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Exploring the Food in Our Favorite Holiday Songs

Sun, Dec 18, 2016 at 10:00AM

Exploring the Food in Our Favorite Holiday Songs

Does listening to your favorite holiday tunes ever make you hungry? Or give you a hankering for something sweet? The reason is in the lyrics—many of our favorite seasonal songs include lines about sweet desserts, family dinners, and more!

In today’s blog, we will be exploring the food items mentioned in some of our favorite songs—from the classic and traditional, to the unique dishes you might not have heard of before.

Pumpkin pie

“There’s a happy feeling nothing in the world can buy

When they pass around the coffee and the pumpkin pie.” – Sleigh Ride

This quintessential holiday hit showcases one of our favorite treats of the season—pumpkin pie! Its associations with Thanksgiving and the holidays likely began soon after the Mayflower arrived in America—while we weren’t yet preparing the pie itself, this is when settlers first discovered the flavorful fall-time squash that is native to the North American continent. Centuries later, pumpkin pie arose in American cookbooks and became a staple of holiday dinners.


“There’ll be parties for hosting,

Marshmallows for toasting,

And caroling out in the snow…” – It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year

Toasting marshmallows might sound a lot like a summertime activity—but as this classic Christmas song shows, there’s no wrong time for enjoying the warmth of a fire and a gooey marshmallow treat!

Roasted chestnuts

“Chestnuts roasting on the open fire

Jack Frost nipping at your nose...” – The Christmas Song

While chestnuts can be eaten raw, they taste much sweeter and have a more pleasant texture after being roasted—so it’s no wonder that this famous tune featured them so heavily. If you want to try this treat at home, you can cook yours in an oven, no peeling required— just toss them with some sugar to get an ever sweeter taste.


“Gather round the table, we'll give you a treat

Sevivonim to play with and lakes to eat.” – Hanukkah, Oh Hanukkah

It’s impossible to listen to this classic Hanukkah tune without thinking about the delicious potato pancake—although it first started out as a cheese dish! We saw the shift toward potato latkes in the 1800s, when crop challenges in Eastern Europe led to many more potatoes being planted, making it an easy basis for the beloved treat.

Figgy pudding

“Now bring us some figgy pudding,

Now bring us some figgy pudding,

Now bring us some figgy pudding,

And a cup of good cheer.” – We Wish You a Merry Christmas

We’ve all heard the lyrics—but what, exactly, is a figgy pudding, anyway? A figgy pudding is an English kind of pudding—a more substantial dessert than the creamy pudding we’re familiar with in the United States. It is said that the actual pudding could’ve started out as a plum-based pudding, not figs as the song suggests. It may not be eaten with frequency, especially here in the States, but you can try it for yourself this holiday to understand what the urgency in this song is all about!

We hope that today’s blog satisfied your hunger for insight on your favorite holiday tunes—now to take care of your actual hunger, try out a favorite family recipe or come on in to Stonewood for a meal you won’t forget!




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