By Howie Kahn
Savor the variety of the season with traditional holiday dishes from around the world.
Mushroom soup with zarashka eaten in Russia during the holidays.
Long before you sit down to Christmas dinner in Ethiopia, preparations are under way. Farmers buy lambs early to fatten them up for yebeg wot, the thick, buttery berbere-spiced stew that locals know and expect.
Slideshow: Traditional Holiday Foods
After all, holiday meals are judged by a different set of standards than any other kind. You may like your dish dry because that's what pleased you as a child. Memory is the juicier thing. Such sentimentality is a shared global matter, but food traditions are decidedly local-and reveal much about a destination.
Slideshow: America's Best Pies
The same old, same old won't necessarily be available abroad, so if you're leaving home for the holidays, embrace the opportunity to savor the season as celebrated in another part of the world. Every place has specialties, prepared with love and idiosyncrasies similar to your own.
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