You may be aware of the United States’ 13-year experiment with prohibition back in the, well, Prohibition Era (1920-1933).
But it is a testament to the stout-hardiness of the Icelandic people that they kept up their beer ban for over five times that long: a full 75 years. Iceland was beer-free between 1914 and 1989 — a time period that roughly mirrors the entire existence of the Soviet Union.
The beer ban was finally repealed …Read more
Forget everything you know about radishes.
Night of the Radishes is one of the most unique holidays in the Western hemisphere. It has been celebrated in Oaxaca for hundreds of years, but only became an official holiday in 1897.
Radishes are actually native to China, and were brought to the New World by Spanish explorers in the 1500′s. Two friars encouraged the the townspeople of Oaxaca to cultivate the radishes, and it is believed one of the friars suggested …Read more
Not a good holiday for those on a diet.
It’s worth wondering how a people noted for their healthy physique could be gastronomically symbolized by a cinnamon bun. The thing is a black hole of caloric intake.
Cinnamon buns, or kanelbullar, have been a Swedish staple since at least the 1920s. According to Birgit Nilsson Bergström of Sweden’s Home Baking Council:
“We found that the cinnamon bun was the best symbol for Swedish …Read more
We have 11 different official languages but only one word for the wonderful institution of braai. It’s braai in Xhosa, it’s braai in English, it’s braai Afrikaans…All it calls for is come with your friends and family, have a little fire, and braai…That should make you proudly South African.
Nobel Peace Prize laureate Archbishop Desmond Tutu
The 24th of September was once known as Shaka Day, in honor of the Zulu …Read more
September 12, 2011
The Mid-Autumn Festival is known as Eighth Moon because it falls of the full moon of the eighth month. It’s also known as Mooncake Day, because billions of mooncakes are prepared for this holiday. (Though billions aren’t necessarily eaten. It’s more like the Chinese holiday fruitcake.)
For generations, moon cakes have been made with sweet fillings of nuts, mashed red beans, lotus-seed paste or Chinese dates, wrapped in a pastry. Sometimes a cooked egg yolk can be …Read more
Last Wednesday in August August 31, 2011 August 29, 2012
364 days out of the year, Buñol is a quiet, ordinary Spanish town country nestled in the foothills of the Valencia mountains about 40 kilometers from the Mediterranean coast; its population is just shy of 10,000.
But if you happen to visit Buñol on the last Wednesday of August, don’t wear your finest. You will notice that the population has tripled in size, the bulk …Read more
Before you grab your towel and get undressed, no, this has nothing to do saunas or back rubs, so put your pants back on. This is a family blog.
No. Spas in Russian means “savior”. The ‘Spases‘ are three folk holidays celebrated in August, that bring the Russian summer season to a close with style. And food.
August 14 (Gregorian) is mokryi Spas, or “Wet Savior”, but is more commonly referred to as …Read more
Today (August 16) the town of Palau de Cedagne in Southwestern France celebrates Xicolatada. At 11 am on this date, residents indulge in a delicious cup of piping hot chocolate.
This 300+ year-old tradition grew out of another festival. According to legend (i.e., Wikipedia):
15 August was once a festival day, and the locals would drink quite a bit, to the point that they felt a bit ill the following morning. To feel better, …Read more