Sunday, 18 December 2011

A Quick Christmas Giveaway! (It's chocolate! and it's our first!)

Hi All!

I am very excited to announce our blog's very first quick GIVEAWAY!

We're in the final stretch - less than one week until Christmas! And there is still so much to do, and so much fun to be had in the kitchen!

The wonderful Steven and Andy (and Kuro the cat!), who have recently taken over your one-stop cruelty-free online shopping destination The Vegan Store, have ever so kindly donated a christmas rice-milk chocolate gift pack for us to give away to one lucky Australian reader (sorry, overseas readers!).

If you haven't tried rice-milk chocolate, you are in for a treat.. It's a perfectly, light, sweet complement to dark chocolate. And because it's made of pure, simple ingredients, it's all organic, fair-trade, soy-free, dairy-free and gluten-free! Perfect for a Christmas present (or for you to eat while wrapping Christmas presents!!)

To enter the giveaway:
All you need to do is contact us (as below) and leave a comment, answering my question.. so here it is:  
What is your favourite Christmas tradition?  
You'll also need to Direct Message us on Twitter straight away after you enter at @mattheworbit or @jameshultgren, or contact us by email so that we can contact you first thing Tuesday morning to get your address and arrange shipping. 

You'll need to be quick, as due to shipping cut-offs as this busy time of year, we are closing this competition at midnight, Monday 19 December 2011. You'll also need to be able to send me your address first thing Tuesday morning if you are the winner, otherwise I will need to randomly select another winner.

The winner will be randomly selected (using from the comments on this post.

My Christmas tradition is to make lasagne. Every year, without fail, I make a really decadent, rich, huge lasagne, from Nonna's Italian Kitchen by Bryanna Clark Grogan. It's made of number of components (as most of the best recipes are) - an almond parmesan, a soy or cashew-cream based bechamel, and a soy or seitan-based ragu. The ragu needs to simmer for 2 hours, but by gosh, it's worth it. The whole house smells fantastic, and you can taste the layers of complexity building in the sauces over time, ingredient by ingredient (like a mad scientist) as the sauces cook down. Mmmm. The only problem is making enough, as everyone who tastes it wants seconds, without fail! 

Merry Christmas everyone, and good luck. Please share this post with your friends, so as many people have a chance as possible to enter this quick giveaway! Also, thank you so much to the gentlemen at The Vegan Store for kindly offering us this gift pack to give away!

Update: Entries to the giveaway are now closed. Congratulations to rhubarbwine, number 5, who selected as the winner (and also made me laugh with her entry!) Thank you all so much for entering, retweeting, and getting the word out about our first giveaway. And thank you for all your sweet Christmas traditions (and not-sweet ones!!). You've all made both of us smile, and warmed my usually non-hugely-christmassy heart.


  1. I read my little sister (she is now 20)the night before xmas, it started as a child and just never stopped. Its quite funny now that she is an adult!

  2. Christmas was always and still is a day set around relaxing and feasting. We set the table full of food in the morning then lounge around, watch b grade movies they show on the tv and nap throughout the day. It is incredibly simple but total bliss.

  3. We have so many Christmas traditions and I'm loving watching my boys continue with them now they have their own homes. My fave though is decorating the tree and drinking egg nog on first Sunday in December. It sets the beginning for a month of Christmas fun.

  4. I love putting the christmas music on - jingle bells, a little "I'm dreaming of a white christmas" because I am and cooking so the smells go throughout the house. Of course a christmas cookie and a cup of something yummy helps with the finishing cooking touches before the family and friends arrive

  5. My traditions? I have 3.
    A: Panicking because I am otally disorganised, despite my promise to self that this year I would be relaxed and organise a cool yule; B: Stressed, because I have to go to the shop *again* to get nuts/chocolate/butter/milk when I thought I had more than enough but hadn't counted on 10 hungry teenaged boys pillaging the pantry; and C: mildly hysterical because I can't find the bottle opener for 20 minutes, remember it's in the camper trailer, take an hour to hitch the camper trailer to the car and back it out of the garage to pop up the top and locate the bottle opener, put it all back and then discover the wine is a screw top bottle and it's gone warm in the process.

    Happy Christmas - ho ho ho :)

  6. Having worked in retail for a number of years now, my favourite tradition over Christmas is simply to have a rare day off! Cooking up a storm with my mother for the whole family (including lemon pots with gingernut crumble this year!) and resting up before the craziness of boxing day sales is something I truly have come to treasure.

  7. A nice glass of red at the stroke of 8:00... in the morning. Not coincidentally, the only day of the year that I'll succumb to the siren song of the goddess Nap.

  8. I remember waking up early cos all our family would come to our place for lunch. I wanted so badly to help mum in the kitchen by putting all the roast veggies into the numerous fry pans that were going ........ she insisted that I swept the front verandah instead! No one really entered thru the front door and I thought it was the crappiest job in the world .... I do look back and chuckle tho!

  9. We didn't really do Xmas in my family, but an established tradition from teenagerdom was to watch the Xmas episode of a very odd British sitcom called Nightingales, which I would describe in detail but is somewhat indescribable - other than it involves Harold Pinter and the Pope on a bicycle and a woman called Mary giving birth to golf clubs and a pool table.

    And then on Xmas morning I usually watch the Rocky Horror Picture Show.

    But my favourite Xmas tradition, that I've had for a few years now, is making and wrapping gingerbread for my family of friends (all together now: awwwwwww :P)

  10. My Xmas tradition - egg nog, egg nog, egg nog!! That is all.

  11. Every Xmas eve, the three of us (Mum, Dad and daughter) choose one present under the tree to open. It is solemn and special, and we can get to sleep before Santa gets here because our curiosity has been soothed by choosing the most mysterious present to open. It is time away from TV, phones, computers, noise. Just face to face with no distractions, showing gratitude and love.

  12. Our family Christmas tradition is jersey caramel lollies, without fail - which everyone eats loads of til we all feel sick. I never eat them besides Christmas time. And at lunch time we always have cold ham and salads, and for some reason, tinned asparagus. So weird.

    My new tradition is baking vegan brownies to bribe bloggers with so that I win chocolate give aways, just FYI ;-)

  13. My family always drink alot, dance badly and have a fabulous time! That's what it's all about right?!

  14. Thanks so much - I can't believe I won the chocolate. A great big public thank you to here and on my blog. x


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