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Seasonal Recipes, Winter 2012_2013

Featuring Christmas Eve, 2012

IMG_7260We Gather

Winter is a time for gathering around fires and sharing long, interesting stories. It is a time for sustaining and warming meals and drinks. We take more time to conjure special meals and layer flavors to be savored. It’s a time for traditions, new and old. New England Holidays in Winter seem especially receptive to all these things.

Continuing the theme of holiday dinners, I will present, in some detail, the making and presentation of this year’s Christmas Eve Dinner at home with family. Please join us!

I decided this year to focus my efforts on h’ordeuvres and dessert and keep the main meal simple, just 3 basic items, meat, veggies and stuffing.


Nibbles for munching while visiting and sharing gifts:

Roasted Red Pepper Hummus
Cabot Sharp Cheddar Cheese Ball
Jumbo Ripe Olives
Dilly Beans from our Garden
Assorted Crackers, Pretzels and Chips
Grapes and other fresh fruit
Roast Cashews
Hot Mulled Wine

IMG_7234Hot Mulled Wine

Our Main Christmas Eve Meal consisted of:

Rolled, Stuffed Pork Roast
Gravy made from Pan Juice and Cider
Roasted Root Veggies with Herbs
Wild and Brown Rice and Barley Stuffing
Woodinville Red Wine, Indomitable 2009
Cranberry Wine from Boynton Valley Winery in Vermont

IMG_7255Rolled Pork Roast and Roasted Vegetables

Roasted Root Vegetables
Each vegetable was roasted individually with olive oil and its own herb(s), then all were tossed together at the end with a bit of sea salt. This was the basic plan; red potatoes with dill and rosemary, sweet potatoes with basil, carrots with thyme, parsnips with parsley and ground celery, and red onion wedges by themselves.

Happy Endings Dessert:

Gingerbread Cake with Chopped Crystallized Ginger, Cherries and Dark Chocolate
Ginger Hard Sauce
Maple Cream Whiskey and assorted other Whiskies
Cinnamon Coffee

IMG_7264Gingerbread and Ginger Hard Sauce

Ginger Hard Sauce

1/2 cup butter at room temperature
1 cup sifted confectioner’s sugar
1/2 cup Ginger Brandy or Gingerbread Liquor

Beat all together until very creamy, transfer to a serving dish

This is the Roast Veggies and Pork Roast in the Making:

IMG_7215Crushed Garlic, Herbs and Fresh Spinach Layer

IMG_7216Sun Dried Tomatoes, Swiss Cheese, Olive Oil and Crushed Pecans Layer

IMG_7217Rolled, Tied and Scored with Herb Blend on Top and Fruit Wine Below

IMG_7248Hot from the Oven

IMG_7211Prepping the Veggies

IMG_7214Roasting the Veggies

New England Cream Whiskey

Maple Syrup, dark                                          ½ – 1 cup
Almond Extract                                              ¼ to ½ tsp
Vanilla Extract                                                ½ to 1 tsp.
Half and Half or Light Cream                         1 qt.
Heavy Cream                                                 2 cups
New England Maple Whiskey                        1 -2 cups, to taste

Blend all together in a blender for one minute until well blended. Blend just before serving. Transfer to an appropriate serving vessel.
IMG_7273It was Goooooood……
Thanks for joining us.
Merry and Peaceful Holidays and a White Christmas to All!