Wednesday, 10 December 2014

Las Posadas

Las Posadas

Christmas is just around the corner.  If you are counting days...15 days away.  Many of you will have traditions that have been in your family for years.  Some of you may have no traditions.  Many of us love Christmas and and those family traditions.  There are lots of us that love the over-eating that we celebrated with a relish!  

We will not have a traditional family gathering this year.  We will most likely not eat the traditional Canadian meal.  We will not enjoy the snow and cold.  We will not go carolling, or tobogganing, or skating.  Once again we will incorporate Mexican traditions, foods and customs - one of which is the 'posada'.  

Posada is Spanish for 'lodging' or 'accommodation'; it is mostly said in the plural, as it is a more than one day event.  It is a Catholic tradition but Protestants also celebrate it.  A posada can be very ritualistic - meaning you sing the song, you dress in character, you sort of follow a script.  

Posada Song

But, more often than not, when someone invites you to a 'posada' it means they are inviting you to a Christmas gathering in their home.  It is a reason to get together as friends and family; to eat, drink and be merry.  We already have some marked down on our calendar and I am sure there will be more.  Some typical things found will be "Atole" which is a traditional drink made with masa (corn flour), water, piloncillo (unrefined cane sugar), cinnamon, vanilla and optional chocolate or fruit flavour (its a love it, or not so much, kind of drink).  I enjoy it, especially if I'm outside and its cool. 

 Another thing served is 'tamales', which is a dish made of masa (a starchy dough, usually corn based) which is steamed or boiled in a leaf wrapper, which is discarded before eating :) They can be filled with meats, cheese, fruit, and chilies.  Best not to ask for a recipe and just enjoy - health wise they are questionable, but oh so good! 

And, Ernie's favourite, "Ponche", which is a warm fruit punch - with the fruit pieces in it!  It is thick with fruit pieces and nuts. Ernie is awaiting this first 'posada' where they will serve it.

So, will me miss a Canadian Christmas?  No, because my gift arrives in 4 days - all three kids!  So, with our kids 'under the tree' we will have a 'very Merry Christmas'.  And, of course, most importantly, the meaning of Christmas is the same - the baby Jesus came into this world ..."For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord." (Luke 2:11)

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