Enjoy the last days of celebratory holiday spirit with Ukrainian Christmas, which falls on January 7 via the Julian calendar. On Christmas Eve, the big celebratory event, Ukrainians share a traditional meal of 12-meatless dishes, representing the 12 apostles. The meal includes: Kutia, which is cooked whole wheat with honey and poppy seeds; Kolach, braided bread surrounding a candle; meatless Borscht; fish; pickled herring; meatless cabbage rolls; perogies; sauerkraut and peas; mashed beans with garlic; Pidpenky, which are mushrooms with gravy. And for dessert there is Uzvar, dried fruit Compote; and Pampushky or Makiwnyk, which is a sweet raised dough with poppy seed, honey and cinnamon filling.
Here is one great meatless Borscht recipe -- if you cook it up and add some mushroom-filled dumplings (frozen/prepared mushroom tortellini work great) you can share in a Ukrainian tradition this week.