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Khetum – Armenian Christmas dinner

Stuffed carrots (picture taken at Badguer restaurant, Beirut)

On the 6th of January of every year, Armenians all over the world celebrate Christmas, but also Epiphany and the baptism of Lord Jesus.

Spas soup ©

During the week preceding these celebrations, devoted Armenians fast; hence Khetum, or Armenian Christmas Eve dinner is a light menu, easy on the stomach after a week of fasting. A richer dinner is prepared on Christmas day.

Wheat pudding ©Armenian on web

Christmas Eve dinner (January 5th) includes traditional dishes such as tanapur or spas (yogurt and wheat/barley soup, fish which is the symbol of Christianity, nevik (Swiss chard and chickpeas), dried fruits and nuts, desserts like sharots (whole shelled walnuts threaded on a string and encased in grape jelly) and anoushabour (pudding made from wheat, berries and apricots) and of course wine. The recipes may vary among families and regions.

Sharot threads and dried fruits in a local market – Armenia ©

On Christmas day, other traditional Armenian dishes will be prepared for dinner such as itch (bulgur salad also known as Armenian tabbouleh), sou boreg, stuffed carrots, soujouk and basterma (two types of sausages) and mezze etc. Lebanese Armenians may add to their dinner table Lebanese food like hommous, tabbouleh and other.

Shnorhavor Amanor yev Surb Tznund!

Soujouk slices and hommous (picture taken at Varouj restaurant, Beirut)

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