January 6th..Little Christmas..




Christmas 2018 (11)









6th January… In Ireland, this is the day that the Christmas decorations traditionally come down – never a cause for celebration, in my book – as kids we knew in our hearts that Christmas was indeed gone for another year, and that the new school term was only round the corner..

My Mother called this day ‘ Little Christmas’, and we always had an especially nice dinner and one of the half-dozen Christmas puddings that she made each year – served with caster sugar and whipped cream, since you’re asking – none of that oul Brandy Butter or Custard nonsense..


It’s also the Feast of the Epiphany – the day the Three Wise men arrived at Bethlehem.

Another name for this day is Nollaig na mBan, or  ‘The Womens’  Christmas’  – Apparently, this was the day when women did no work at home, and went out to socialise with their mothers, sisters, aunts and friends. Sounds like a great idea, and certainly it’s still very popular in various parts of Ireland. But not this year, right?

Anyway, enough history – today I hit the ground running – by early lunchtime, I’ll have  brought all the boxes back in from the garage and – hopefully – have started to pulling apart my lovingly constructed Christmas House. Even though it was only us who saw it this year!

Christmas cake decorations

Farewell, Christmas Cookie cutters!!


Back to the bookshelf for you, my Christmas cookbooks!








However, this is not a tale of sparkly things, ripped from their rightful place and banished to the black hole that is my garage (and my garage is, seriously, a black hole), but rather of most of it being banished etc., but some of it being reprieved – those fake candles, and the fairy lights that switch themselves on for 6 hours every evening, and turn themselves off for the rest of the time – I just couldn’t let them go into that darkness..

So this evening I have a couple of candles flickering gently in carefully chosen spots – the trick is to put them in places where they don’t look fake – like lanterns and jars, but you knew that already didn’t you?

My gesture to the Hygge trend  -and it was a minimal gesture, consisting mostly of a Swedish-themed throw over the back of the sofa – turned out to be much appreciated by the cats, so the cosy fleecy throws have remained, with a promise to myself that they (and the poor old cats) will be properly evicted when Spring  finally arrives.


So, most of my seasonal treasures are enjoying their well-earned slumbers, but a little bit of Christmas remains – with hopes of a more ‘usual’ Christmas time next year..

The evenings are getting brighter by the day – only by a minute or so – it’s still time for cosy food, but Spring is on its way!

Happy 6th January! :)


I started writing down recipes in an old copybook when I was about 16. With 6 children at home, my Mother was always glad of a hand in the kitchen, and really allowed us to experiment - as long as we washed up afterwards, and left the kitchen immaculate! Having a tidy kitchen has followed me through my life, as has the habit of writing down my favourite recipes; except that these days I write them for my website, and add photographs when I can. The website really started when it occurred to me that my daughter might like to have these recipes when I've forgotten them. In my early days of cooking for family and friends, I used to phone my Mum all the time to ask her for the recipe for some of our favourite family dinners. She rarely had a recipe to hand - I think, like me, she made a lot of it up as she went along.. So welcome to Eating for Ireland - these are the recipes that my friends and family having been eating these past 40 years.. yes, I truly am ancient! They are tried and tested, and have worked for me for all that time - I have updated them as new ingredients became available - I really hope you'll find something that you can make into a family favourite of your own. You don't have to tell anyone where you found these great new dishes that you're serving up - it can be our little secret, but I'd really love it if you could give me a sneaky 'follow' on Facebook and Instagram.. So off you go - have a good rummage around, you're bound to find something new! My sincere thanks to all of you who have found a recipe that you liked and dropped me a line to tell me - I really do love to hear from you! Happy Cooking! Becks xx

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