Marilynn Shcolnik of Snohomish County, Washington, shared photos of awe-inspiring gingerbread houses from the 19th annual Gingerbread Village fundraiser in Seattle. The creations are all made by architects partnering with hotel chefs, to benefit the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation Northwest chapter. The theme this year was “Holiday Express.”
Is there a food that makes the holidays bright in your home? We want to hear all about it. Immortalize your food tradition in words, recipes, pictures or video, submit it as an iReport and we'll show off some of our favorites on CNN's Eatocracy food blog through the end of the holiday season.
Growing up with an Italian grandmother, Christmas meant befana cookies. My Nonna would make these anise treats every December. Italian legend has La Befana as a good witch in the style of Santa Claus, but for some reason in my family, befana became the name for Christmas cookies.
Nonna would make enough befana cookies to fill a glass jar that was about two feet tall. She would store them on the stairs leading to the attic with a piece of bread on top to keep out any moisture. I grew up in Vermont and I remember the cold as you would try to sneak a cookie. Of course, Nonna would catch me - the powdered sugar on top of the cookie made it very obvious.
My Nonna passed away in November of 2001 and unfortunately, no one in the family had learned how to make the befana cookies. Thus, my younger brother has spent the last eight years trying to perfect the recipe and seems to have come as close to Nonna's as possible.
There's a reason that iReporter Chris Morrow is considered a superstar around these parts. Not only does she file sumptuous reports from all over the country - she also scores interviews with tip-top talent like the hosts of NBC's "The Sing Off."
Morrow asked Nick Lachey, Ben Folds and Shawn Stockman our favorite question at this time of year, "Finish the sentence, 'It's not the holidays without...'" and got answers ranging from eggnog to...well, you'll just have to watch. And drool. And go make chicken. (You'll see.)
Our favorite question to ask folks at this time of year how they'd finish the sentence, "It's not Thanksgiving without..."
Wolf Blitzer, Candy Crowley, John King and Soledad O'Brien share the dishes that make their holidays shine bright.