Monday, December 16, 2013

Home for Christmas

Seeing the beautiful fluffy snow resting on the trees branches this morning is a sure sign that Christmas is fast approaching...

After 20 years of living in Canada, I still find myself in awe of certain things that I didn't grow up with. I am truly thankful that after all all this time there is still a lot to discover.

I loved Christmas growing up in the Philippines. I would always wait for that day when my grandmother would give me the "Go" to start putting up the decorations. I would start by picking out a potted plant in our backyard, since we couldn't afford to buy an artificial tree.

This tree literally looked like the one on the "Charlie Brown christmas special" and it felt just as special.

Our town came to life for this one joyous celebration. All the houses were filled with lights. Our church would always have a Christmas party for the kids and we all participated by singing in the choir while all parents watched and laughed at our childish mistakes. At the end we exchanged gifts and I would always hoped for "Curly tops," which is a chocolate shaped like tiny cupcake. What can I say? I love chocolates.

After church we went home and ate whatever we could afford to make that year. Whatever we did and whatever we ate, we were always happy and thankful.

Such a humble Christmas and I miss it so much...

Living here in Canada has given me such opportunities beyond my wildest dreams. Things that might not have been possible back home.

I bought my first real Christmas tree this year. A far cry from the potted plant I used in years past from my grandma's backyard. As I unwrapped every snowflake ornament that I have patiently collected and bought at Boxing Day sales over the years, I am reminded of the dollar store ornaments I hung on those limp branches.

No matter how beautiful I think my Christmas tree is this year, I will always remember that potted plant and how Christmas meant more to me then than all the Pottery Barn ornaments I could buy to decorate this incredibly fragrant tree.

Yes, Christmas is no longer the same for me. I's colder. It's crazier. It's tiring. Bigger tree. Expensive ornaments. More gifts and too much food.

I don't for one second loathe what christmas has become to me. I welcome it for what it's worth but one thing will never change: How I feel about it. It's still the same but with a bigger more expensive tree...

As I reward myself with this delicious bowl of soup after spending hours decorating my tree, I started to miss that potted plant but I know my grandma would love my Christmas tree and just like that I am home... again.

Roasted Vegetable Soup


  • 1 large carrot, chopped
  • 1 large yam, chopped
  • 1 large red pepper, chopped
  • 1 medium cauliflower, chopped
  • 2 cups porcini mushroom, chopped
  • 2 onion, chopped
  • 2 clove garlic, chopped
  • 3 medium yukon gold potato, chopped
  • 1 tbsp ginger, chopped
  • 1 tbsp fresh rosemary, chopped
  • 1 tbsp fresh thyme, chopped
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • olive oil
  • 8 cups chicken stock
  • 2 cups hot water
  • seasoning
  1. Preheat oven to 475 F.
  2. In a roasting pan, bring chopped vegetables, olive oil, seasoning and half of the fresh herbs. Mix well and roast for 35-40 minutes turning every 10-15 minutes.
  3. In a large pot, saute onion, ginger and garlic in butter.
  4. Add chicken stock and bring to boil in medium-high heat.
  5. Add roasted vegetables with it's juices to the pot. Bring to a boil then add the rest of the herbs.
  6. Cook for another 20 minutes then bring down temperature to low and simmer for another 15-20 minutes.
  7. Let it cool for 20 minutes and puree in a blender one batch at a time.
  8. Season to taste.
                              Make it a great Christmas!
           -- This post is dedicated to my dear friend patty --

1 comment:

  1. This soup is to die for. One of the best vegetarian soups I've ever had! - PC