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Holiday Specials

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
Tis the season to be slaving in the kitchen. I use to do a large assortment of cookies (shortbread, linzors, ginger snaps, almond balls, and some highly boozed up truffles, if theres time, I may even do some orange ginger biscotti) then wrap then in cello bags and give them out, or mainly, mom giving them out to her co-workers. But with my kitchen still out of order and finding myself being busier then ever before, I doubt I'll get a chance to do 1/3 of what I use to.

I may end up just doing mom's old Grand Marnier pound cake and maybe my new Honey Apple Pie (replacing the sugar with the apple filling with honey basically, turns out quite nice). If I hit my other side of my family, I may end up doing a bunch of creme brulee for my cousin, just found out shes addicted to the stuff.

Anyone do anything special just for the holidays?
post #2 of 11
Yes, I'm now in the cookie business.

At my daughter's wedding this summer, we had the traditional Italian wedding cookie assortment.........our cookie table was 24+ feet long, and stacked. It must have really left an impression.

So, I got one phone call from a group that normally had a cookie exchange wanting to know if I would put a cookie assortment of 6 dozen per each together for them as they are so busy this year. Which sounded do able as the effort would cover my personal baking. That was the first 78 dozen. Small town, news travels fast. I'm now doing 230 dozen.

I'm not a baker.....I'm a cook. I'm afraid to answer the phone anymore.
post #3 of 11
Well after a couple weeks of heavy medications I've finally been able to get some things done. The canning is done. Not the amount I wanted to do but just enough to hit the family, a couple neighbors and a few close (but far away distance wise friends. Yeah that means you ol' DMT. Hehehe) Anyhow, Apple Jack BBQ, Maple Chipotle Pepper Glaze and a Blood Orange and Peach Chutney. Only a dozen or so jars of each but a task none the less.

Tomorrow we have a Chrismas time Brunch at our neighbors across the street. Thert're doing all the food yet I threw down the "Italian Card" and insisted bringing something. So I get I'm making Grand Mimosas and some Chocolate Truffles. There'll be a mixture of some rolled in either coco powder, Macadamia nuts and pulverized Toffee. Just finished making that.

Christmas Eve will be Hodedos. Home-made Pizza, a couple dips, a nice anti pasto platter and maybe some fresh veggies. We have a local couple that has seemed to adopt us coming over.

Christmas Day dinner will be the big one. Same couple will be over for dinner and we have extended open invitations to a few other folks but they will probably be over for cocktails in the evening. Anyhow the menu goes like this.

Caesar Salad, Standing Rib Roast with Glace de Viande and sauteed mushrooms, Potato, roasted tomato and Chevre Galettes, Sauteed artichokes in Tarragon compound butter (originally planned greenbeans but found some nice fresh chokes at the store), Braised Cabbage, Makers Mark Mashed sweet potatoes, sauteed squash, fresh bread. Dessert is whatever our guests wish to bring so.....

The meal is almost complete. I've been able to make a dish or two a day for the last week. Utilizing that FoodSaver and the Sous Vide procedure. About all that can be expected of me give some of my limitations. All that's left is the Galettes, Beef and Bread for the Day and Pizza for the Eve. Got help now so it's gonna be a breeze.

This sure the heck beats last year when we were waiting for our furniture to arrive and were forced to eat Frozen Lasagne and store bought fix'ns. What else could we do but punt. Good thing too this year is we don't have to paint the diningroom and our DD's bedroom or clean the 14 months of "vacant house gunk" that we bought with the house. That was our activity last Christmas:suprise:.

Merry Christmas all!!!!!!!
post #4 of 11
Well, Joe-

I hope you are better and well-recovered with your "heavy medications."

Best wshes for a Merry Christmas and a Happy New year! Sounds like you're back at the stove with pretty good energy. I'm glad to hear it.

Mike :bounce:
travelling gourmand
travelling gourmand
post #5 of 11
Thread Starter 
I hate this, I wound up working during the Xmas week...no baking for me. I'm just gonna do stuffing for Christmas dinner, hopefully I can get out by 2pm.
post #6 of 11
Hey Mike! How's that ham looking????? I was gonna follow what you were doing and ham was the original choice this year too. Just didn't work out that way. They ran out before I could get there. Doohhh!!!!!:suprise:

Shame to hear you got saddled with extra shifts there Headless!
post #7 of 11

Too early to tell. As I have told here, the Cape Girardeau source of my Missouri country hams for twenty or so years abruptly went out of business, and after some Internet thrashing around, I got a cooked Kentucky country ham (which ain't usually too shabby) which I will warm tomorrow, skin, score, and prepare for reheating on Christmas day.

-Put a clove in each score diamond, slather with mustard-brown sugar-orange juice topping, and warm up well for dinner. I'm hoping for the best, and I will let you know how it turns out.

Funny coincidence- several weeks ago at the local Home Foods I encountered a nice young man who was promoting samples of his family's grass-fed beef. His literature said it was Aberdeen Angus and from Missouri. I asked... where?

He said a town near Cape - I said my father grew up on a farm in Jackson, just up the road from Cape, and my uncle was VERY big in the Angus show cattle circuit.

He knew my uncle.

I asked him if he was aware that Esicar's Smoke House in Cape had just closed, screwing up my Christmas ham plans. He gave me a funny look and said his family was in negotiations to buy Esicar's. I told him he had just found a customer if they got it going again. :roll:

Small world.

Merry Christmas Joe, and I hope you have a happy and healthy New Year!

travelling gourmand
travelling gourmand
post #8 of 11
wow Esicar has got a reputation....one of my shroom buddies gets his bacon from them.
my pigs come from Heinkebein in Cape G......
there's a grassfed beef operation getting alot of PR in the area from Cape, American Grassfed, they sell on line, have their own processing plant.
Just very active.

Funny, a reporter called this week to ask if I'd heard of the Hammer's up in STL County selling organic beef. Apparently they have 90 acres in the city that their raising beef on.....sign out by the road.....living in the 1849 farm house.....gotta love these people.

oh yeah, what are we making for Christmas....just finished a couple of sheet pans of buche d'noel with cherry pastry cream, whipped cream and chocolate butter cream....
tons of tree sugar cookies, 6 kinds of marshmallows, spicy gingersnaps, etc.....not made english toffee nor fudge nor pecan balls in powdered sugar....all personal favorites, probably a good thing not having them around. Got blk raspberry jam, strawberry jam and a mixed berry jam that will be gifted out to relatives and jam loving friends.
Doing alot of Sckoinog (sp?) hot choc, mallows, mug, baskets for Christmas this year.....
cooking with all your senses.....
cooking with all your senses.....
post #9 of 11

Chistmas tradition

As long as I can remember ( I'm well into my fifties, now ) Christmas dinner means time for lutefisk. At our house, it's served in a white sauce over mashed potatoes, along with swedish meatballs, brown beans in a sweet and sour sauce, and swedish rye bread. For the uninitiated, lutefisk is dried codfish rehydrated by soaking in a lye solution and cooked by poaching in salted water. The end result being what I can only describe as chunks of fish flavored jell-o Mmmm mmmm good.:crazy:
post #10 of 11
I've made macaroons and honey blondies for my family this season. They are very easy to make and the ingredients come in cheap. hihi They really enjoy what I bake and, for me, seeing them enjoy the food makes me very contented and happy. I know you're feeling a bit sad because you wouldnt be doing much cooking because of what happened to your kitchen. I know you can find other ways to show the Christmas spirit. :D
Who doesn't love to cook?
Who doesn't love to cook?
post #11 of 11
It is a British tradition to make Christmas cakes on Stir up Sunday (last Sunday before Advent) - I then 'feed' them with booze until the weekend before Christmas when I put on the marzipan and royal icing. I also make my Christmas puddings at the same time, along with the Black Bun, a cake-y type of treat, specifically baked for Hogmanay, the Scottish BIG festival of the year.

I bake mincepies on Christmas eve - enough for the Christmas holidays and then make traditional Scottish shortbread for Hogmanay a couple of days before the event.
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