember, Date Squares (aka Matrimonial Cake) were always on Claudia’s Christmas baking list. I’ll admit that when I was younger I didn’t fancy them too much and chose holiday desserts on the table that had a lot more chocolate on them. But as I get older (and wiser of course) I have grown to absolutely love them. The buttery crumbly layers and the sweet date filling makes this the perfect recipe for your own holiday baking list.