12 DAYS OF CHRISTMAS: French holiday dinners comprised of foie gras followed by chocolate logs

(Photo used by permission of Creative Commons)
A traditional French Christmas log.

Cultures around the world have special ways of celebrating the holiday season. In the “12 Days of Christmas” series, sophomores Jack Christian and Allison Zhang will interview students and teachers on their international Christmas experiences. Check back tomorrow to hear about Christmas in Vietnam from sophomore George Nguyen.

“We have this cake called a Christmas log,” freshman Téa Huynh Van, who lived in France until she was 8, said.

“It’s basically just a cake in the shape of a log that we eat at Christmas.”

Food in France around the holidays is very different from America, according to Huynh Van.

A Christmas log is traditionally composed of yellow sponge cake that is rolled into a cylinder then frosted with chocolate buttercream and garnished with chocolate ganache.

Another traditional French Christmas dish is foie gras (goose liver).

“As long as I can remember, we always had foie gras on Christmas,” Huynh Van said.

(Photo used by permission of Creative Commons)
A slice of bread is topped with foie gras and a red wine pickled fig.

“But now we can’t even have it here in California.”

Foie gras has been banned in California since 2012 because the process of making foie gras involves force-feeding birds more food than they would reasonably eat in the wild for the purpose of enlarging the liver.

“I really do miss all of the French food,” Huynh Van said.

“It is just so much better than American food.”

Christmas is also very religious in France, according to Huynh Van.

“Everyone goes to church on Christmas Day no matter what,” she said.

But Christmas Day in France is almost exactly like Christmas Day in America.

“We wake up in the morning, open presents, then have a nice dinner with our family at night,” Huynh Van said.

“But the thing I miss most about Christmas in France is definitely the food.”

By Jack Christian

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