Cooking Channel Talents' Funniest Family Holiday Traditions or Memories
One of our talent's family keeps a bed by the dinner table during the holidays so they can just roll back and go to sleep after the feast.
Photo By: Emile Wamsteker ©2014, Cooking Channel, LLC. All Rights Reserved.
I can tell you a pretty famous one in our family. One year, I was hosting for my family and my ovens broke! Thankfully, our next-door neighbor was out of town, but the houseguest was there and she wasn't cooking. So I literally schlepped everything from their kitchen to our kitchen getting everything ready. And I gave them a ton of leftovers, since it would be weird to have a random person at our table.
We always do the white elephant party where friends and family gather and everybody brings a gag gift, or sometimes it’s a nice gift, and they go under the tree. And everybody takes a number and you go in order and you pick a gift and you don't want to be first, because if you’re first and you get a great gift, everybody else gets an opportunity to steal from you!
When I was really young, my YOLO uncle –– the coolest dude alive –– was Santa. He rented a Santa suit just for fun. He was leaving a couple days later for a year and said to my grandma, "Just bring back the suit to the place I rented it." Next Christmas rolls up and my grandma’s like: “Oh, I have something in the car ... here's your Santa suit." And my uncle lost it. He lost his mind. It was the best Christmas ever.
Probably the dessert competition. Most of the time we try to figure out who made the best red velvet cake, peach cobbler or apple pie. The funniest moments are when we sit around the table and watch people eat them and everyone kinda plays MasterChef judge. It's usually between 20 and 30 of us. I don't cook on holidays. There are too many other people that can cook, and it's my time to be off.
Debi + Gabriele
(Gabriele) Every year we go for a walk in Santa Barbara, try to wake up early and don't make New Year's resolutions. For Christmas we have the Italian pandoro — my favorite is Bauli — and by March I'm still eating it.
(Debi) Every New Year's Eve we have to buy each other a little red sexy thing. He gets me a little G-string. And you have to wear it on New Year's Eve and then you take it off at the end!
My grandmother did this because there weren’t enough seats in her apartment — not enough chairs. She would drag a little daybed to the side of the foldout metal table. And my father liked sitting on that, even though that was where the kids generally sat, because then once you were done eating, all you would do is you just sort of roll back and go to sleep right away. You actually didn't have to get up to move anywhere to nap.
My family has a mock Thanksgiving every year. We love Thanksgiving so much we have it twice! And the real reason that this tradition started was because I grew up where my mom's extended family and my dad's extended family both lived in the same town, so it was always hard to decide, "Where we are we going for Christmas and Thanksgiving this year?" So we ended up starting Mock Thanksgiving so we could have Thanksgiving with both families and then it's sort of evolved over the years.