Season's Eatings: Holiday Recipe Roundup

As is tradition, my Hungarian clan – all 18 of us  –  will sit down together for Christmas Eve dinner. It's a diverse group of eaters — carnivore, pescatarian, vegetarian, vegan, raw foodist, flextarian, gluten intolerant. And while there are some staunch vegetarians in the world who can't stand to be around meat, and some meat eaters who equate veg heads with the food police, my family's pretty laid back about it all. More choices means more food. And in my clan, it's all about the food – and lots of it!

Granted, my eating raw at first seemed drastic to them. Last year's holiday dinner felt to me more like a food intervention than a celebration, but we've come a long way since then. Mom no longer sees it as a personal affront if I don't eat her chicken paprikash, and everyone has become quite accustomed to the various dishes I've shared at family gatherings throughout the year. Some have even requested recipes. Imagine.

So we'll gather. And we'll feast. We'll tell stories and reminisce about Christmases past. Undoubtedly someone will raise a glass and toast Dad, who's been gone four Christmases now, and offer a blessing on the baby that's growing inside my niece. We'll eat too much and laugh too hard. The stuffed cabbage, chicken paprikash and kolbasz will share the table with winter kale salad and raw pumpkin pie. Carnivore and vegan will sit elbow to elbow, and at least for this one night, all will be right with the world.

Holiday Recipes In The Raw

Still don't know what to serve at your family gathering or bring to the neighbor's Holiday Open House? Well, have a look at this collection of raw eats. Something's bound to catch your eye (or your palette!). Merry Merry!

✵ Earth Mother's famous Holiday Sugar Plums. I dare you to eat just one!

✵ The Smells of the Season: Thumbprint Cookies, Fruity Peppermint Patties, Christmas Balls, Persimmon Nog, Cranberry Wine

Sweet Potato Casserole & Cranberry Cashew Rice Pilaf: These were big hits at Thanksgiving. I've since made the pilaf with wild rice, rather than basmati, and I like it even better!

✵ Behold, the eighth wonder of the world: Ruby Red Grapefruit & Avocado Salad (inspired by my BFF Gwyneth Paltrow!)

✵ What's Christmas without Pumpkin Pie? This one's the bomb! I betcha no one suspects it's raw.

Rawmazing, what an appropriate name: Walnut Cranberry Crackers with Cranberry Orange Spread from the oh so talented Susan Powers.

✵ I flipped when I discovered this gorgeous Winter Kale Salad with Cranberry Poppyseed Dressing. Then again, I have that reaction to most everything Diana Stobo creates.

Chilled Holiday Nog: So creamy! No one would ever guess this is dairy free. I substitute out the maple syrup for local raw honey.

✵ Those pure2raw twins have done it again! I'm crazy for their Candy Cane Macaroons.

✵ Still stumped? Then get yourself a copy of Penni Shelton's Raw For The Holidays. Over 80 recipes! Downloads immediately.

What's on your menu this festive holiday season?

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