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Big-ass hams, cavalcade of candy canes and, maybe even, having your chestnuts roasting over an open fire.

These are but a few of the taste sensations we associate with Christmas.

Know what other type of food is common around Dec. 25? Curry goat (popular in Jamaica), goose liver foie gras (a holiday fave of the French) or, if you're South Sioux City Library Director Dave Mixdorf, some homemade mincemeat pie.

Indeed, he is known to make this pie of British origins every year, much to the disapproval of some family members.

"Very few people eat mincemeat any more," Mixdorf admitted, "but the holidays wouldn't be the same without it."

Hmm, let's see: a pie that combines apple slices, dried fruits and ground meat in the same recipe? Um ... nope and, truth be told, that curry goat is starting to look better and better to us.

One thing that will never look (or smell) good to us is lutefisk.

A popular Norwegian fish, lutefisk is still the star of the show at an annual fundraiser held every December at Elk Point, S.D.'s St. Paul Lutheran Church.  

Roughly translated, lutefisk means "lye fish" because it is white fish that saturated in a combination of water and lye.

"Yeah, it stinks," lutefisk maker Burdette Hanson told us in 2013, "but it's delicious!"

Apparently, this smelly holiday treat promotes a long and healthy life for its fans. We interviewed Hanson when he was 91 years old. Four years later, he's still a cook at the church's annual lutefisk feed.

Which only goes to prove that there is no right or wrong food to enjoy on Christmas. Don't believe us? Here are some of the oddest holiday eats we've been able to find.


The short answer is no. Belgium's Cougnon (or the Christmas Bread of Jesus) is jam-packed with gluten. Made with flour, eggs, milk, yeast, raisins and sugar, this sweet bread is shaped to actually look like the Baby Jesus. Hey, Flemish people in Belgium eat Jesus on his birthday? That doesn't sound very nice!


OK, we will never understand British cuisine. After repeated viewings of old "Two Fat Ladies" reruns, we've finally figured out that Yorkshire pudding isn't a dessert. It's actually a funky-looking baked popover you'd serve with roast beef and gravy during a Sunday dinner. Similarly, a British plum pudding (a.k.a. a Christmas pudding) doesn't actually have any plums. You see, when the dessert was invented (during Medieval times) the English called raisins "plums." That means a seasonal plum pudding is made with dried raisins, molasses and a crap-load of alcohol. Alright, now this is starting to make sense to us. You must be stoned to eat this stuff. got it.


Staying in Western Europe, a savory appetizer called Devils on Horseback is popular at holiday parties. What's in it? Usually, it's a pitted date wrapped in bacon. Alright, is there any thing called Angels on Horseback? Yup, they're bacon-wrapped oysters.


For our final stops, we go to Serbia, where a ceremonial, round loaf of bread called a Cesnica is an indispensable Christmas tradition. Although recipes mat vary, it is traditional to place a coin in the dough during the kneading process. So, what do you for Christmas this year? How about tuition for a class that teaches the Heimlich maneuver?

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Food and Lifestyles reporter

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