Planning Christmas Eve Dinner the Lithuanian way and Turkish börek

Christmas Eve dinner is the most important event in my house. Most probably because it requires much preparation and the dinner must be meatless. Even though two weeks are still to go, I already imagine myself laying a handfull of dried grass and a white tablecloth with snow white plates, cutlery and a lovely certerpiece with candles. Below have a look at a preliminary menu that I'm going to make for Christmas Eve. The main rules that I follow are - no meat, 12 dishes with main traditional Lithuanian ingredients and a bit of modern touch.

Christmas Eve Dinner Lithuanian way:

1. Pureed beetroot soup with dried wild mushrooms
2. Mini potato cakes
3. Dumplings with mushrooms and cabbage
4. Herring, apple and dried fruit salad with honey and lemon dressing
5. Mushrooms suffed with caramelised onions, spinach and bread crumbs
6. Fried mushrooms with onion and tomato sauce
7. Fish baked in mustard sauce
8. Beetroot, carrot, apple salad
9. Bean and smoked fish salad
10. Baked apples with nuts and raisins
11. 'Kuciukai' - mini yeast dough dumplings
12. Cranberry drink

This is just the first draft. But more or less this is what you might expect if you decide to step by on Christmas Eve at my home. What are you planning for Christmas Eve dinner?

Below have a look at a Turkish classical dish - Börek - spinach, leek and lor ( similar to ricotta cheese) cheese rolled in phillo dough. By the way, I'm also planning entirely Turkish New Year's Eve party! :D

What we need:

9 sheets of phillo
2 tbsp of olive oil
300 gr of lor cheese
100 gr of frozen spinach
1 leek
salt and pepper to taste
1 tbsp of butter

What we have to do:

1. Fry sliced leek with a butter, add defrosted spinach. Season with salt and pepper. Then mix them with lor cheese.
2. Take 3 sheets of phillo, brush with olive oil, add a third of the filling and roll it. Brush with olive oil and place on a baking sheet. Repeat the same with the rest of filling and phillo.
3. Place the böreks into a pre-heated oven ( 180C) and bake for 30 min until they get golden brown and crispy.
4. Serve with fresh vegetables and yogurt. Enjoy!!!
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  1. When I was in Istanbul, I enjoyed watching the ladies in shops on Istiklal St. opening phyllo!

  2. These look wonderful, Jolita. I'm guessing that you abstain from meat on Christmas eve. Your other dishes sound festive and wonderful as well.

  3. I am from Lithuania, but these recipes is not like we really have on Christmas Eve:)

  4. I'm Lithuanian myself and that's exactly what I'm going to have on Christmas Eve!

  5. These look delicious! Good luck w. your Christmas Eve dinner!


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