Alia’s First Christmas. Celebrating Christmas in Jordan

It’s a strange feeling not being with all your friends and family at a time of year like Christmas. Thankfully though for the wonders of video calling I at least get to see and talk with my family and watch my little nephews enjoy the excitement of Christmas morning. Even if they don’t understand why Aunty An can’t come and play with the new toys with them and the computer screen gets lots of kisses which is adorable.

It is my third Christmas here in Jordan, and Alia’s first. Today we went for Christmas lunch at another Aussie expat Christine and her husband Shadi’s house. It was a combined effort with Christine preparing roast chickens, gravy and dessert and I did the vegetables.

Eating vegetables just as a dish themselves is not that common here in Jordanian cusine and it is something that Christine and I both miss. So in the spirit of having a Christmas lunch and spoiling ourselves I probably got a bit carried away with the vegetables. I did roast potatoes, roast carrots, roast onions and roast garlic, cauliflower with white sauce, green beans, broccoli, green peas and a tomato, eggplant and caramelised onion gratin. Christine had roasted the chickens in a salt crust and made a yummy homemade stuffing and gravy and we had a delicious feast.  We had intended to have roast pumpkin as well, but with the only pumpkins available in Wadi Musa being enormous and 20JD each (about $30) it just couldn’t be justified.

Dessert was a treat as Christine had recently been back to Australia and had brought back with her an individual serve plum pudding. Christine and I didn’t even offer our husbands any of the plum pudding (it would be wasted on them!) and thoroughly enjoyed it with custard and thick cream. The boys got jelly and fruit and custard which they were very happy with.

Christine and Shadi had a real christmas tree so Alia was able to play with Christmas decorations to her hearts content.

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Then this evening we visited Amra Palace Hotel (where I worked at reception) as they always put on a big Christmas buffet and the chefs really go all out.  They had even got a Santa’s outfit and one of the maintenance staff dressed up and was a big hit with the kids. I hadn’t thought that Alia would get a photo with Santa for her first Christmas! Not that she was all that happy with the man in red – probably didn’t help that it was an hour past her bedtime.

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