In over a century-old carol "The 12 Days of Christmas" describes a shorter period of time for festivities. December and, in certain places, a significant portion of November are regularly observed as Christmas celebration months too. But in the Philippines, Christmas Season starts with the "BER" months and that commences in September giving the festivity a new meaning. Can you picture an entire country freely giving warmth and affection for this considerable time? However, the celebrations don't stop in December. Beginning on September 1 and lasting through the first week of January or in the Feast Day of Epiphany. it is indeed a Christmas fever. Simbang Gabi, a nine-day period of early-morning mass attendance from December 16 to December 24, is a habit that many of the believers follow. It is assumed that Spanish missionaries originated the custom in the 17th century. Filipinos are a joyful people who love to prepare food for celebrations, gather around tables for singing and dancing, and generally have a good time.
In the Philippines, Christmas celebrations always involve a feast. As soon as the clock strikes midnight, families begin to assemble around dinner tables as our streets are decorated with flashing parols and glowing holiday lights. The children pretend to be calm when one of their parents says grace, but they fidget with excitement when they see the feast that has been served on the table.
Christmas Ham: In the Philippines, we prefer a sweeter flavor to our meals. Because of this, our Christmas hams are either covered in a brown sugar crumble or a syrupy glaze. Most frequently, it is served alone, fried to add taste, or paired with bread and kesong puti (goat's cheese).
Keso de Bola—Keso de Bola is how we refer to the Dutch cheese Edam in our region. It frequently serves as both a table centerpiece and a candle in a red paraffin shell at Christmas meals. A Swedish doctor who emigrated to the Philippines was the person who initially introduced it to the nation.
Pancit Malabon: This annatto-seed-flavored dish of yellow noodles has a festive appearance and is quite excellent. Pancit Malabon, which is stuffed with eggs, prawns, and chicharon, never fails to fill even the hungriest tummies.
Filipino-style spaghetti, sometimes referred to as Sweet Spaghetti, is made with a substantial amount of sugar in contrast to tart Italian red sauces. Additionally necessary are indeed the addition of processed cheese and bright red hot dog bits. To foreigners, it can sound strange, yet it actually works!
Lechon: This portion needs little explanation. This roasted pig with crunchy, oily skin will win (and clog!) the hearts of everyone at dinner and is the centerpiece of every Christmas table.
Buko Pandan: Despite the fact that pandan leaves are frequently used in savory recipes, this dessert employs gelatin that has been flavored with pandan and is combined with coconut and cream. The outcome is this cheery delight in green and white that is frequently consumed during the holiday season.
Kakanin: In the Philippines, we even made dessert out of rice since we love it so much. Kakanin is the name for a variety of sticky sweet treats that come in a variety of hues and flavors. We never get tired of our sweet rice delicacies, whether it be the festive Puto Bumbong and Bibingka or the daily Suman and Kutsinta.
fruit salad: One of the simplest sweets to make is fruit salad. To finish off your Christmas supper, simply purchase a can of fruit cocktail and stir in some all-purpose cream. Additionally, some families give the fruit salad a unique twist by including tapioca or coconut. There are no rules; feel free
Christmas is the time of year that is most frequently observed both in the Philippines and around the world. Celebrate it the Pinoy way to make it unforgettable. You'll have something to look forward to besides merely unwrapping gifts. So don’t be surprised if someone greets you this early “Maligayang Pasko! Merry Christmas!”. After all, the essence of Christmas must be in our hearts everyday no matter if it is a BER-month on in December.