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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This tube cake gingerbread is the creation of my friend Rick Rodgers. Once while he was visiting food writer Bruce Aidells, who is a beer aficionado, they wondered how the intense flavor of stout, the Cabernet Sauvignon of beers, would work as the liquid in a gingerbread. The idea isn’t new after all; I found old Irish recipes using porter ale (a weaker form of stout) in gingerbread, as well as in porter cake, a spicy fruitcake that is also soaked with stout after baking. The dark, dense, malty flavor of the stout ends up making a gourmet, yet old-fashioned, gingerbread that balances the inherent sweetness of the sugar and molasses. I like to use one of the special decorative fluted tube pans to make this cake look really special. Serve warm slices with a small dollop of Orange Hard Sauce melting on the side.
This dish was featured as part of our St. Patty’s Day Recipes photo gallery.