Christmas Dinner

December 26th

My first attempt cooking Christmas dinner for my family was a success; delivering it 45 miles away and serving the food warm was a different story. I prepared the food at my house but we ate at my grandparent’s home on the other side of town. We ended up microwaving plates before sitting down.
Someday I’ll have a home large enough to accomodate everyone, including enough silverware and the such to cook and feed everyone in the same locale. In the meantime, delivery service it is.

Pumpkin chestnut soup

Round two of the pumpkin chestnut soup. I enjoyed it just as much the second time I prepared it in the same week, and keeping it warm in a Crockpot was genius. My girlfriends are so smart.

Squash poppy seed rolls

Squash poppy seed rolls. I know? Can you believe it? I get all gutsy after one good loaf of baked bread and starting going wild and crazy with seeds and rolls and guess what? They weren’t bakery quality, but they were still good.

Garlic green beans with pine nuts

Garlic green beans with pine nuts. Easy peasy.

Garlic and horseradish mashed taters

Garlic mashed taters with a side of horseradish. Also pretty darn easy, although I need a masher. I had to use a pastry cutter and they were lumpy.

Jalapeno orange cranberry relish

Orange jalapeno cranberry relish. There was just enough kick to make it spicy and sweet.

Cauliflower thyme gratin

Cauliflower gratin with thyme and ham. Took less than 20 minute to prepare and was a big hit.

My first bird

My mom bought me a roasting pan for Christmas and it came in handy! My first bird, and she was a beauty. Again, the folks at Cooks Illustrated know what they are talking about. Their November/December 2007 issue had a great article on roasting turkey breast and I followed it to the t. It worked well.

My grandfather's coconut cream pie

Coconut cream pie, my grandpa’s fave. This pie is a huge pain in the ass to bake — taking 2+ hours just for the filling. Thankfully, I only do this once a year and he was tickled pink to see and eat it.

Peppermint brownies

Peppermint brownies, to get rid of my growing stash of candy canes.

And to all, a good night!

Posted in
Domestic Art, Journal, June Cleaver
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15 Responses

  1. Everything looks delicious, good for you! We are the host next year for the gathering of the family, I am already thinking … 🙂

  2. It all looks sooo yummy!
    Great job!

  3. You used your pastry cutter to mash your potatoes!?! Honey, you must have some pretty strong arms!! Sounds like a great time and everything looks delicious – especially those squash poppy seed rolls! Great job Kelli!!

  4. Mmmm mmmm good! It all looks delicious. Do you have an electric mixer? That’s how I mash my taters. Not that I go around mashing taters with much frequency, but when I do, I use an electric hand mixer.

  5. SMOOTH mashed potatoes? Bleck!

  6. Don’t buy a masher! Get a ricer! After using a potato masher for several years, my husband and I decided to follow Jeffrey Steingarten’s recommendation and bought a potato ricer. Steingarten writes that with a masher, you process the potatoes repeatedly, which breaks too many cell walls, thus releasing too much starch and creating gummy potatoes. With a ricer, you process the potatoes just once, which separates (rather than ruptures) the cells and results in smooth, not-gummy potatoes. (If you want more info on this, read his book “The Man Who Ate Everything.”)

    I’m not a huge fan of kitchen unitaskers. But wow, a potato ricer is a device that does pretty much just one thing but does it better than anything else.

  7. What a spread! Next year, I want to do Christmas with your family 🙂

    As for the potatoes, I don’t think they are good unless there are lumps. It’s like the difference between al dente pasta and mushy pasta. The first thanksgiving I had at a friend’s house, where they whipped their potatoes, I felt like I was eating those spuds that come from a box. yick.

  8. Ditto on the ricer…. Dang, nice work cara.

  9. Everything looks incredibly delicious!


  10. Yum! You did all of that yourself? I am impressed!!

  11. Glad everything turned out great! And ITA the crockpot is a godsend!

  12. don’t you love cooks illustrated? that same issues has a spice cake with cream cheese frosting…it rocks!

  13. Aloha, Kelli…..the meal sounds fantastic and such a huge undertaking to be your first complete Christmas dinner to cook for the family…..You are a brave soul!
    Good job!!!

  14. Great job Kelli! Everything looks and sounds delicious. Hope you had a wonderful time with your family.

    I am a huge fan of Cook’s Illustated. In case you are npot aware, they have annual cookbooks. EWach oine has a full years worth of their magazines all in one. There great, and you have every issue of CI and they are much more convient to use. Articles are included.

    Best wishes for 2008!

  15. looks very yummy! Where was the cauliflower recipe from? I think I have to have some : )