Cookies and Culture

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Skye Curren, Reporter
@esccourant

Every year as the holiday season begins, it’s a holiday tradition that students spend time with their families baking. Holiday baking is a tradition that almost everyone has, whether it be making sugar cookies or cinnamon rolls.

Senior Leigh Charlton makes sure to bake every holiday season. “I make a huge batch of cookie dough at once and then I freeze it, so I can just make them through the whole month of December,” Leigh said.

One of the highlights of Leigh’s holiday baking is that she gets to spend time with her family. “It’s really fun,” 

Ellie Grogan shows off the pan for her cinnamon rolls. Photo by Skye Curren.

Leigh said. “We really like baking and sometimes we watch holiday baking championship on the Food Network.”

Freshmen Ellie Grogan also has baking traditions with her family. “Every Christmas we make cinnamon rolls,” Ellie said. “They’re either my grandmother’s or great grandmother’s recipe, I’m not exactly sure,” she said.

Ellie continues baking at the holidays because of tradition. “Since it was my grandmother’s recipe it’s really about keeping the family traditions alive for further generations,” Ellie said. “It’s really keeps her spirit alive because she’s not alive anymore, but her traditions will always live on. And they’re just very good,” she said.

Sophomore Michelle Gachelin makes festive puff pastry pies every year. “I think that spending time with family is the main reason why these traditions live on. Because if I was just doing this by myself, it wouldn’t be as much fun and I wouldn’t be able to share it with anyone else,” she said. “I think doing it with your family helps make traditions more special.”

Isabela Montano uses different tool every holiday season to bake. Photo by Skye Curren.

Michelle also said, “We have traditional recipes – like every Christmas we make my aunts pecan pie. Which is like a mini pie, with a brownie in it, and then pecans on top.”

Senior Isabela Montano, also involves family in her holiday traditions. “It’s the only time my family and I get together because sometimes during the holidays some people, part of their traditions would be setting up a Christmas tree,” Isabela said. “In my family sometimes we can’t get together to set up the tree. It’s the baking of this traditional food that’s the only time we get together,” she said.

Isabela’s family is Filipino, so her traditions vary from the Americanized ones. “Every Christmas you go to midnight mass. So at 4 am, nine nights in a row, you go to mass.” Isabela also talked about a traditional Filipino food eaten every day called a bibingka, which is, “a rice cake, but instead of eating on a plate, you eat in on a banana leaf,” Isabela said. “When I came here, to America, my family started baking it in a pan. And instead of going to mass, every midnight we just eat it.”

Freshmen Ashley Ruth stresses the importance of having company while she makes sugar cookies every year. “It’s important to do it with other people because two years ago I made them by myself and it was very lonely,” Ashley said. “So it’s important to it with other people and share that experience and really celebrate together.”

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