Christmas Memories of Grandmama

by Carla
(Los Angeles)

My grandmama immigrated from Germany and I have such wonderful memories of Christmas with her. It's my favorite, because it is the only one I know. Every year it was the same. The sights, sounds and smells are burned into my memory.


The house always smelled so warm and spicy when you walked in the door. All the special decorations from her huge collection of nutcrackers and hummels to the advent calendars and the large nativity carousel that used candles to make it move.


There was always a large bowl on hot punch made from tea and wine waiting to take the chill off. There were bowls of old fashion ribbon candies and candy canes everywhere you turned.


There would be different types of herring pickled, in sour cream and chopped in a salad with apples and pickles. Dinner was always Sauerbraten; it took days to prepare along with that delicious gingersnap gravy, riced potato balls (dumplings) and red cabbage with sautéed apples.


There were tons of treats. My grandmama would bake for days making homemade stollen with fruits and nuts, gingerbread, soft ginger cookies dipped in chocolate and of course Apple Strudel. The anticipation watching her stretch that dough. She also baked tons of spritz cookies and the traditional ginger bread house that I got to decorated on Christmas Eve.



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Apr 02, 2013
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Memories of Oma
by: Anonymous

Carla, I so enjoyed your recollections of your Grandmama. It made me think of my Oma and Opa. We so enjoyed going to their house when we were small.

Yes, the house always smelled warm and spicy as well. I loved all the German gingerbread and Stollen. And then there was the chocolate and the marzipan. I still love that.

Oma always made a "Bunte Teller" (coloured plate) for each one of us. Each plate was filled with oranges, apples, nuts, chocolates, and candies. Sometimes there would be a little present tucked in among the goodies.

So much fun reminiscing. Thanks!

Dec 19, 2009
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Stirs My Memories
by: Gerhild

Thank you, Carla, for sharing your memories. It reminds me of the special dinners my Mom made. The Sauerbraten - yummy! I think I may make that one real soon again.

Yes, we also had the ribbon candy and all the delicious treats you mentioned. Christmas is such a festive time of the year and food is such an important part.

It's so nice to take a walk back in time.

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