"Old Year" is the Dutch phrase for New Years Eve, and is very fitting of the way I see the transition. Putting down the old on Wednesday and picking up the new on Thursday. The setting of this celebration is that of a small intimate afterglow. This makes it easier to reflect and have meaningful conversation. You guessed it,"chatting" is to me like wispy clouds that turn into vapor.
I keep the beds ready when kids come, so they can crash whenever they get too tired to stay up, with a "cross my heart" promise we will wake them up before the fireworks start.
One of the main topics of conversation is the major markers everyone had in this year; the good as well as the bad. A healthy way to air some undealt things, instead of stuffing them year after year! Both my hubby and I see to it that it does not turn into a pity party or "everything's going to the dogs" tirade, so it remains pleasant for everyone!
The food is a blend of international treats. Our focus is a Dutch deep fried apple doughnut ("appelflap") and "oliebol" (prounoune "olie" as in glory), which is made from the same dough. Only it is round and has raisins in it, not apple. It has become tradition that my hubby makes these treats since he mastered them to perfection(maybe I'll give the recipe next New Years Eve).
These two Dutch treats are only eaten at this time of year and you will see booths in Holland that sell them. They are usually served with powdered sugar sprinkled on them.
My mother always made "fruit bowl" - as she called it - for this occasion (recipe below). I have kept her tradition, since California is known to be the fruitbowl of America. The fresh zingy taste is a delightful counterpart to the apple doughnut and oliebol.
On my table also appears a 7-layer dip, reminiscent of Mexican flavors, eaten with corn chips, as well as a cranberry-nut coffee cake.
Juice and other non-alcoholic drinks and wine for the thirsty ones.
A rounded blend of flavors should keep everyone from going hungry till the clock strikes TWELVE.
HAPPY NEW YEAR TO ALL -wishes and prayers.
We go outside to watch the fireworks in the neighborhood. Then everyone scatters into the night to wake up when a brand new year is on the horizon.
2 cups of bite size fruit per person,
such as strawberries or cherries with their juice, bananas, apples, grapefruit (not too tart), kiwi, pineapple.
1/2 - 1 cup dry red wine
1/2 - 1 cup of Seven-Up
the Fruit Bowl is served in a small cup or wineglass. For the amount of liquids, the fruit should be floating in the liquids (like soup). If you are a person who likes food to be decorative, let round orange slices float on top. The Fruit Bowl is poured with a soup ladel into the cup or glass. Have small spoons ready.