Thursday, December 6, 2012

Slovak Christmas Eve

My mom's side of the family is super Slovak. Like the kind who have magnets that say "Life's too short not to be Slovak," license plates with our very-Slovak last name, items around the house straight from Slovakia, you get the idea. And I gotta say, I love it. I always have. I used to sit on my pap's lap and he would teach me how to say every part of your face in Slovak--my favorite being "zuby" meaning teeth.

When I was younger, my grandma's entire family would get together for "Holy Supper" on Christmas Eve. We don't get together anymore, but I still remember walking into the hall and seeing the long tables set for dinner. Santa Claus would come, and all the Bubba's would be working hard making all the traditional Slovak Christmas Eve dishes. The dinner was so traditional, that even if you were in a serious relationship, even engaged, your significant other couldn't come to Holy Supper. We'd say our prayers and eat the wafer--something I was never excited about when I was little--I thought it tasted like styrofoam. We don't eat meat on Christmas Eve, instead we would have pierogies, mushroom soup, fish, pagachi, and many other delicious dishes.

My grandma still makes salmon patties, but the other traditional items have pretty much gone away. My mom was looking through the course book for the community college nearby, and noticed there is a "Slovak Christmas Eve" cooking class. Guess what I got for my birthday--yup, she signed me up for the class! I had it this past Saturday and absolutely loved it. I learned how to make pierogies, bobalky, pagach, and mushroom soup. Pierogies were way easier than I thought, and for not liking mushrooms, I actually liked the soup. My favorite dish was the bobalky. I told my mom yesterday that I plan on making it for Christmas Eve!

The class was very informative, and I learned more than just cooking. A lot of the students in the class were Slovak, so we talked about all the other traditions, different parts of Slovakia, and where their families came from. I would love to take the class again and have my mom and grandma come with me. I'm so happy to know that I can now carry on the traditions of our family heritage. The entire class I couldn't stop thinking about my pap and how happy I know he is that I'll be cooking some Slovak dishes for our family! I know he wishes he was here to try some, but he will be watching and helping me make sure the recipes are just right!
Pierogies pre-boil.
It gets to be a bit messy.
Pierogies and Bobalky!

1 comment:

  1. This is great!! Will you teach me how to make everything please ;)