Why Do We Celebrate Christmas on Dec. 25?
There are several reasons Christmas is celebrated on Dec. 25. The date is nine months after March 25, a day recognized by Christians as Annunciation. It was the day Mary was told she would was having a baby. The nine months that follow are an approximation of Jesus’ birth. Dec. 25 also coincides with pagan Winter Solstice celebrations like Saturnalia' and Dies Natalis Solis Invicti. Since they were historically celebrated around that time of year there was precedent for holiday festivities during this time of year.
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What Does the Name 'Christmas' Mean and What Is the Meaning of Christmas?
Christmas is a shortened from the words “Christ’s mass.” It’s derived from the Middle English word "Cristemasse" which has Greek, Hebrew and Latin origins. Christmas is an annual holiday that honors the birth of Jesus Christ. It is celebrated by Christians around the world and is regarded as an important religious and cultural holiday.
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How Can We Celebrate Christmas?
Christmas is traditionally celebrated in many ways and celebrations vary across cultures. In the days leading up to Christmas, people usually put up special decorations including colorful lights and evergreen trees. Gifts are often placed under the tree and exchanged on Christmas day among loved ones. Large meals are also typically served as part of the celebration as well.
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Here’s a recipe for a tart that’s both stylish and simple. The rich bittersweet chocolate filling requires no baking—simply melt bittersweet and semisweet chocolates together with butter, cream, and sugar, and pour the results into a crisp pastry shell. After a few hours in the refrigerator, you’re ready to slice the most luscious, intensely chocolate tart you’ll ever have the pleasure of serving guests. While you’re waiting for the filling to solidify, make the cherry-vodka sauce. Its tart-sweet flavor is a perfect complement to the tart’s dark, trufflelike interior.
Make-ahead notes: Make this tart up to 2 days ahead and store, tightly covered, in the fridge. Let it sit out at room temperature about 1 hour before you’re ready to serve. The cherry-vodka sauce can be made up to 4 days ahead. Refrigerate in an airtight container until ready to use.
This recipe was featured in our Chocolate Desserts photo gallery.
For more chocolaty inspiration, check out our Chocolate Mousse Pie, Nutella Chocolate Cheesecake, and Espresso Mud Pie.