It's rapidly heading towards Christmas - less than one month to go - and in Castle Raven we are rapidly taking stock of what Christmas presents we have bought, and what is still to be purchased.
And the wonderful thing about the internet, and indeed blogging, is that you discover things that aren't the same in different countries. In the US nappies are called diapers, kettles aren't seemingly the essential piece of kitchen equipment that they are in the UK, and across most of the world people drive on the wrong side of the road, due to a French chap named after a brandy. Or something like that, history has never been my strong point.
However sometimes, you discover things close to home that you don't expect.
We were talking in the office today, and one of my colleagues was having difficulty understanding the difference between Christmas pudding, and Christmas cake - for reference, below are pictures of both:
By James Petts from London, England (Christmas pudding) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
By James Petts from London, England (Christmas cake) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
But more shockingly, they were seemingly aghast at a common practice of ours, and many other people (I thought).
I always thought that it was quite usual for people to have cheese with their Christmas cake. A decent wedge of Christmas cake, with a healthy slice of cheese - probably Cheddar, or Red Leicester, I would suggest - goes down very well on Christmas Day, accompanied with a nice glass of something.
My colleague couldn't understand the idea of cake, especially with icing, and cheese. I wholeheartedly acknowledge that it does sound odd, but in practice it is delicious. Several people in the office found the cake & cheese combo perfectly normal, while others rejected it.
So, I'd like to throw it out to you - do you have Christmas cake, and if so do you accompany it with cheese? Or is this a horrible idea? And does your family have any traditions that apparently are at odds with society? Let me know in the comments!