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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Swiss chard, with its tender leaves and crisp stalks, is a leafy winter green full of vitamins. This easy soba noodle recipe uses all parts of the chard: The blanched leaves go into a food processor with red miso, rice vinegar, and garlic for a Japanese-inspired pesto sauce. The stalks are chopped up and sautéed with carrots. Then everything’s folded into cooked soba noodles for an easy, healthy vegetarian dish.
What to buy: Swiss chard comes in many varieties and colors including rainbow chard, which is not a variety itself but a mixture of various colors. Any type of Swiss chard will work in this recipe, but white chard makes the brightest-colored pesto.
Miso is a Japanese culinary staple made by fermenting rice, barley, or, most commonly, soy. The two main types are white or shiro miso, which has a sweet, mild flavor, and red or aka miso, which is aged and has a salty, umami flavor. You can find miso paste refrigerated at most grocery stores.
Soba noodles are Japanese buckwheat noodles and can be found in gourmet grocery stores or in Asian markets. If you’re having a hard time finding them, you can substitute whole-wheat linguine or spaghetti.
Dried seaweed (or nori) can be found in the Asian section of most supermarkets and at Asian grocery stores. We like the flavor of the roasted variety for this recipe.
This recipe was featured as part of our Easy Weeknight Vegetarian Main Dishes.