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What's for Dinner #262 Sing Nowel! Edition (through 24 December 2013)

roxlet Dec 18, 2013 05:18 PM

As we get ever closer to Christmas, in my house it's a toss up between baking and holiday prep work, and dinner. Tonight's dinner was a quick one -- a marinara with pieces of mozzarella served with grilled chicken breast. I had been baking all day, and that was absolutely all I had the energy for.

How is the season affecting the meals you're making?

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  1. steve h. RE: roxlet Dec 18, 2013 05:28 PM

    Christmas Eve/Day menus are still being negotiated between my wife and son. Both are excellent cooks.

    In broad strokes, the night of December 24 will be seafood, Christmas Day will be a roast. It's all the excruciating details that need to be hammered out.

    Merry Christmas, all!

    1. Cherylptw RE: roxlet Dec 18, 2013 05:51 PM

      It's not really affecting my meals; I'm going away for the holidays and this year, I'm not decorating and I'm only buying 4 gifts. I've got two down. Normally, I'd be beating down the doors of retailers. I will be baking & cooking meals next week when I get to my destination, but right now, I'm just trying to get my house straight before I leave.

      Tonight I made beef & venison chili: dried chiles, tomato sauce & paste, pinto beans, garlic, bell peppers, onion & other spices all simmered together. A side of fluffy biscuits. That's it.

      7 Replies
      1. re: Cherylptw
        steve h. RE: Cherylptw Dec 18, 2013 05:53 PM

        That's a handsome bowl. Well done.

        1. re: steve h.
          Cherylptw RE: steve h. Dec 19, 2013 06:35 PM

          Thanks...that's an honor coming from you....

        2. re: Cherylptw
          suzigirl RE: Cherylptw Dec 18, 2013 06:04 PM

          I could go for a bowl of that chili. It is chilly here today for a change of pace. That would warm you from the inside out

          1. re: Cherylptw
            scubadoo97 RE: Cherylptw Dec 21, 2013 04:59 AM

            great looking chili

            1. re: scubadoo97
              Cherylptw RE: scubadoo97 Dec 21, 2013 06:12 PM

              Thanks :-)

            2. re: Cherylptw
              MamasCooking RE: Cherylptw Dec 21, 2013 08:32 AM

              Cheryl......if you ever plan on visiting N. California you are one Chowhound I would love to get together and cook and dine with! You got skills:) Do you cook professionally may I ask?

              1. re: MamasCooking
                Cherylptw RE: MamasCooking Dec 21, 2013 06:18 PM

                Thank you; I'd love to get together and chat, cook, and eat. I'm just a home cook that have learned a lot over the years from professional friends. I also use every opportunity I can to cook for other people and I'm a competition cook; recipe/cooking contesting is my hobby so I'm always writing and testing recipes. Plus I have southern genes running through my veins so cooking just comes naturally for me.

            3. Njchicaa RE: roxlet Dec 18, 2013 05:55 PM

              Tonight was leftover meatballs/sauce and a pre-assembled pan of baked ziti topped with fresh mozz that I made on Sunday.

              Tomorrow's dinner will be defrosted beef bourguignon over rice for us and a grilled chicken breast with leftover ziti for our nephew. I think red meat with lots of red wine and mushrooms would be pushing it with him at this point.

              1. foodieX2 RE: roxlet Dec 18, 2013 06:23 PM

                I posted another thread on home cooking that I think I must have been drunk when I offered to host my husband's brothers and kids on Friday night and then a brunch for family/friends on Sunday! Feeling a tad overwhelmed with food prep, working all the time and getting everything ready for christmas. GAH. But spending the time with family and friends will be worth it.

                Dinner tonight was very simple, tortellini tossed with garlic/oil and leftover broccoli rabe.

                Tomorrow will be clean out the fridge night to make room for weekend food prep.

                Once I get thru the weekend I'll worry about christmas eve/day. We are pretty traditional so don't see either causing too much stress, thank goodness.

                1. LindaWhit RE: roxlet Dec 18, 2013 06:36 PM

                  It'll just be me and Mom for Christmas dinner, and I don't do all of the baking that I used to. My only decorating is a string of icicle lights in the sliding door window in my living room. I didn't even unpack the Charlie Brown Christmas tree I bought, nor did I pull out the CVS Island of Misfit Toys. I think I'm Bah-Humbugging this year.

                  24 Replies
                  1. re: LindaWhit
                    suzigirl RE: LindaWhit Dec 18, 2013 06:43 PM

                    It seems you aren't the only one Bah-Humbugging. Several clients aren't putting up the decorations, my tree hasn't gone up and i still have yet to finish shopping or baking. I feel your pain.

                    1. re: LindaWhit
                      steve h. RE: LindaWhit Dec 18, 2013 06:47 PM

                      That's just wrong.

                      I bought our tree today, a big-bottom example, and a gaggle of poinsettias. The trees have shrunk in recent years keeping pace with my dotage.

                      If not for mom or yourself, you owe it to the cats. Kitty mischief is cool

                      Edited to add: a vintage port is cool, too.

                      Merry Christmas!

                      1. re: steve h.
                        suzigirl RE: steve h. Dec 18, 2013 06:53 PM

                        Kitty mischief is why the tree hasn't gone up yet. The maniacs can't handle the responsibility. It is a ball to watch but the aftermath can be a bitch.

                        1. re: suzigirl
                          steve h. RE: suzigirl Dec 18, 2013 07:00 PM

                          That's the price of poker.

                          Mr. Hobbes was pretty smart, he knew to the week when I would buy the tree, set the stand and decorate. I guess he was a sucker for pageantry and tradition. Cats are clever.

                          1. re: steve h.
                            suzigirl RE: steve h. Dec 18, 2013 07:06 PM

                            It is amazing how smart cats can be. They remember things we don't expect, like Christmas. They are very clever, I agree. Also mischevious little beings. You are right. That's the price of poker. Wouldn't trade it for all the money.

                          2. re: suzigirl
                            fldhkybnva RE: suzigirl Dec 18, 2013 07:03 PM

                            I couldn't resist a snapshot instead of discipline. This is the first day I feel like I can sort of breathe. I kicked myself out of the house this afternoon to go for a walk which was quite refreshing, but the highlight has been watching Take test the boundaries. It finally brought a longed for smile to my face. I agree with steve h.

                            1. re: fldhkybnva
                              weezieduzzit RE: fldhkybnva Dec 18, 2013 07:32 PM

                              Beautiful tree, fldhkybnva, and he's gotten so handsome!

                              1. re: weezieduzzit
                                fldhkybnva RE: weezieduzzit Dec 18, 2013 09:10 PM

                                Thanks, he seems to get bigger every day though it hasn't stopped him from plopping front and center between me and the laptop.

                              2. re: fldhkybnva
                                suzigirl RE: fldhkybnva Dec 18, 2013 08:17 PM

                                I can't get the picture. I will look at the top of the thread. I am sure the pic will melt my heart. I just looked and still can't get it. Damn tablet. I am glad that you feel like you can breathe again. I have missed your posts and was a bit concerned. That was a very tough blow and one I have felt before.
                                I am glad that you got out for a walk and enjoyed it. I am glad you are here. And i am glad you are enjoying Take. I hope I can get the pics soon.

                                1. re: suzigirl
                                  suzigirl RE: suzigirl Dec 18, 2013 08:36 PM

                                  I got your pictures. What a huge boy. And the tree ain't shabby. :-) He is getting so big and handsome. Happy holidays sweetie.

                                2. re: fldhkybnva
                                  LindaWhit RE: fldhkybnva Dec 18, 2013 08:46 PM

                                  Glad you're breathing again, fieldhawk. And gorgeous pic of Take with the tree - I hope it stays upright! LOL

                                  1. re: LindaWhit
                                    fldhkybnva RE: LindaWhit Dec 18, 2013 09:11 PM

                                    Thanks, suzigirl and LindaWhit! It's only been a few months but it feels like he's grown so much. He now frightens me leaping from the floor to the 4th level of the climbing tree house. The darn thing nearly topples over, probably should bolt it down sooner than later.
                                    My mood is hit or miss but I have accepted that that is to be expected. I'll be headed home Friday for the funeral and at this point just trying not to even think about that.

                                  2. re: fldhkybnva
                                    MamasCooking RE: fldhkybnva Dec 19, 2013 12:35 PM

                                    What a cutie:) Sucker for kitties here. ( three live with me).

                                  3. re: suzigirl
                                    weezieduzzit RE: suzigirl Dec 18, 2013 07:31 PM

                                    "The maniacs can't handle the responsibility."

                                    From one Bengal owner to another, that totally made me laugh, Suzi. I think the wildness in them is just too much around Christmas trees- they really can't help themselves. No tree here, either, possibly ever again but that's ok with me. Christmas is a short time, they make me happy and entertain me year 'round.

                                    1. re: weezieduzzit
                                      suzigirl RE: weezieduzzit Dec 18, 2013 07:55 PM

                                      I hear you loud and clear weezieduzzit. They are precious and I love my mix mutts and miss my F2's that I gave up in my divorce. Bengals are some kind of breed. Nothing is off limits, including a door jam. It is not unheard of in my house to have a cat on the top of an open door.

                                      1. re: suzigirl
                                        fldhkybnva RE: suzigirl Dec 18, 2013 09:14 PM

                                        I grew up with a ragdoll cat which, as the breed name suggests, is quite good at relaxing. Late last night I happened to catch a show called "Too Cute" that profiles kittens as they grow up. Ignoring the fact that I was watching a show probably targeted to elementary school age kids, it was very enlightening. They profiled a litter of Bengals and boy do they get around.

                                        1. re: fldhkybnva
                                          suzigirl RE: fldhkybnva Dec 19, 2013 12:44 PM

                                          "Too Cute" may be made for gradeschoolers but I watch it when i run into it. It is, as they say too cute. I have seen the one with the Bengals. They do have alot of energy. I had two before that could get on top of my very high cabinets in my kitchen and loved to hang out on the door jams like I mentioned. They liked it very high.

                                  4. re: steve h.
                                    LindaWhit RE: steve h. Dec 18, 2013 08:45 PM

                                    No poinsettias allowed - poisonous to the kittehs.

                                    And kitty mischief is cool only when you don't have to clean it up when you get home! LOL

                                  5. re: LindaWhit
                                    Berheenia RE: LindaWhit Dec 19, 2013 07:51 AM

                                    I changed my avatar to my favorite Christmas decoration hoping to cheer you up. The photo is from ebay as I am without photo posting capability these days. This little California Raisin is waving to me from his perch on the window sash as he sings "I heard it through the Grapevine"

                                    This is a post about food- grapes and raisins!

                                    1. re: Berheenia
                                      LindaWhit RE: Berheenia Dec 19, 2013 09:27 AM

                                      Aww, thanks! I'm OK - just stupeyheaded family stuff. Mom and I will enjoy dinner, no matter what. It'll be interesting - I'll be going up to her place to cook there vs. picking her up and bringing her back to my place (I have to work on the 26th and 27th). She has one of those teeny-tiny apartment stove/ovens, so the menu will be kept to a minimum, as I won't have the space to go all out.

                                    2. re: LindaWhit
                                      linguafood RE: LindaWhit Dec 19, 2013 02:07 PM

                                      See, we just left our CB xmas tree up on our fake fireplace mantel all year. No need to pack away and unpack.

                                      Convenience AND a festive spirit all year '-D

                                      1. re: LindaWhit
                                        givemecarbs RE: LindaWhit Dec 21, 2013 02:57 AM

                                        A lot of people/places are toning it down this year. My work eliminated the beloved white elephant gift exchange and the secret santa. A lot of my friends are taking it easy on the decorating. Watch out for that Charlie Brown Christmas tree when you do unpack it Linda. Someone whose blog I followed knocked hers over and the glass ball shattered all over. Then I saw one set up at Walgreens and darn if I didn't managed to somehow bump it and make it fall over and that glass ornament shattered too. I'd replace the glass one with an unbreakable ball.

                                        1. re: givemecarbs
                                          LindaWhit RE: givemecarbs Dec 21, 2013 02:26 PM

                                          Interesting - I could *swear* that the one I unpacked at work had a plastic ball! I'll have to check it when I return on the 26th.

                                          And why would your workplace eliminate the white elephant gift exchange/secret Santa? That is totally voluntary and at no cost to the company! Booo! :-(

                                          1. re: LindaWhit
                                            givemecarbs RE: LindaWhit Dec 22, 2013 11:56 PM

                                            The new secretary had everyone do a survey Linda. Surveys can be evil. The good news is that John gets to keep his large white china anteater that he got as a white elephant last year.
                                            Maybe they got smart and started making the tree with a plastic ball after many mishaps.
                                            One woman is a saint, she always sets up her chocolate fountain. Complete with many tidbits to dip. I've always been intrigued by those fountains but they seem like too much work. Lucky for me the snacking was fun and delicious. And no work for moi.

                                      2. juliejulez RE: roxlet Dec 18, 2013 06:50 PM

                                        I posted tonight's dinner in the other thread, and then realized that's probably the last of the cooking I'll be doing for awhile! Might pull something together on Friday or Saturday but no idea yet. Tomorrow night is the hockeys. Sunday we head up to Wyoming for a week for the holiday. I'm looking forward to eating all the trashy food that SO's family brings out at the holidays. Yes, even aerosol cheese.

                                        I am going to offer to make dinner one of the nights to give his mom a break, but haven't decided on that yet. Probably some kind of baked chicken or lasagna rolls or turkey meatloaf. We'll see if she lets me, I think she really enjoys her kids coming home and likes to make lots of food for everyone.

                                        3 Replies
                                        1. re: juliejulez
                                          suzigirl RE: juliejulez Dec 18, 2013 07:15 PM

                                          Enjoy the holidays at SO's mom's house. I would offer to cook but not be upset if she declines. She is cooking for her kids which she doesn't get to do alot of anymore. I would be thrilled if bf's mom let me cook. I don't see that in my near future. I hope that she can loosen the reins and let you cook. Happy holidays either way.

                                          1. re: suzigirl
                                            juliejulez RE: suzigirl Dec 18, 2013 07:24 PM

                                            Yeah if she declines I'll just enjoy having someone cook for me for once! Happy Holidays to you too :)

                                            1. re: suzigirl
                                              Berheenia RE: suzigirl Dec 19, 2013 07:38 AM

                                              I love aerosol cheese on a triscuit. Especially when a five year old is making the hors D'oeuvres for the grownups.

                                          2. w
                                            WishyFish RE: roxlet Dec 18, 2013 07:11 PM

                                            Tonight was italian drunken noodles courtesy of a pretty picture I saw on pinterest. (As are pretty much alllll my dinners.)

                                            1. jayt90 RE: roxlet Dec 18, 2013 07:43 PM

                                              Snow in S.W. Ontario kept me inside on the the computer all day. I set aside 10 minutes to make a one pot comfort meal.

                                              A slab of beef ribs, slathered in a tomato/habenero sauce, in a tajine with Kennebecs and a chunk of cabbage, covered and roasted 3 hours @ 225 F.

                                              1 Reply
                                              1. re: jayt90
                                                gini RE: jayt90 Dec 19, 2013 01:12 PM

                                                Come to mama.

                                              2. h
                                                Harters RE: roxlet Dec 19, 2013 02:57 AM

                                                Festive arrangements pretty much all planned so far. We're going to the sister in law's for Xmas lunch, so the shopping and cooking is much reduced. Non-perishables are already bought and we'll buy fruit and veg on Monday to, hopefully, beat the nightmare of Xmas Eve food shopping.

                                                Tonight's dinner - pork and chorizo burgers from Nigel Slater's latest book "Eat". Nothing fancy - 350g cooking chorizo, 250g minced pork mixed together and split into 4 burgers. He suggests ciabatta rolls or panini for the bread and some salad leaves. Simples.

                                                I only opened this book yesterday and have only got to page 30. Already I see that the recipes are going to feature heavily at Casa Harters. I love the way that he gives a main idea, as the chorizo burgers but on the opposite page gives some variations on the theme. So, his variations here would be to substitute morcilla for the chorizo and a second "recipe" using the meat form pork breakfast sausages and adding juniper berries, fennel seeds and oregano and/pr thyme. Man's a genius!

                                                8 Replies
                                                1. re: Harters
                                                  Berheenia RE: Harters Dec 19, 2013 07:42 AM

                                                  Sounds like a fun cookbook. Why don't you nominate it for COTM? I see it's available on both sides of the pond.

                                                  1. re: Berheenia
                                                    gingershelley RE: Berheenia Dec 19, 2013 02:54 PM

                                                    It's been on a few top-10 coobook lists of 2013 as well. Sounds great!

                                                  2. re: Harters
                                                    Cherylptw RE: Harters Dec 19, 2013 06:18 PM

                                                    Those burgers sound fabulous! Would you mind posting that recipe?

                                                    1. re: Cherylptw
                                                      Harters RE: Cherylptw Dec 20, 2013 02:11 AM

                                                      Cheryl - the "recipe", such as it is, is as I posted upthread.

                                                      350g cooking chorizo, 250g minced pork. Mix. No other seasoning. Form into burgers. Cook (we did them under the grill). Stick between bread. Eat.

                                                      They were lovely, by the way. Nice smokiness. I might add a little hot pimenton next time to give it a bit oif a kick. But it was fine just as.

                                                      1. re: Harters
                                                        Cherylptw RE: Harters Dec 20, 2013 05:47 PM

                                                        Thanks Harters; Imma try those sometime within the next two weeks while on vacation and I can get some nice chorizo.

                                                        1. re: Harters
                                                          ChristinaMason RE: Harters Dec 22, 2013 08:26 AM

                                                          Is "cooking chorizo" Mexican chorizo? AKA the soft stuff? I bet those would be good with ground chicken, too.

                                                          1. re: ChristinaMason
                                                            Harters RE: ChristinaMason Dec 22, 2013 08:28 AM

                                                            Yep. Soft - but Spanish where I am, not Mexican. Needs to be cooked, unlike the hard, salami type chorizo.

                                                            And, oh yes, I'm going to have to try them with chicken. Or, better, rabbit - I like bunny burgers but they are often a bit too mild flavoured on their own.

                                                            1. re: Harters
                                                              ChristinaMason RE: Harters Dec 22, 2013 03:55 PM

                                                              Sign me up.

                                                    2. melpy RE: roxlet Dec 19, 2013 03:03 AM

                                                      Tried to get my family to open gifts on Christmas Eve so I could relax this year but no. I have to get up super early on Christmas, open gifts and rush out the door.

                                                      Last night made Smitten Kitchen's mushroom bourginon and put it on pizza with four cheeses, mozzarella, Parmesan, mascarpone, and ricotta. I have finally mastered the pizza baking in my oven to taste almost like new Haven style.

                                                      1. ChristinaMason RE: roxlet Dec 19, 2013 05:39 AM

                                                        We'll be heading to the Midwest but not until Christmas Day, so there's still some cooking in our future. If I have time to get our home in some kind of order before we leave, I'd like to have some friends, who are staying local, over for dinner. Maybe Sunday. It's bound to be a hectic week, though, so let's see.

                                                        Tonight we'll probably have something easy---maybe ravioli and marinara and salad. And I hope to finally tackle those dishes.

                                                        4 Replies
                                                        1. re: ChristinaMason
                                                          ChristinaMason RE: ChristinaMason Dec 19, 2013 06:03 PM

                                                          Ravioli: check
                                                          Salad: check (with my new easy apricot balsamic dressing)
                                                          Dishes: er...not checked.

                                                          1. re: ChristinaMason
                                                            suzigirl RE: ChristinaMason Dec 19, 2013 06:08 PM

                                                            apricot balsamic? Share please. That sounds as a dressing or a nice glaze for chicken or pork. Thanks.

                                                            1. re: suzigirl
                                                              ChristinaMason RE: suzigirl Dec 19, 2013 07:40 PM

                                                              Sounds iffy, but it's really pretty good for how little effort is involved:

                                                              ~2 Tbsp. ea. Gulden's brown mustard (or your favorite) and Bonne Mamman apricot preserves, a pinch of dried thyme crumbled, small splash of soy sauce, couple glugs of Worcestershire, pinch of Aleppo pepper and toasted (or regular) onion powder, lots of freshly ground black pepper and sea salt. Whisk together with maybe 1/4 c. good balsamic vinegar (mine's Pompeian, have also used Colavita) and drizzle in toasted walnut oil to make an emulsion. Taste for seasonings and serve over mixed greens with some nice bitter varieties (like radicchio) and crubled walnuts. Goat cheese, sliced pears, and scallions would be stellar here.

                                                              ETA: I used a little green olive oil this time as well for more flavor.

                                                              1. re: ChristinaMason
                                                                suzigirl RE: ChristinaMason Dec 19, 2013 07:50 PM

                                                                Thanks. Sounds great.

                                                        2. biondanonima RE: roxlet Dec 19, 2013 06:19 AM

                                                          We're heading to Michigan tonight, so last night was a final clean-out of the fridge - a serendipitously tasty mix of Brussels sprouts and fennel, roasted together with Italian sausage. Really great combo that I hadn't thought of before but will definitely repeat!

                                                          Today I'm off work so I'm heading up to Arthur Ave. to stock a gift basket for my parents - Casa della Mozzarella, Calabria Pork Store, Teitel Bros, here I come! There may also be a stop or two for a burek or a slice for lunch!

                                                          1 Reply
                                                          1. re: biondanonima
                                                            gingershelley RE: biondanonima Dec 19, 2013 02:55 PM

                                                            Happy Holidays Biondanonima! Have a great festive trip!

                                                          2. mariacarmen RE: roxlet Dec 19, 2013 10:11 AM

                                                            we don't really celebrate xmas anymore. it's been eons since we exchanged gifts, as we long ago came to the conclusion that, for our family, we all had more than enough stuff we ever wanted or needed. I've even gotten all my friends on this non-gift-giving train with each other. it's been a huge relief not to have to shop in the madness.

                                                            since my mom went, we've also pared down the holiday meals. it's just not the same. I still make an effort for the Oldster, but this xmas we are completely going non-trad, even for us. last night, we went out to our "fancy" xmas dinner - my sister, her partner, and the Oldster, to a fun and delish Mexican-ish-tapas place, with cocktails (not the Oldster), and had a great time. we did it early as my sister will be very busy with dogs next week (she's a hoarder-I mean, boarder). on the day of, we're going to order in a shit-load of the most awesome Sichuan food from a local restaurant that has said they will be open, including a whole spicy crab. Bonus points that the Oldster actually loves a lot of this food.

                                                            The BF celebrates nothing. except me! i'll bring him some leftovers and we'll go out for cocktails.

                                                            and it's all goooood!!

                                                            dinner out tonight with a friend - tomorrow remains to be seen. Oldster's doc. wants us all to come in for a consult tomorrow. Not sounding to be great news. But we shall persevere. And eat well!

                                                            Happy Holidays all!

                                                            40 Replies
                                                            1. re: mariacarmen
                                                              Harters RE: mariacarmen Dec 19, 2013 10:22 AM

                                                              Oh, I so wish our family was as grown-up as yours, mc.

                                                              There's altogether too much fuss about presents that no-one really needs or wants. And, even when it comes to the "Big Day", there's so much stress because everything must be perfect. And it becomes a catastophe when it isnt.

                                                              I've said to Mrs H for years that I'd really love to spend Christmas in Tenerife and have a completely non traditional meal at a beachside restaurant. It doesnt go down well, truth be told as I am being miserable unsociable bugger, apparently. I've cooled on the idea of late - since I found out all the decent restaurants are closed on Xmas Day and the only ones open are the Brit owned ones serving the traditional turkey meal. BAH! HUMBUG!

                                                              1. re: Harters
                                                                mariacarmen RE: Harters Dec 19, 2013 10:31 AM

                                                                hahaha - we love miserable unsociable buggers here, Mr. H, so you'll have to talk Mrs. H into coming out for some good Chinese one year, just like our Jewish brethren do here in the States!

                                                                Merry Humbug to you!

                                                              2. re: mariacarmen
                                                                weezieduzzit RE: mariacarmen Dec 19, 2013 10:24 AM

                                                                I'm completely jealous of your Christmas. Thinking good thoughts about the Dr. appt.

                                                                1. re: weezieduzzit
                                                                  mariacarmen RE: weezieduzzit Dec 19, 2013 10:31 AM

                                                                  thanks Weezie!

                                                                  1. re: mariacarmen
                                                                    gingershelley RE: mariacarmen Dec 19, 2013 02:57 PM

                                                                    +1 on the Doc apt, MC!

                                                                2. re: mariacarmen
                                                                  gourmanda RE: mariacarmen Dec 19, 2013 10:39 AM

                                                                  Amen to no presents! Not Christmas, not birthdays-nada. (we make exception for the 2 little ones--cuz toys are fun!).

                                                                  Fingers crossed for the Dr. appt.

                                                                  1. re: gourmanda
                                                                    weezieduzzit RE: gourmanda Dec 19, 2013 10:51 AM

                                                                    We have to do presents for MIL, FIL and SIL ('cause there would be serious drama if we didn't.) Everyone else gets food gifts.

                                                                    1. re: gourmanda
                                                                      mariacarmen RE: gourmanda Dec 19, 2013 12:21 PM

                                                                      no birthdays here either! we just go out and eat!

                                                                      thanks for the good wishes.

                                                                    2. re: mariacarmen
                                                                      LindaWhit RE: mariacarmen Dec 19, 2013 11:23 AM

                                                                      My family has backed way off as well. I'll get my nephew a gift, and will bring a bottle of wine to my sister (and maybe some chocolate), but otherwise, I just buy Mom a couple of small gifts - and she gets her "gift certificate" towards freezer meals. :-)

                                                                      1. re: mariacarmen
                                                                        MamasCooking RE: mariacarmen Dec 19, 2013 12:28 PM

                                                                        MC.....you know how to live well. I raise my glass to you:)

                                                                        1. re: mariacarmen
                                                                          Berheenia RE: mariacarmen Dec 19, 2013 12:33 PM

                                                                          Fingers crossed for the oldster!

                                                                          1. re: Berheenia
                                                                            mariacarmen RE: Berheenia Dec 19, 2013 01:05 PM

                                                                            thanks Mamas and Berheenia!

                                                                          2. re: mariacarmen
                                                                            suzigirl RE: mariacarmen Dec 19, 2013 01:42 PM

                                                                            If only I lived in your world. I would love to not exchange gifts and all the madness involved in the holidays and just enjoy the day. I hope everything is fine with your father. I'll be thinking about you.

                                                                            1. re: mariacarmen
                                                                              acssss RE: mariacarmen Dec 19, 2013 01:58 PM

                                                                              Same here! I think Husband and I last exchanged gifts (for a holiday/b-day/anniversary) when we were dating!

                                                                              Hope all is good with oldster mc!

                                                                              1. re: acssss
                                                                                mariacarmen RE: acssss Dec 19, 2013 02:12 PM

                                                                                thanks all.

                                                                                truth be told, Oldster has been treating for leukemia for 19 months now (and he's 85). so, unfortunately, we're really not expecting to be too pleasantly surprised. but everyone is dealing. thanks so much for your kind, kind wishes.

                                                                                1. re: mariacarmen
                                                                                  roxlet RE: mariacarmen Dec 19, 2013 03:45 PM

                                                                                  Good luck today.

                                                                                  1. re: roxlet
                                                                                    mariacarmen RE: roxlet Dec 20, 2013 06:55 AM

                                                                                    thanks rox.

                                                                              2. re: mariacarmen
                                                                                linguafood RE: mariacarmen Dec 19, 2013 02:05 PM

                                                                                Yah, we don't celebrate xmas, either. My man's family has never been big on presents (thank goodness), and I convinced my mother and sister years ago that we should cut the crap out.

                                                                                Of course, my nephews will expect something, but thazz ok. They're kids, after all.

                                                                                The holidays are just another excuse (like we need one! HA!) for good food & drinks with good friends.... who apparently are all out of town over xmas. Wah.

                                                                                Looks like it'll be just my man and I, who, after last night's ridiculous stuffing to the gills, decided that we won't eat anything ever again once we return home from Philly :-D

                                                                                1. re: mariacarmen
                                                                                  ChristinaMason RE: mariacarmen Dec 19, 2013 06:08 PM

                                                                                  We do presents for our (adorable!) niece and nephews, whether blood relation or honorary. And my husband seems to insist we exchange with each other (he is renown for agreeing we won't "do" gifts, then surprising me with something---cute---but unfair!), so this time it's official and we are. He even started a Pinterest page to help out his poor clueless, wife who is mystified by the nuances of electronics. But I still have two gifts up my sleeve he doesn't suspect.

                                                                                  My in-laws will insist on giving us something, and it'll make me feel bad, but our flights out a couple times a year are gift enough, I hope. And we usually buy or make dinner at least one night of our visit. They understand I cook to show love (at least, I hope they do). My FIL used to run his own restaurant, so he's the same that way.

                                                                                  1. re: mariacarmen
                                                                                    rabaja RE: mariacarmen Dec 20, 2013 08:26 AM

                                                                                    Wishing you merry, mc! Hope your oldsters news is better than you think and that you all enjoy the season celebrating just as you wish.

                                                                                    1. re: rabaja
                                                                                      mariacarmen RE: rabaja Dec 20, 2013 10:14 AM

                                                                                      Thanks rabaja! hope you, the hubs, and baby rabaja have a wonderful holiday too!!

                                                                                      1. re: mariacarmen
                                                                                        linguafood RE: mariacarmen Dec 20, 2013 12:31 PM

                                                                                        Here's hoping for good news, mc.

                                                                                        1. re: linguafood
                                                                                          mariacarmen RE: linguafood Dec 20, 2013 04:55 PM

                                                                                          Thx lingua. We're still sitting here waiting for Dr. Boris Badinov to show up, as usual, hours late. (Not his real name, of course. He has a pretty heavy russian accent and a terrible bedside manner.)

                                                                                          1. re: mariacarmen
                                                                                            mariacarmen RE: mariacarmen Dec 21, 2013 12:17 AM

                                                                                            ok, as expected, not good news. chemo has stopped working, but we have a couple of maybe options. the Oldster is deciding if he'll take one or the other. he's leaning towards trying to fight it some more, as long its not too extraordinary - quality of life is key, as we all know. and, amazingly, he seems to think he can beat this. it's highly unlikely (read: impossible) but who am i to rain on his parade? As long as he wants to keep going, we'll be right there with him. Feeding him food he likes or doesn't like, whether he likes it or not!

                                                                                            Thanks all today for your good thoughts - very sweet and supportive.

                                                                                            1. re: mariacarmen
                                                                                              Harters RE: mariacarmen Dec 21, 2013 04:56 AM

                                                                                              Thoughts remain with you, mc.

                                                                                              Keep doing what you're doing. The Oldster knows you're there for him.

                                                                                              1. re: Harters
                                                                                                mariacarmen RE: Harters Dec 21, 2013 11:40 AM

                                                                                                thanks Mr. H, appreciate it.

                                                                                              2. re: mariacarmen
                                                                                                MamasCooking RE: mariacarmen Dec 21, 2013 08:23 AM

                                                                                                Take care of yourself MC in this trying time. I know you and your sister take such good care of your Oldster and you never complain about it. You always post such pleasant positive things. We should all be so lucky to have loving daughters like you and your sister.

                                                                                                1. re: MamasCooking
                                                                                                  mariacarmen RE: MamasCooking Dec 21, 2013 11:41 AM

                                                                                                  aw thanks Mama - very sweet of you. believe me, not always so pleasant in real life!! but thanks.

                                                                                                2. re: mariacarmen
                                                                                                  suzigirl RE: mariacarmen Dec 21, 2013 08:35 AM

                                                                                                  I am sorry that the news wasn't good. I hope that whatever he decides that he is comfortable and as well as can be. This is so difficult to hear, i can only imagine how hard it is for you. Be strong in this trying time. Best wishes to your family.

                                                                                                  1. re: suzigirl
                                                                                                    mariacarmen RE: suzigirl Dec 21, 2013 11:42 AM

                                                                                                    thanks suzi, we are ok, been dealing with this (and my mom just before this) for a long time now. you're very kind.

                                                                                                  2. re: mariacarmen
                                                                                                    boyzoma RE: mariacarmen Dec 21, 2013 12:03 PM

                                                                                                    Here's to you mc. I'm just learning how hard that part is so my thoughts and prayers are with you and your Oldster too. Bless your heart.

                                                                                                    1. re: boyzoma
                                                                                                      mariacarmen RE: boyzoma Dec 21, 2013 12:22 PM

                                                                                                      my thoughts will be with you, too, BZ! xoxo

                                                                                                      1. re: boyzoma
                                                                                                        suzigirl RE: boyzoma Dec 21, 2013 12:46 PM

                                                                                                        I was just discussing you and MC with my bf. You are both in my thoughts. You can only make the best of what you have and push forward. All my best to both of you.

                                                                                                      2. re: mariacarmen
                                                                                                        steve h. RE: mariacarmen Dec 21, 2013 12:33 PM

                                                                                                        Deb and I admire you and your family.

                                                                                                        Merry Christmas!

                                                                                                        1. re: mariacarmen
                                                                                                          Berheenia RE: mariacarmen Dec 21, 2013 12:35 PM

                                                                                                          Sorry to hear the news but he's such a spirited man, your Dad. You must be proud of him and who knows? Miracles have happened.

                                                                                                          1. re: mariacarmen
                                                                                                            foodieX2 RE: mariacarmen Dec 21, 2013 12:42 PM

                                                                                                            So sorry MC. My thoughts continue to be with you and your family.

                                                                                                            <<As long as he wants to keep going, we'll be right there with him. Feeding him food he likes or doesn't like, whether he likes it or not!>>

                                                                                                            When my mom went thru treatment it was almost a game to find foods to tempt her into eating. We would watch cooking shows together and if I saw even a glimmer of interest I would rush home and make it. One of those has become of household/family favorite. Feeding the ones you love is a source of healing in itself.

                                                                                                            1. re: mariacarmen
                                                                                                              LindaWhit RE: mariacarmen Dec 21, 2013 02:28 PM

                                                                                                              Sending good thoughts the Oldster's way in his ongoing fight , mc. I will picture him with a Viking helmet and broadsword, ready to do battle with the demon, and ready to win!

                                                                                                              1. re: LindaWhit
                                                                                                                mariacarmen RE: LindaWhit Dec 21, 2013 03:09 PM

                                                                                                                LW - this made me "smile out loud"!

                                                                                                                1. re: mariacarmen
                                                                                                                  LindaWhit RE: mariacarmen Dec 21, 2013 03:45 PM

                                                                                                                  I think it would be the PERFECT Christmas gift for the Oldster, mc! :-)

                                                                                                              2. re: mariacarmen
                                                                                                                gini RE: mariacarmen Dec 22, 2013 09:42 AM

                                                                                                                Virtual support and thoughts coming your way!

                                                                                                    2. weezieduzzit RE: roxlet Dec 19, 2013 10:44 AM

                                                                                                      I just did a little "quality control" testing of the meatball mix I made for tonight (ground lamb, feta, caramelized onions, lots of mint, seasonings,) by pan frying a few and it is delicious so I'm going to go ahead and bake off the batch and freeze some for an easy dinner later. I will use some of the chicken stock I made on Tuesday for a pot of Avgolemano (minus the orzo, plus some kale and chard sliced into ribbons and stirred through at the last minute to wilt.)

                                                                                                      Nice and easy since I'm emptying the kitchen of extra appliances, etc. to make room for tamale making and baking this weekend. I'll need every inch of counter space I can get.

                                                                                                      ETA: I opened some of the sweet cherry peppers I grew that I pickled a few months back- WOW! They're so good! I think I'll finally open some balsamic and red wine eggplant too(that I keep meaning to try...) you know... more quality control before I give some as gifts. Both will be nice with the meatballs tonight.

                                                                                                      5 Replies
                                                                                                      1. re: weezieduzzit
                                                                                                        gourmanda RE: weezieduzzit Dec 19, 2013 10:54 AM

                                                                                                        Those meatballs sound delish!

                                                                                                        1. re: gourmanda
                                                                                                          Cherylptw RE: gourmanda Dec 19, 2013 06:26 PM

                                                                                                          +++ sounds great!

                                                                                                        2. re: weezieduzzit
                                                                                                          mariacarmen RE: weezieduzzit Dec 19, 2013 12:21 PM

                                                                                                          ditto on the meatballs, and that eggplant!

                                                                                                          1. re: weezieduzzit
                                                                                                            suzigirl RE: weezieduzzit Dec 19, 2013 01:45 PM

                                                                                                            Jealous of everything. That all sounds like a nice intro to a meal tonight.

                                                                                                            1. re: weezieduzzit
                                                                                                              gingershelley RE: weezieduzzit Dec 19, 2013 03:01 PM

                                                                                                              Ooh! Weezie - avgolemeno sounds great - I might have to make some this weekend; one of my favorite soups:). And the meatballs sounds excellent too!

                                                                                                            2. boyzoma RE: roxlet Dec 19, 2013 01:22 PM

                                                                                                              Well, we're so bummed. DH and I spend all weekend making and simmering spaghetti sauce for the kids and grand kids and now he just found out he has no time off [zero - none - nada] available due to his recent surgery. We won't be able to go for the holidays. I'm just beside myself. We don't usually decorate since we are never home. Bummer.

                                                                                                              So, yesterday I spent the day making chicken stock. Went through 7 bags of chicken bones I had in the freezer. Best stock I ever made. Today I am making chicken noodle soup. I need comfort food. 1/2 turkey sandwich to go with tonight.

                                                                                                              Also found out my dad is in the hospital, so all plans for Christmas dinner are now on hold anyway. Guess we'll just play it by ear. **sigh**

                                                                                                              20 Replies
                                                                                                              1. re: boyzoma
                                                                                                                suzigirl RE: boyzoma Dec 19, 2013 01:57 PM

                                                                                                                Bummer. When it rains it pours. I hope the soup gives a smidge of comfort.

                                                                                                                1. re: boyzoma
                                                                                                                  linguafood RE: boyzoma Dec 19, 2013 02:02 PM

                                                                                                                  That sucks, bz. This has been a week of bad news on the WFD thread.

                                                                                                                  1. re: boyzoma
                                                                                                                    acssss RE: boyzoma Dec 19, 2013 02:03 PM

                                                                                                                    Hope Dad is ok, sorry to hear about kids/grandkids... and I hope the chicken soup does the trick and warms the soul... although the spaghetti sauce may work just as well

                                                                                                                    1. re: boyzoma
                                                                                                                      LindaWhit RE: boyzoma Dec 19, 2013 02:12 PM

                                                                                                                      Boo, boyzoma! I hope Dad's ok.

                                                                                                                      1. re: boyzoma
                                                                                                                        mariacarmen RE: boyzoma Dec 19, 2013 02:59 PM

                                                                                                                        oh no! i'm so sorry - that really sucks about not being able to go away to see the family... and sincerely hope Dad will be ok. bummer all around.

                                                                                                                        1. re: boyzoma
                                                                                                                          gingershelley RE: boyzoma Dec 19, 2013 03:03 PM

                                                                                                                          Bummer! Sometimes, the holidays are not what we planned or wished. I hope you two find some joy and festiveness among the dissapointments.... still time to make a nice Christmas at home together:)

                                                                                                                          1. re: boyzoma
                                                                                                                            roxlet RE: boyzoma Dec 19, 2013 03:46 PM

                                                                                                                            Bummer. Be of good cheer? Maybe?

                                                                                                                            1. re: boyzoma
                                                                                                                              ChristinaMason RE: boyzoma Dec 19, 2013 06:12 PM

                                                                                                                              I understand how bummed you must be feeling. What a disappointment. Best wishes for your pops.

                                                                                                                              1. re: boyzoma
                                                                                                                                rabaja RE: boyzoma Dec 19, 2013 06:24 PM

                                                                                                                                That stinks! I hope you are able to salvage your holiday. An epiphany dinner perhaps?
                                                                                                                                Healing wishes to your father as well

                                                                                                                                1. re: boyzoma
                                                                                                                                  Cherylptw RE: boyzoma Dec 19, 2013 06:30 PM

                                                                                                                                  Wow, that sucks (if I might be so forward...lol) Hope you make the best of your holiday wherever you are and hope your dad mends quickly....

                                                                                                                                  1. re: boyzoma
                                                                                                                                    boyzoma RE: boyzoma Dec 20, 2013 12:18 PM

                                                                                                                                    I want to thank you all for your sympathies and well wishes for my dad. He's still in the hospital and we now know he has cancer in his left lung, and is battling pneumonia. DH and I can't go see him since we are both battling colds (which would be a big no no for him). Explained the circumstances to my daughter and she understood (but is bummed and was even going to surprise us with prime rib for Christmas - which really upsets me as it is my favorite of all time).

                                                                                                                                    Tonight will be either leftover spaghetti or more chicken noodle soup (which was oh, so good).

                                                                                                                                    Guess we'll check the sales at the stupid market and see what they have for a nice xmas dinner. Hope they have a good sale on wine! **sigh**

                                                                                                                                    1. re: boyzoma
                                                                                                                                      LindaWhit RE: boyzoma Dec 20, 2013 12:33 PM

                                                                                                                                      {{{{hugs}}}} bz. I hope your dad is out of there soon and home with family - and that it's a treatable form of that evil beeyotch.

                                                                                                                                      1. re: LindaWhit
                                                                                                                                        boyzoma RE: LindaWhit Dec 20, 2013 12:42 PM

                                                                                                                                        Thanks, Linda. I talked to him a little while ago and he is refusing any treatment other than for the pneumonia. He says he is 85 and already in frail health and that he couldn't stand the trials of treatment. We'll have to see where this goes. I'm pretty much broken right now (plus my poor 16 year old dog is not doing well either - blind and deaf and having trouble standing). 2013 just hasn't been good to us this year.

                                                                                                                                        1. re: boyzoma
                                                                                                                                          LindaWhit RE: boyzoma Dec 20, 2013 12:49 PM

                                                                                                                                          Ohhh, hon, I can't imagine what you're dealing with right now. While I do understand your father's reasoning, it doesn't make it any better for those who love him, other than to somehow be OK with the fact that he is still making his own decisions. It's never easy, however.

                                                                                                                                          And {{more hugs}} for the doggums and you. Hang in there.

                                                                                                                                          1. re: boyzoma
                                                                                                                                            Harters RE: boyzoma Dec 20, 2013 01:24 PM

                                                                                                                                            Thoughts with you, boyzoma.

                                                                                                                                            And respect to your father for knowing what he wants (or doesnt want).

                                                                                                                                            A difficult time for everyone.


                                                                                                                                            1. re: boyzoma
                                                                                                                                              mariacarmen RE: boyzoma Dec 20, 2013 04:48 PM

                                                                                                                                              Ohhh BZ, so sorry for the terrible news, and that your daddy is deciding to not treat. Totally get it, but its very hard to contemplate. Sad for you all, esp. this time of year, when you were so looking forward to your trip. Wishing you all the best this week, and all our good thoughts are with you always. Xoxo.

                                                                                                                                              1. re: boyzoma
                                                                                                                                                Cherylptw RE: boyzoma Dec 20, 2013 05:43 PM

                                                                                                                                                My heart goes out to you what with your father's illness and your dog...I unexpectly lost my dog three months ago and I am still devastated. She was three weeks from her 10th birthday. I hope your father gets back on the mend soon and please love on your dog just as long as you can.

                                                                                                                                            2. re: boyzoma
                                                                                                                                              suzigirl RE: boyzoma Dec 20, 2013 02:35 PM

                                                                                                                                              That is such big news. I am so sorry for you. I hope that your father is out of the hospital soon. What a difficult toime for you. Between your father and an aging doggy on your hands you sure have a full plate. You are in my thoughts.

                                                                                                                                              1. re: boyzoma
                                                                                                                                                foodieX2 RE: boyzoma Dec 20, 2013 03:03 PM

                                                                                                                                                <<hugs>> I am sorry for all you are going thru. Wishing all the best.

                                                                                                                                                1. re: boyzoma
                                                                                                                                                  roxlet RE: boyzoma Dec 21, 2013 01:30 PM

                                                                                                                                                  Ah, December is being tough on the daddies it seems. That is very tough. My thoughts are with you.

                                                                                                                                              2. gini RE: roxlet Dec 19, 2013 01:27 PM

                                                                                                                                                I am deep, deep into the thrill that is a solid week of holiday parties. Last night, my company's holiday party. Put it this way - we closed down two bars, someone lost a pair of shoes, and another named himself after a cannoli and became a detective. Tonight, the man's holiday party at the Aquarium, where I will drink scotch and say hello to the penguins.

                                                                                                                                                At some point in time, I hope to eat solid food again. Maybe this weekend?

                                                                                                                                                11 Replies
                                                                                                                                                1. re: gini
                                                                                                                                                  suzigirl RE: gini Dec 19, 2013 02:00 PM

                                                                                                                                                  Now that's a holiday party. You must keep us informed of any drunken penguins at tonight's party. :-)

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: suzigirl
                                                                                                                                                    gourmanda RE: suzigirl Dec 19, 2013 02:05 PM

                                                                                                                                                    or penguin detectives!

                                                                                                                                                  2. re: gini
                                                                                                                                                    LindaWhit RE: gini Dec 19, 2013 02:12 PM

                                                                                                                                                    Wave to the manta ray in the big tank!

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: gini
                                                                                                                                                      mariacarmen RE: gini Dec 19, 2013 03:02 PM

                                                                                                                                                      I am totally jealous. I used to go to such holiday parties. miss them! where I work now, not only are the parties for staff segregated from the attorneys, i.e., the attorneys get a big fancy party at an away venue, but our in-office party has now been downgraded to a dry event. WTF??? the parties here were barely tolerable with booze!

                                                                                                                                                      have so much (more) fun!!

                                                                                                                                                      1. re: mariacarmen
                                                                                                                                                        LindaWhit RE: mariacarmen Dec 19, 2013 04:24 PM

                                                                                                                                                        Wait - the attorneys who get paid a LOT of money have a separate, fancy party and the staff gets bupkiss?

                                                                                                                                                        Morons. That does doodly-squat for morale amongst the staff.

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: LindaWhit
                                                                                                                                                          mariacarmen RE: LindaWhit Dec 20, 2013 07:04 AM

                                                                                                                                                          yeah, i don't get it. it's the first place i've worked where the annual party does not include everyone. i think the staff here has all been with the company for so long that they don't mind it.

                                                                                                                                                          however, i do have to say, this company has been EXTREMELY generous with me in the 2+ years i've been here, and tho they're rather a dull lot, they're super nice to me, and accommodating, especially when it comes to the time i need to take off for the oldster. so i really can't bitch too much. and to bring this back to food - they feed us breakfast every monday, lunch every thursday, and during staff appreciation week they take us out to fancy restaurants for a good lunch.

                                                                                                                                                          but the new no booze policy? feh.

                                                                                                                                                          1. re: mariacarmen
                                                                                                                                                            mariacarmen RE: mariacarmen Dec 20, 2013 10:14 AM

                                                                                                                                                            AND, they just gave us the whole of Xmas eve off, instead of just half. whoo-hooo!

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: mariacarmen
                                                                                                                                                              LindaWhit RE: mariacarmen Dec 20, 2013 11:36 AM

                                                                                                                                                              Woo hoo!!!! :-)

                                                                                                                                                      2. re: gini
                                                                                                                                                        gini RE: gini Dec 20, 2013 06:47 AM

                                                                                                                                                        Guys, I need to hydrate in a very real, very urgent way.

                                                                                                                                                        The Aquarium was really fun! The touch tank filled with rays was open (so slippery!) and they set up food & bars on all three levels so you could check out the penguins while eating petit fours, stare at the tank while downing oysters, and finally eat some entrees around the middle of the tank. It was sort of amusing to eat arctic char, cold shrimp, and oysters while staring at spiny lobsters.

                                                                                                                                                        I need to go find somewhere horizontal to place myself. That or I need to train for these types of events!

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: gini
                                                                                                                                                          mariacarmen RE: gini Dec 20, 2013 07:07 AM

                                                                                                                                                          ok, now THAT'S a holiday party.

                                                                                                                                                          but how very cruel to be eating their brothers and sisters right in front of them! kinda like chomping on a burger in front of a cow.

                                                                                                                                                          seriously tho, sorry about the hangover, hope you recover soon, and glad you had a good time!

                                                                                                                                                          1. re: gini
                                                                                                                                                            LindaWhit RE: gini Dec 20, 2013 07:46 AM

                                                                                                                                                            LOTS of water, Advil and some plain toast! (I can't do the greasy hangover food thing!)

                                                                                                                                                            Glad you had a good time!

                                                                                                                                                        2. a
                                                                                                                                                          acssss RE: roxlet Dec 19, 2013 02:20 PM

                                                                                                                                                          Tonight husband and I are on our own... nice. So... dinner tonight will be oven-grilled seabass (whole and butterflied) with minced garlic, olive oil, cherry tomatoes and calamata olives. Will be served alongside roasted eggplants (whole/peels removed) with tehina sauce, rosemary steak fries and wine.

                                                                                                                                                          1. gingershelley RE: roxlet Dec 19, 2013 03:17 PM

                                                                                                                                                            It's been a mad, mad 10 days of working morning to night - then catching the flu from some d***mn fool who came to work contagious and sick, and breathed on all of us cheffy people... sigh. Actually went home sick and delerious with fever Friday night, slept for 16 hours, then got up and worked Saturday and Sunday night again.

                                                                                                                                                            Finally slowing down as we get closer to Christmas and people begin to travel. And the sicky finally mostly had left by yesterday evening.So - looking up now, and forward to flying off to South Pas, CA with all of my SEA family to go to my sisters for a big, chaotic child-filled Christmas! My BIL & SIL have 4 kids under the age of 6, and my sister has 3 HS and college age teens, so it should be a great time.

                                                                                                                                                            I am baking Christmas cookies today to mail off to her house tomorrow, as she is crazy with work and family stuff and hasn't had any time to bake.

                                                                                                                                                            I haven't been eating anything interesting lately; finally had my first home-made dinner last night, which was old school taco's with shredded pork and refries from the freezer. Was great to eat something that wasn't Holiday dinner Beef and farmed salmon (which I can never eat again,after all the plates of those I have cooked and served the last couple of weeks)! Mostly this weekend it is going to be clean out the fridge creative small meals, as I fly out Monday morning.

                                                                                                                                                            Fortunately, we are low-key on gifts, preferring it to be about being together. We draw names, and each person buys one gift, and we do small trinkets in stockings for the wee kids for Christmas morning, so shopping has been easy to fit in.

                                                                                                                                                            Tonight is a roasted chicken breast, brining in the fridge now, which I will stuff with some spinach/artichoke boursin soft cheese; some roasted mushrooms, marinara sauce on the side.

                                                                                                                                                            Yeah - Christmas is finally coming

                                                                                                                                                            4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                            1. re: gingershelley
                                                                                                                                                              LindaWhit RE: gingershelley Dec 19, 2013 04:25 PM

                                                                                                                                                              UGH on the flu, gingershel! Glad you're feeling a bit better, and things are winding down for you.

                                                                                                                                                              1. re: gingershelley
                                                                                                                                                                suzigirl RE: gingershelley Dec 19, 2013 04:28 PM

                                                                                                                                                                Sorry that you were sick. Its been rough here at the dinner table lately. Glad you are feeling better.

                                                                                                                                                                1. re: suzigirl
                                                                                                                                                                  gingershelley RE: suzigirl Dec 20, 2013 01:33 AM

                                                                                                                                                                  I need to go back and read.... got rumblings that some things are amiss with folks - illness and loss..... :(

                                                                                                                                                                2. re: gingershelley
                                                                                                                                                                  mariacarmen RE: gingershelley Dec 20, 2013 07:09 AM

                                                                                                                                                                  glad you're feeling better, gs! your upcoming holiday week sounds really fun, enjoy! i hear so. cal. is enjoying summery weather right now.

                                                                                                                                                                3. LindaWhit RE: roxlet Dec 19, 2013 04:39 PM

                                                                                                                                                                  Chili pulled from the freezer, over elbow noodles, with grated sharp cheddar and a dollop of sour cream on top. It's dinner.

                                                                                                                                                                  Tomorrow night will be the company Christmas party. Which I planned but don't really feel like going to. :-/ At least I know the Chicken Marsala, Prime Rib, and Butternut Squash Ravioli with Gorgonzola Fig Cream Sauce will be good. And the wine. :-)

                                                                                                                                                                  7 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: LindaWhit
                                                                                                                                                                    foodieX2 RE: LindaWhit Dec 19, 2013 04:44 PM

                                                                                                                                                                    So jealous! We have a christmas potluck *breakfast*. Yes, get to work early and bring your own food. Oh and guess what? The head honcho has planned party games with prizes! Oh joy oh bliss. And the party has a "hard stop" to continue budget reviews.

                                                                                                                                                                    What I would give for a party with wine, LOL! There had just better be GOOD coffee.

                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: foodieX2
                                                                                                                                                                      LindaWhit RE: foodieX2 Dec 19, 2013 04:47 PM

                                                                                                                                                                      Party games? PARTY GAMES? And a potluck breakfast?

                                                                                                                                                                      Oy. My sympathies, foodie. Wanna drive up and go as my date? LOL

                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: LindaWhit
                                                                                                                                                                        foodieX2 RE: LindaWhit Dec 19, 2013 04:59 PM

                                                                                                                                                                        Yes party games complete with a "holiday quiz"! Seriously, I am getting to old for this shit!

                                                                                                                                                                        Would love to be your date, LOL. If I hadn't insanely offered to host my husband's family tomorrow I might have taken you up on the offer! :)

                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: foodieX2
                                                                                                                                                                          LindaWhit RE: foodieX2 Dec 19, 2013 05:14 PM

                                                                                                                                                                          LOL! Good luck at the family party. Perhaps my office Christmas party isn't going to be all that bad, considering. :-)

                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: LindaWhit
                                                                                                                                                                            foodieX2 RE: LindaWhit Dec 19, 2013 05:21 PM

                                                                                                                                                                            Thanks LW-have fun tomorrow!

                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: foodieX2
                                                                                                                                                                            Berheenia RE: foodieX2 Dec 20, 2013 06:42 AM

                                                                                                                                                                            I forgot how much we hated our office parties. We both worked for non-profits so were expected to do the pot luck and dumb games/secret santa thing on our 'lunch hours'. The first year at my job I did secret santa but no one gave me a gift and there was a 2 foot hair in the salad. But there was booze back in the nineties! The 21st century saw bad catered food and no booze. Gift cards with the taxes taken out of your next check. I did convince my company to have a pot luck dessert table which was the saving grace. Discovered chocolate covered saltines and some interesting chocolates with high proof liquid centers that went fast!

                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: foodieX2
                                                                                                                                                                          mariacarmen RE: foodieX2 Dec 20, 2013 07:10 AM

                                                                                                                                                                          ok that sucks more than my party. i'm sorry foodie...

                                                                                                                                                                      2. suzigirl RE: roxlet Dec 19, 2013 04:47 PM

                                                                                                                                                                        Greek inspired pork loin with rosemary, oregano, lemon , olive oil, badia, garlic and lemon salt and pepper and roasted in the oven . Leftover rice seasoned with badia, garlic and and parmesan cheese and fried into a cake. Zucchini sauted in butter, bacon fat and garlic.

                                                                                                                                                                        2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: suzigirl
                                                                                                                                                                          acssss RE: suzigirl Dec 20, 2013 09:01 AM

                                                                                                                                                                          oh... I love the idea of making leftover rice into a cake. I always have leftover rice and just take it apart and serve it. I have to try making it into a cake and frying it! Why did I never think of that?!

                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: acssss
                                                                                                                                                                            suzigirl RE: acssss Dec 20, 2013 02:38 PM

                                                                                                                                                                            It's already nice and sticky so it takes no effort. And they are delicious.

                                                                                                                                                                        2. Cherylptw RE: roxlet Dec 19, 2013 06:37 PM

                                                                                                                                                                          Tonight was a quick & easy dinner....chicken wing drummets were fried and doused with sweet chili sauce for DF; sides were leftover rice pilaf and buttered corn nibblets. I had a bowl of chili from last night and a couple of homemade rolls.

                                                                                                                                                                          1. w
                                                                                                                                                                            WishyFish RE: roxlet Dec 19, 2013 09:26 PM

                                                                                                                                                                            Baked lemon chicken thighs, zucchini roasted with garlic slices and herbs, and roasted walnut oil spaghetti with garlic and red pepper.

                                                                                                                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: WishyFish
                                                                                                                                                                              mariacarmen RE: WishyFish Dec 20, 2013 07:13 AM

                                                                                                                                                                              mmm...you've got my attention? what is roasted walnut oil spaghetti?

                                                                                                                                                                            2. f
                                                                                                                                                                              foodhead RE: roxlet Dec 19, 2013 09:37 PM

                                                                                                                                                                              I had some frozen fish so made simple Bengali fish (turmeric, onions, green chilis, cilantro, can of tomatoes) with brown rice. Sides were collards braised with onions & garlic and an old Madhur Jaffrey recipe for cabbage with peas. Very satisfying and enough left over for tomorrow.

                                                                                                                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: foodhead
                                                                                                                                                                                acssss RE: foodhead Dec 20, 2013 08:57 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                sounds like the perfect meal!

                                                                                                                                                                              2. h
                                                                                                                                                                                Harters RE: roxlet Dec 20, 2013 02:25 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                In this house, there's always a need to find something new to do with a couple of chicken breasts.

                                                                                                                                                                                This "new" sees sliced mushrooms, chopped breast and chopped smoked bacon fried for a bit. Garlic goes in , as does flour and milk to make a thickish sauce. Lots of parsley is added. This all goes into an ovenproof dish,

                                                                                                                                                                                There's a "rosti" topping. Spuds are grated and mixed with grated cheddar. Goes on top and the dish goes into the oven for 25 minutes or so. Leaf salad will accompany.

                                                                                                                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Harters
                                                                                                                                                                                  roxlet RE: Harters Dec 20, 2013 04:12 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                  That sounds very good! Chicken breasts are frequently on my menu too...though not on my husband's, lol!

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Harters
                                                                                                                                                                                    rabaja RE: Harters Dec 20, 2013 08:29 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                    That sound sooo good. Love the potato and cheddar topping.

                                                                                                                                                                                  2. Berheenia RE: roxlet Dec 20, 2013 06:46 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                    Leftovers, leftovers, burgers, leftovers, French Restaurant, pizza, Christmas eve! Sums up my WFD for the countdown. Got to make room in the fridge for the good stuff.

                                                                                                                                                                                    1. MidwesternerTT RE: roxlet Dec 20, 2013 07:56 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                      Chili, served with a loaf of whole wheat beer bread fresh from the oven.

                                                                                                                                                                                      Also reported over on the cookbook of the month Roasting thread for reviews of a couple of recent evening meals - pork tenderloin in rosemary mustard sauce, and pork Char Sui - (Chinese spiced roast pork slices).

                                                                                                                                                                                      I wrapped up the cookie-baking Monday and am now back to making meals. While I was in baking mode we had easy meals from the freezer-stash -- Runzas, chicken and tortellini soup, pizza, frozen commercial clam chowder (not very good) with deli seafood salad on dinner rolls, excellent frozen commercial wild rice soup with roast beef sandwiches on naan.

                                                                                                                                                                                      5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: MidwesternerTT
                                                                                                                                                                                        LindaWhit RE: MidwesternerTT Dec 20, 2013 08:08 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                        The pork tenderloin in rosemary-mustard sauce sounds very good!

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: MidwesternerTT
                                                                                                                                                                                          Berheenia RE: MidwesternerTT Dec 20, 2013 08:42 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                          Chili of course! I forgot I have some in the freezer! My midwestern mother always served delicious chili and cornbread on Christmas eve. I think I'll do that on the eve of Christmas eve.

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: MidwesternerTT
                                                                                                                                                                                            acssss RE: MidwesternerTT Dec 20, 2013 08:57 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                            The beer bread sounds incredible!!

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: acssss
                                                                                                                                                                                              MidwesternerTT RE: acssss Dec 20, 2013 01:31 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                              TY - It's a quick stir-together, then 50 minutes or so of baking. My recipe is one we refined by combining / adjusting several from cookbooks until we got the balance of sugars, salt and texture just as we like. My sister makes it with all white flour for a finer texture, and many recipe books omit the egg.

                                                                                                                                                                                              12 oz can beer
                                                                                                                                                                                              1 egg
                                                                                                                                                                                              2 c. white flour
                                                                                                                                                                                              1 c. whole wheat flour
                                                                                                                                                                                              4 1/2 tsp. Baking powder (be sure it's not beyond expiration date)
                                                                                                                                                                                              1 1/2 tsp. salt
                                                                                                                                                                                              1/2 cup minus 2 Tablespoon sugar
                                                                                                                                                                                              2 T. brown sugar

                                                                                                                                                                                              (optional) top with 1 – 2 T. melted butter

                                                                                                                                                                                              Mix egg & beer. Add all dry ingredients and mix with a spoon 20-30 seconds – do not overmix. Batter will be lumpy. Pour into a greased 9 x 5 inch bread pan. Top with melted butter.

                                                                                                                                                                                              Bake 375 degrees, 45- 55 minutes until golden brown and bread pulls away from sides of pan.

                                                                                                                                                                                              Remove from pan and cool on wire rack 30 minutes before slicing (Note - that seldom actually happens in our house, but it really is lots easier to slice if you can wait a bit). Store any leftovers wrapped in waxed paper (gets soggy if you store in plastic) - a bread pan and/or tape helps hold waxed paper around loaf.

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: MidwesternerTT
                                                                                                                                                                                                acssss RE: MidwesternerTT Dec 20, 2013 04:32 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                Husband is the bread baker in our house and I gave him your recipe and he said he'll make it this weekend... I'm very excited. Never had beer bread before... Thanks!!

                                                                                                                                                                                          2. a
                                                                                                                                                                                            acssss RE: roxlet Dec 20, 2013 08:53 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                            I got up very early this morning, as our knitting group finally completed our winter supply of hats, scarves, sweaters, throws and knitted pants to donate to our local community (anyone read "A good yarn"? One of my favorite things to do :-)
                                                                                                                                                                                            Dinner tonight will be extra spicy (for the vitamin C - so I don't catch what a lot of you have had this past month) Penne all'arrabbiata, tomato/basil bruschetta and a plate of antipasto - salami, olives, grilled red peppers, grilled zucchini, hearts of palms and roasted squash squares to be served with sangria (I bought a ton of fruit today on sale).

                                                                                                                                                                                            To all those who are ill, feel better... and to everyone have a wonderful weekend!!

                                                                                                                                                                                            edit: MC, I hope the news about Oldster was good news. My Dad is the same age and I know how shaky things can get.

                                                                                                                                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: acssss
                                                                                                                                                                                              mariacarmen RE: acssss Dec 20, 2013 10:18 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                              thanks so much acssss. will know this afternoon about 3:30.

                                                                                                                                                                                              yums on that antipasta platter! i'm thinking we'll do that to nosh on for xmas eve.

                                                                                                                                                                                              and yes, don't dare get sick!

                                                                                                                                                                                            2. Paprikaboy RE: roxlet Dec 20, 2013 12:30 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                              Getting ready for the meat fest that will be Christmas so decided on some sea food. Sliced some squid into rings, dusted with flour , salt, crushed chili seeds, crushed fennel seeds and turmeric. Served with red lentil and spinach daal. Could up the heat count as the missus is out this evening.

                                                                                                                                                                                              3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Paprikaboy
                                                                                                                                                                                                Harters RE: Paprikaboy Dec 20, 2013 02:56 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                Is that your own creation on the daal, PB - or have you blagged a recipe from somewhere. Like the sound of the spinach addition.

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Harters
                                                                                                                                                                                                  Paprikaboy RE: Harters Dec 21, 2013 03:14 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                  H, it's an adaptation of a daal I learned to cook in Sri Lanka.
                                                                                                                                                                                                  Don't really do measurements on this one but here's the recipe if you're interested.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Red lentils
                                                                                                                                                                                                  Coconut Milk
                                                                                                                                                                                                  Frozen Spinach
                                                                                                                                                                                                  Curry powder
                                                                                                                                                                                                  Mustard seeds
                                                                                                                                                                                                  Half cinnamon stick
                                                                                                                                                                                                  Fresh curry leave.
                                                                                                                                                                                                  Garam masala
                                                                                                                                                                                                  Salt and sugar to taste.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Fry off the mustard seeds and curry leaves for a minute or so on a very high heat. Turn to meduim heat. Add sliced onion and fry until translucent. Put in the curry powder and fry off add a little water to prevent the powder burning. Cook out for a couple of mins and add the lentils (after rinsing a couple of times) stir and add a tin of coconut milk and some water. Add some salt and sugar and the cinnamon stick. After about 10 mins take out the cinnamon (otherwise I find it a bit overpowering) and add some discs of frozen spinach-usually about 5 or 6 (this is for enough daal for 4 people).
                                                                                                                                                                                                  After another 10 mins the daal should be cooked. Check for seasoning and add garam masala at the last minute and stir in.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Paprikaboy
                                                                                                                                                                                                    Harters RE: Paprikaboy Dec 21, 2013 04:58 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                    Consider it blagged. Thanks.

                                                                                                                                                                                              2. foodieX2 RE: roxlet Dec 20, 2013 03:11 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                Dinner tonight is entertaining my BIL and his college age boys. I am keep it very simple.

                                                                                                                                                                                                We had a rib eye roast from our cow that I sliced into thick steaks. They have been seasoned and coming to room temp. Nicer temps means we can grill them!

                                                                                                                                                                                                The potatoes have had their first bake and are cooling. Ill cut them half and them mash the flesh with butter, sour cream, cheese and stuff back into the skins. Then bake and sprinkle with crumbled bacon

                                                                                                                                                                                                Lastly are my all time fave-Sichuan green beans. So easy and quick but really good with steak

                                                                                                                                                                                                Oh and LW- there will be wine!

                                                                                                                                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: foodieX2
                                                                                                                                                                                                  LindaWhit RE: foodieX2 Dec 21, 2013 02:31 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Good girl on the wine. I had some (some? LOL) last night as well. :-D

                                                                                                                                                                                                2. steve h. RE: roxlet Dec 20, 2013 04:10 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                  I went to the fishmonger today to drop off my Christmas Eve order. They had some Chilean Seabass (Patagonian Toothfish) in the cold case so that's WFD.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Deb is working on the tomato/anchovy/garlic/olive oil salad that will serve as the sauce. The salad/sauce is a riff on an Epicurious recipe:


                                                                                                                                                                                                  Rice will be on the side. Wine will be on the table.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Edited to add: It's a Wonderful Life will be on the plasma tonight:
                                                                                                                                                                                                  Zuzu's petals; George lassos the moon; Every time a bell rings an angel gets his wings; and so on. Corny stuff but I love it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. Cherylptw RE: roxlet Dec 20, 2013 05:51 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                    Tonight's meal was fried shrimp; served with buttered peas and a baker for the DF; leftover cheesy egg noodles and a salad of iceberg, spinach, cherry tomatoes, shredded carrots and Caesar dressing for me.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. MamasCooking RE: roxlet Dec 20, 2013 06:04 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                      I am dining on a small medium rareT bone steak later tonight. With a baked russet potato with butter....romaine salad with marinated artichoke hearts.....scallions and thinly sliced radishes.....drizzled with a lemony vinaigrette. Possibly some steamed whole carrots and a huge cold orange for later.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. suzigirl RE: roxlet Dec 20, 2013 06:24 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                        As roxlets last question asks "How is the season affecting the meals you are making?"
                                                                                                                                                                                                        I just got my list yesterday for my bf's holiday requests. I had to shop in the seventh circle of hell today. I had to remind myself I love him a few times today. First time was at Best Buys when the line was about thirty deep and the power went out and for about fifteen minutes there was no registers. Then it was one for about a half an hour before i got waited on. I chatted with a nice woman in line that made it less painful. On to Home Depot to have the grumpiest employee ever to help me find the things I needed. I love my man. On to Harbor Freight Tools to find the only employee there that doesn't know about tools. He asked me what a Chanel lock was. Like I do? I love my man. I went to about six places looking for a "nice" keychain. I found Florida keychains everywhere. I think the carwash is getting a visit tomorrow. What is a nice keychain? Sufficiently frustrated, I am ordering a Rico's eat my pie pizza. That's how it is affecting my meals. Most of my stuff is wrapped now and I just have my baking to do. Peanutbutter blossoms to start and some window panes and dipped pretzels. Now I am awaiting a pepperoni pizza with extra sauce and cheese. And drinking a heavy handed pour of vodka and limeade to shake off the retail shopping day. No, I am not being a bah humbug, just a weary shopper. I killed a quarter tank of gas today just around town. Woof. Please be good pizza.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        38 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: suzigirl
                                                                                                                                                                                                          eight_inch_pestle RE: suzigirl Dec 20, 2013 08:13 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Dunno if they can still ship by Xmas, but I like this store a lot and they sell "nice" keychains. You have to enter an email to access but they don't bother you with spam.


                                                                                                                                                                                                          Otherwise I'd try the men's shop at someplace like Nordstrom for something like Jack Spade:


                                                                                                                                                                                                          Pizza and vodka-limemade is a great way to decompress from a day of holiday shopping.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: eight_inch_pestle
                                                                                                                                                                                                            suzigirl RE: eight_inch_pestle Dec 21, 2013 08:46 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Thanks a bunch for the links. I am checking them out now.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: suzigirl
                                                                                                                                                                                                              eight_inch_pestle RE: suzigirl Dec 21, 2013 01:51 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Sure thing. Hope you find something.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: suzigirl
                                                                                                                                                                                                            MidwesternerTT RE: suzigirl Dec 21, 2013 04:42 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                            What are your window panes cookies - recipe, please?
                                                                                                                                                                                                            Lines everywhere were long Friday, including at my grocery store where the parking lot was full mid-day (usually quiet enough to get a front row spot). And at the bookstore where a cashier kept having to explain to info-request-interrupters she was seasonal cashier-only help and sending them over to the info desk. At the huge hardware store I got confidently mis-directed (6 aisles off) by someone at the information desk.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Chatting with others in the line is a good way to help yourself (and them) de-stress a bit. Beer with chili for supper also helps.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: MidwesternerTT
                                                                                                                                                                                                              suzigirl RE: MidwesternerTT Dec 21, 2013 08:52 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                              I have a classic sugar cookie that i roll out and cut into rounds and then cut out another small round in the center. Crush maybe twenty Jolly Rancher candies in a zip bag. Put a small mound on a silpat or parchment and put the cookie over the moundso the center circle has the candy showing. When you bake them the candy melts and looks like stained glass. And they taste great.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: suzigirl
                                                                                                                                                                                                                suzigirl RE: suzigirl Dec 21, 2013 01:19 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Found the recipe for the dough.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                2/3 c room temp butter
                                                                                                                                                                                                                1 c white sugar
                                                                                                                                                                                                                1/2 tsp vanilla
                                                                                                                                                                                                                2 LG eggs
                                                                                                                                                                                                                3 c flour, AP
                                                                                                                                                                                                                2 tsp baking powder
                                                                                                                                                                                                                1/3 c milk

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Set oven for 350°
                                                                                                                                                                                                                Cream butter and sugar. Stir in vanilla and eggs. Sift flour and baking powder. Add half of the egg mixture and stir. Add milk and stir. Add second half of the eggs. When combined spoon out on plastic wrap and roll and chill. Cuts into three dozen cookies. Crush forty multi colored Jolly Ranchers or Starlights from brach's. Cut and fill as described above. Bake for 6 to 7 minutes at 350°.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Hope you like them. I like to bake off the center button cookies and ice them and sprinkle them with sanding sugar so they don't go to waste. They take maybe four minutes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: suzigirl
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Cherylptw RE: suzigirl Dec 21, 2013 06:23 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  My daughter & I are baking cookies on Christmas Eve...I'm making your cookies! Thanks for posting the recipe.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Cherylptw
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    suzigirl RE: Cherylptw Dec 21, 2013 06:29 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I think they are fun because they are beautiful and you get mini cookies as a bonus. Win win.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: suzigirl
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    rabaja RE: suzigirl Dec 21, 2013 08:23 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Another to add to my short list this coming Monday. Thank you!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: rabaja
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      suzigirl RE: rabaja Dec 21, 2013 08:38 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      For you, if you get pressed for time you can always use refridgerated cookie dough. It cuts the time alot.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: suzigirl
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        rabaja RE: suzigirl Dec 22, 2013 08:34 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Thanks for the tip!
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I actually love your dough recipe in that I don't have to roll and cut.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Forming a log, freezing and cutting off what I need is just my speed these days.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: suzigirl
                                                                                                                                                                                                                linguafood RE: suzigirl Dec 21, 2013 12:44 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Here's to good pizza!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  suzigirl RE: linguafood Dec 21, 2013 01:21 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The pizza made all right with the world. Sometimes you just need a night off and a big ass drink.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: suzigirl
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    linguafood RE: suzigirl Dec 21, 2013 02:23 PM


                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: suzigirl
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  roxlet RE: suzigirl Dec 21, 2013 01:33 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Your bf is a lucky guy, suzi! Above and beyond. Above and beyond.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    suzigirl RE: roxlet Dec 21, 2013 03:46 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Thanks roxlet. I survived. Not entirely unscathed, but still sane. He had to wait til the last minute. Ugh. I love my man, I love my man. ;-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: suzigirl
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      roxlet RE: suzigirl Dec 21, 2013 03:58 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Those are my least favorite kinds of stores. I am filled with an almost uncontrollable desire to sit down somewhere and cry when I'm in the Home Depot.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        suzigirl RE: roxlet Dec 21, 2013 04:05 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Man, you said it! Harbor Freight tools wasn't any fun either.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: suzigirl
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          rjbh20 RE: suzigirl Dec 21, 2013 04:42 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          That's because you're a girl.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: rjbh20
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            suzigirl RE: rjbh20 Dec 21, 2013 04:46 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            You caught that , huh? I am a complete girl when it comes to those places. Deer in the headlights and all.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: rjbh20
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              acssss RE: rjbh20 Dec 22, 2013 10:11 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Not fair! I love car shows, the home depot **and** getting my hands dirty in the garage under the hood. I'm an engineer AND a girl!... and there is an increasingly number of us all over the world, so watch out :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: acssss
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                mariacarmen RE: acssss Dec 22, 2013 07:30 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                yeah, totally jealous of your and weezie's "ilk" - i'm not so gifted, though i'd like to be. but only if it just happened. if i had to learn it all now... which obviously means i'm not into it. but still, jealous!!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: acssss
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  MamasCooking RE: acssss Dec 22, 2013 09:12 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I love it!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: suzigirl
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                MamasCooking RE: suzigirl Dec 21, 2013 08:34 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                My adult son was drooling last summer when I gave him the mini catalogue Harbor Freight sends me every few weeks with sales items. I detest that store it stinks... it smells like rubber hoses.... grease and industrial strength guy stuff:( Boring!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: MamasCooking
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  suzigirl RE: MamasCooking Dec 21, 2013 08:52 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Hehehe. Perfect description. I felt like I was the only girl in an ocean of testosterone. Way out of my element. I said one time to my bf that I'm not a girly girl. He said "oh baby, you're a girly girl." He's right.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              3. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                gingershelley RE: roxlet Dec 22, 2013 12:29 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I am SO lucky - I have an old-school locally owned hardware store exactly 1 mile from my house that carries everything you would need, and in each dept. is a couple of guys who worked in that field; i.e., plumbing is staffed by an ex-plumber, electrical by a retired electrician.... they answer all my questions, tell me what I need to fix stuff, and we flirt back and forth. Being a 'girly' single homeowner, they have kept my house from falling down around me for 10+ years now. God bless all my 'boyfriends' (most of whom are old enough to be my dad) at McClendon's Hardware!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              4. re: suzigirl
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                juliejulez RE: suzigirl Dec 21, 2013 04:57 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                This is why I do all my shopping on Amazon... SO is getting a really nice DeWalt power drill and a 4 box drill bit and screwdriver set... all from the comfort of my cubicle at work :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: juliejulez
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  suzigirl RE: juliejulez Dec 21, 2013 05:04 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Had my handsome man given me a list when i started asking months ago I would have done just that. It turns out two of the things he wanted were online only items that he had me looking for in the store. It made for an interesting visit since the guy helping me had a short fuse. I am hanging on to his list. If he doesn't buy them himself before May(his bday), my online muscles will be getting a workout.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: suzigirl
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  weezieduzzit RE: suzigirl Dec 22, 2013 08:37 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  C'mon now... I can't be the only woman here with a closet full of dresses and my own power tools! LW?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: weezieduzzit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    LindaWhit RE: weezieduzzit Dec 22, 2013 09:18 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    LOL! No dresses, but I do have an electric drill, and I know how to use it. :D

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: weezieduzzit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      juliejulez RE: weezieduzzit Dec 22, 2013 09:45 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I came into my relationship with more tools than him! Only have a couple dresses though. Shoes are a different story...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I'm just not that into hardware stores. I don't like how most of the workers talk down to me, assuming because I'm a younger female.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: juliejulez
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        boyzoma RE: juliejulez Dec 23, 2013 12:31 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I too came into my marriage with many more power tools. Plus my own king-sized water bed with 6 drawers under each side and a full sized headboard - which I BUILT. Plus more cookware than he could only dream about. Oh, and shoes? My DH calls me the Imelda Marcos of tennis shoes (I used to work for 20+ years for a major shoe company and I happened to be their sample size). :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: boyzoma
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Berheenia RE: boyzoma Dec 23, 2013 02:55 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I came with $400.00 worth of tools thanks to the CETA program which was teaching me a trade. Some 35 years later they still come in handy. A carpenter just commented on our vintage electric drill with a manual chuck.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: weezieduzzit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        gingershelley RE: weezieduzzit Dec 22, 2013 12:31 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Plus 1 Weezie; tho I still would rather cook with my kitchen 'power tools', for someone else and watch them work the power tools having to do with fix-it and construction... it takes me twice as long as someone who does it alot.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: suzigirl
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    LindaWhit RE: suzigirl Dec 21, 2013 02:33 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    THAT is a long day, suzi! I do hope that pepperoni pizza was good - the vodka & limeade sounds like a good starter!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: LindaWhit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      suzigirl RE: LindaWhit Dec 21, 2013 03:49 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      The pepperoni pizza was exellent. And the vodka limeade was the perfect was to shake the day off. I will be having another shortly.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: suzigirl
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      gingershelley RE: suzigirl Dec 22, 2013 12:25 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      That does sounds like the 7th circle of hell.....sorry suzigirl!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: gingershelley
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        suzigirl RE: gingershelley Dec 22, 2013 12:49 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I lived. :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    3. h
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Harters RE: roxlet Dec 21, 2013 05:01 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Classic roast beef dinner. Not for nothing is French slang for we Brits "les rosbifs"..

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Nice piece of topside. There'll be roast potatoes, roast parsnips and steamed greens.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Starter is going to be a leaf salad. And, for dessert, Mrs H is making a gooseberry & orange drizzle cake which, served warm, will be pudding and cold as cake with a cuppa of coffee. .

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Harters
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        PHREDDY RE: Harters Dec 21, 2013 05:48 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        You mean a cuppa of cawfee!
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        The pudding sounds yummy...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. r
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        rjbh20 RE: roxlet Dec 21, 2013 09:32 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Temps to approach 70 tomorrow. Time for a Whole Hog Production...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: rjbh20
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          steve h. RE: rjbh20 Dec 21, 2013 02:27 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Over the top!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Well done.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: rjbh20
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            acssss RE: rjbh20 Dec 22, 2013 08:50 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            That is so funny rjbh20. It reminds me when we were invited to a very affluent neighborhood party in Italy, where they brought a whole pig to the very fancy/decorated table and placed it right in the center (like we do with a turkey on Thanksgiving). Everyone was ooohing and ahhing and I had to excuse myself. Its snout was right in my face... and all I could think of was Babe.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. foodieX2 RE: roxlet Dec 21, 2013 11:29 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Hi everyone! Do any of you have experience with wild goose? If so can you help me on my other thread?


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Thanks WFD friends!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. Berheenia RE: roxlet Dec 21, 2013 01:06 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Today we braved shopping and I have a tip. Target is not crowded and giving a 10% discount on your purchase. We had to buy stockings and a few toys and paid cash.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              We also went to a big supermarket and picked up a couple of hams and the fixings for Christmas dinner and dropped them off at the Homeless Veterans shelter, where a big team of cooks was serving a hot meal. This was our present to ourselves. We got to meet some of the older vets and this place does a terrific job.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              We have a tree - on the front porch. Does that count? It has to get set up and decorated probably Monday night.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I am behind with baking but am going to make a bundt cake for the coffee hour after the Christmas Pageant at church tomorrow.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              WFD is a re-tooled chicken pot pie with a broccoli and blue cheese dressing salad. And wine. Bulleit for the hubs.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Berheenia
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                boyzoma RE: Berheenia Dec 21, 2013 01:18 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Oh, how wonderful for your donation. Bless you and I'm sure they were glad for the gift. The tree counts! And bundt cake and your re-tooled dinner sounds great. Tis the season to be thankful.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Berheenia
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  suzigirl RE: Berheenia Dec 21, 2013 01:28 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  What a wonderful thing to do. And the perfect place to donate to. They gave to us. Its the least we can do to give back. Happy holidays.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Berheenia
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    foodieX2 RE: Berheenia Dec 21, 2013 01:29 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    What a great donation! Both of time and money. Truly the spirit of the season.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Berheenia
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      LindaWhit RE: Berheenia Dec 21, 2013 02:36 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      A small thank you for all the vets have done for us. A very good donation, Berheenia.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Berheenia
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        ChristinaMason RE: Berheenia Dec 22, 2013 01:59 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        What a kind hound you are!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. foodieX2 RE: roxlet Dec 21, 2013 01:34 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Tonight's dinner is leftovers from last nights feast. I am going make steak sandwiches. Instead of mayo I'll use the leftover horseradish sauce. I didn't use 2 of the potatoes so those will become oven fries and with the leftover green beans on side.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: foodieX2
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          suzigirl RE: foodieX2 Dec 21, 2013 04:13 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I say take advantage. I know I like to braise on the rare occasion it gets cold here.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: suzigirl
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            suzigirl RE: suzigirl Dec 21, 2013 05:08 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Oops. Somehow this posted here. It was meant for roxlet down thread regarding her steak dinner.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: foodieX2
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            acssss RE: foodieX2 Dec 21, 2013 04:51 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Green beans, fries, and steak sandwiches! YUM on all three!! Horseradish sauce is a favorite for us on steak sandwiches AND on fries! We used to go to a movie theater in Framingham, MA that served fries with horseradish and ever since, I've been hooked.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          3. roxlet RE: roxlet Dec 21, 2013 01:44 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Unseasonably warm weather means steak on the grill tonight, and rjbh20 is waving the BBQ flag for tomorrow. Not very Christmassy, but this may well be the last warm temperatures we see for quite a while. With the steak will be an arugula salad with goat cheese and walnuts.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              boyzoma RE: roxlet Dec 21, 2013 01:49 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I'm with you on the steak bandwagon. DH is doing a really nice sized T-bone that we are going to share. To go with will be a nice loaded baked (grilled) potato and some sauteed mushrooms in Marsala & butter.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                LindaWhit RE: roxlet Dec 21, 2013 02:37 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I had my steak (Prime rib) last night Enjoy the uber-warm weather - you'll be 20 degrees warmer than us in New England!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  suzigirl RE: roxlet Dec 21, 2013 05:10 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Somehow my response to you posted to foodieX2.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. LindaWhit RE: roxlet Dec 21, 2013 03:06 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The Christmas party went *very* well. Prime Rib, Chicken Marsala, Butternut Squash Ravioli with Gorgonzola Fig Cream Sauce, Rice Pilaf, Roasted Vegetables, Rolls, Caesar Salad - all was enjoyed by those in attendance. I had the prime rib and ravioli - both were amazingly good - although there was a whole prime rib left over (I'm not sure why the restaurant thought to have two for the number of people we were - kinda frustrating to know we paid for it but no one gets to enjoy it. They said they don't throw it away; it is repurposed, although I'm not sure how. :-/ And wouldn't that mean they're double-selling it?) Open bar all night; good chit-chat with employees, spouses and POSSLQs.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  And no headache this morning, thanks to including water drinking amongst my wine drinking....and several Advil before I went to sleep.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Errands today - got my nephew's Christmas presents out of the way, as well as a couple of friends. Tonight's dinner will be chicken thighs that I'll season with salt, pepper, and dried thyme, and pan-sear until the skin is crispy brown, and then into the oven to finish. The fond left in the pan will be deglazed with a bit of wine, which will then be whisked with some dijon mustard and heavy cream and a pinch more thyme for a sauce to drizzle on the chicken.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Roasted broccoli, tossed in olive oil, salt, and pepper, and Armenian rice pilaf as the sides. I'll be using a handful of corn pasta in place of the vermicelli.


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  And despite there having been wine last night, there will be more tonight. It's Saturday, and I'm off until the 26th. Works for me.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: LindaWhit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    acssss RE: LindaWhit Dec 21, 2013 04:53 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Dr. Oz (never mind if you like his show, he is a leading cardiologist in NYC) says you should have a glass of wine every day for heart health! So I do :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. juliejulez RE: roxlet Dec 21, 2013 03:30 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Well I have done some sort of cooking the past 2 days... I dunno if it totally counts, but at this point, any effort I make is good, right? Last night, after doing sugar cookie cutouts that didn't turn out well (serves me right to try a new recipe when I had a perfectly good old one), I did some store-bought tortellini with the last of the jarred sauce I had in my fridge. Garlic bread from the freezer case at the store on the side.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Today I've been baking up a storm, took Winnie to the vet for her final round of shots, doing laundry, and finished up wrapping our gifts, so dinner is also easy, and will utilize the already warm oven.... baked potatoes topped with ham (yes, still working our way through the ham from weeks ago), broccoli, and cheddar cheese.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Tomorrow we hit the road! Hoping the weather is decent and sure hope we can fit everything in my car... 2 dogs, all the puppy stuff (she sure travels heavy with her cage, fold up pen, puppy pads, toys, food, ugh... our old guy travels pretty light with just his bed), all the gifts, cookies, and our own daily wear suitcases, and the bag with all our snow gear. Glad I have an SUV now.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: juliejulez
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      LindaWhit RE: juliejulez Dec 21, 2013 03:46 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Safe travels, julie!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: juliejulez
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        MamasCooking RE: juliejulez Dec 21, 2013 05:09 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Happy Holidays Julie:)Winnie and your *old guy* sound like dolls.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: juliejulez
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          suzigirl RE: juliejulez Dec 21, 2013 05:13 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Good luck with the puppies on the road. Have a great trip.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: juliejulez
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            gingershelley RE: juliejulez Dec 22, 2013 12:43 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Happy travels and have a fun Christmas Julie! Sounds like it will be a great trip:)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. Njchicaa RE: roxlet Dec 21, 2013 03:56 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I took a container out of the freezer a few days ago that I thought was Beef Bourguignon. Nope. It was chili! Oops. Tonight I'm using it as a filling for enchiladas. I pulled two homemade chicken and cheese tamales out of the freezer and they have been in the oven on low for at least an hour now.... Enchiladas and tamales will be served with Gulf Coast Style White Rice.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Njchicaa
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              MidwesternerTT RE: Njchicaa Dec 21, 2013 07:00 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              New Year's resolution - label and date all items as they go into the freezer. Especially those I think "I couldn't possibly EVER be confused about what this is". Kind of funny how a frosted banana half resembles a chunk of cooked chicken.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: MidwesternerTT
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                gingershelley RE: MidwesternerTT Dec 22, 2013 12:45 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                MWTT, that was my resolution for 2013, and it SURE helped reduce my freezer wastage! Well worth getting in the habit.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I bought freezer tape, and two kinds of markers and put them in a drawer very convenient to the drawer of containers, and that helped alot too;)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. suzigirl RE: roxlet Dec 21, 2013 04:21 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Ham steak with pineapple chutney? Pineapple cooked down with brown sugar, apple cider vinegar and cloves. Gruyere au gratin potatoes and broccoli with butter. I was concidering corn bread but i end up wasting the leftovers because i can't convince my bf that cornbread stuffing is a good thing.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: suzigirl
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                MidwesternerTT RE: suzigirl Dec 22, 2013 04:28 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                The ham steak/pineapple is on the menu here for Christmas Day. For next time -- Cornbread freezes nicely and makes a great side for chili later.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. Cherylptw RE: roxlet Dec 21, 2013 06:34 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I spent part of the day making partial dishes for DF to have in the freezer so he won't resort to take out EVERY day I'm gone out of tow. Baked chicken, meatloaf, pork chops with onions, bell peppers & tomatoes, chicken & pastry and baked turkey wings are ready to go in the freezer. There's also a few pigs feet left from Thanksgiving already frozen as well as a hunk of beef roast from last week with gravy, rice and peas frozen. So he should be good for a while.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                While I don't normally cook on Saturdays, I put a few burgers in the oven with the other things I cooked and that was dinner.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Cherylptw
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  suzigirl RE: Cherylptw Dec 21, 2013 06:53 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  What a feast for DF. He should be full and happy while you are gone. I hope you and your daughter like the cookies. Have a great time.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. mariacarmen RE: roxlet Dec 22, 2013 09:15 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Have some 4505 Meats chorizo burgers i picked up at the FM on thurs., and some onion buns to go on. Not sure if i want cheese on the burgers or not, but i think i will mix up another batch of sherry vinegar mayo for them, but leave off the smoked paprika this time since the boighus already have an abundance. Baked sweet potaoes with butter and minced scallions on the side, and some garlicky stewed kale. That's what i'm thinking right now.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: mariacarmen
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    gingershelley RE: mariacarmen Dec 22, 2013 12:47 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Yum - I'll be right over for dinner.... my plane stops in SFO to change for LAX - do you think they will mind if I just leave for a while to eat a burger with you?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: gingershelley
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      mariacarmen RE: gingershelley Dec 22, 2013 07:32 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      haha - would be great!
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      however, the BF ATE one of the burgers for lunch while i was gone, so instead of making him eat the same again for dinner, we're going out. i'll do it tomorrow.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      enjoy your trip gs!!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. weezieduzzit RE: roxlet Dec 22, 2013 09:26 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Ripe mangos and avocados were turned into a salsa (with lime, serranos and cherry peppers from the garden, red onion, salt,) for some pan fried salmon. Kale and chard from the garden were sliced into ribbons and quickly sauteed, a small butternut squash from a neighbors garden was baked. It was super yummy and totally hit all of the cravings.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Today, 2 chickens will be poached and the meat pulled, stock will follow later- the crockpot will be in use on a 5 pound chuck roast. Both are being turned into tamale fillings. I bought 16 pounds of prepared masa last from the local mexican market (69 cents a pound, I can't make it any cheaper or any better since they whip the daylights out of it with those huge industrial mixers- it makes excellent light tamales.) Several pounds of anaheim chiles will be charred and peeled to go into the chicken filling. Assembly will probably start tomorrow, I want to wait until Christmas Eve to have any for dinner.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Several pans of Christmas Crack will be made tonight for the man to take to work tomorrow, the rum cake will be glazed again.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    If I can get away with it I'll be picking up Indian for dinner. :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    9 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: weezieduzzit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      linguafood RE: weezieduzzit Dec 22, 2013 09:33 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Love the combo of mango and avocado. The champagne mango in particular is so similar in texture to avocado. And a great condiment for salmon! I've made ceviche with these ingredients once. Lovely.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: weezieduzzit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        JerryMe RE: weezieduzzit Dec 22, 2013 12:08 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Making your own tamales is very impressive - pre-made masa or not. I bow to your skills, Weezie!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        We did Xmas 'lite' this year. SO put up the lights. I helped (found it in my storage) the pre-lit Xmas tree for DS and his GF (girlfriend) and her kids. SO and I's presents were: He had to get that weird growth on his back checked out by the Doc. You know the kind of growth that SCREAMS "get this checked out!" Yeah - he got it checked out and it's all good. TG (Thank God) - It's been keeping me awake at night.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        My present to him was to get a new edge put on his ax - Duty was done at the Farmer's Market yesterday am and he (SO) is thrilled. Probably the first time it's been sharpened in three years.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I took DS and GF to a grocery store that they'd never been to - I saved them $20+ in coupons. They eat A LOT of processed foods and they were happy with the savings.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        They and the kids are coming over Xmas evening - we've promised an outdoor fire (providing it's not a 'no burn day') and hot cocoa for the kids. Eggnog and brandy for the adults. If I'm motivated, I want to make these http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo... I stopped by the Asian market for ginger and crystallized ginger and found out that 'ginger candy' is not the same as crystallized. Which is now on my list of shit I still gotta get. There's no way I'll try and return it. I don't want to get scolded in a language I don't understand.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Dinner tonight is ham and bean soup. We've got leftover biscuits for side.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        A funny aside - We've had the ham in the frig since before T-Day and SO has been eying it since. So I baked it up, he happened to bring home dinner and it got put in the frig. After a few days of sandwiches, I came home to a ziplock with the bone, a ziplock with all of the fat and skin and that was it! I was beside myself - WTF?? He'd sliced all of the meat off and I couldn't find it in the fridge. Later, when I was bitching about the lack of meat, he called me out on it - BS! There are two full bags of ham in the frig. It was pretty funny.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Piggybacking on Weezie's note - Christmas Crack will be made at DS's house, on Friday, after I take the kids to the park. We've (SO and ) got a party to go to on Saturday and DS's home is WAY better set up for assembly cooking / baking. I'm sure the kids will like the end product as well.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: weezieduzzit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          acssss RE: weezieduzzit Dec 22, 2013 12:18 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Do you still have Kale and Chard in the garden?
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Yum... Chard, Butternut squash, Kale and what a great salsa!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: acssss
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            weezieduzzit RE: acssss Dec 22, 2013 12:35 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I can't even grow greens until October at the earliest- too hot before then and they grow through April or May if its not too hot by then. Even planting lettuces in October I lost all of them, they all bolted because it was too warm. It is forecast to be 78F on Christmas, apparently it's BBQ ribs for Christmas dinner this year! MIL has *finally* given up the need for a "traditional" dinner and hopefully the crazy that goes with preparing it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: weezieduzzit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              acssss RE: weezieduzzit Dec 22, 2013 12:52 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              While I love the snow, I wouldn't mind having some fresh kale and chard from my garden right about now.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: weezieduzzit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            gingershelley RE: weezieduzzit Dec 22, 2013 12:51 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Sounds excellent weezie! We do tamales for Christmas Eve at my sister's in South Pas, but we get ours at this small mexican market that has a line down the block - most people are local Spanish speaking neighborhood people, and they are just picking up masa to make their own tamales at home (we buy several dozen ready to re-heat over steam at home). It's a great scene. I'll take a picture Christmas Eve when we go there to pick em' up on our way home from the Getty:)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: gingershelley
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              weezieduzzit RE: gingershelley Dec 22, 2013 06:54 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              We're starting the Christmas Eve tamale tradition, too. I grew up in the desert Southwest so to me it isn't the holidays without them.I always make them some time during the season but I'm going to make a point to make them specifically for Christmas Eve from now on.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: weezieduzzit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              MamasCooking RE: weezieduzzit Dec 22, 2013 02:16 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I assisted a very dear friend of mine a few years ago when I was younger in making pork tamales. It was so much work and they were so fragrant and delicious. Those are some kitchen warrior skills you are displaying Weez:)BTW it is around 68 degrees up here in N California in the Lodi area. Sunny and not warm but nice:)!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: MamasCooking
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                weezieduzzit RE: MamasCooking Dec 22, 2013 06:52 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Tamales ARE a lot of work but I really like them and they freeze so well that it's worth it. Plus, since I generally eat low carb I can make them light on the masa/ heavy on the filling so I can enjoy them. :) When you buy them there's always way too much masa.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            3. janetofreno RE: roxlet Dec 22, 2013 12:47 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Well, Sunday night's dinner is a standard in our house: soup and some crusty French bread, maybe a salad. Tonight's soup is potato-kale, as we have both to use up. And probably a salad of some sort with it. I have to bring cookies to the office Christmas lunch Tuesday (we have lunch and then leave early on Christmas Eve), and I found a good recipe online for triple ginger snaps. The recipe makes plenty, so we just might have to try a few for dessert tonight:-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: janetofreno
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                gini RE: janetofreno Dec 23, 2013 06:37 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I love the tradition of soup on Sundays! My man thinks that soup is never hearty enough for a meal. I wonder if adding a big loaf of bread would change his mind.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: gini
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  janetofreno RE: gini Dec 23, 2013 12:13 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Maybe bread and cheese, or bread and some type of cold cuts if he likes that? If it were up to my husband we would eat soup every single night of the week......

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. gingershelley RE: roxlet Dec 22, 2013 01:22 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Cooking here last few days was mainly a private chef event I did for a client's dinner party Friday; Roasted ducks with a fig and port sauce, 'JF's' potatoes' - aka potatoe's daphiniose (NO cheese!), a chicory/fennel/arugula salad with walnut oil/citrus dressing, and a hazelnut merangue layered with a frozen raspberry mousse for dessert.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                She just warmed it up and served with her own roasted brussel sprouts on the side.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                11 hour shift yesterday chef-assisting at this huge holiday party yesterday - home by 9pm, and voila - Christmas is on!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Packing and cleaning today, and the only cooking will be trying to clean out the fridge - probably chili or chicken thighs tonight.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Then fly off to South Pasadena tomorrow morning. Dad, Step-mom, her son and his wife and their 4 kids (ages 1-6!) all are flying in as well. To my sisters big comfy Craftsman for a bursting-at-the-seams family week!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Tomorrow is also my birthday - the big 50 - aaaccck! Requested lasagna and ceasar salad for dinner (something my very busy sister can manage, or pick up from a gourmet take-out easily). After all 15 of us have dinner, most of us are going out to the chinese foot massage place for some much-deserved pampering after a day spent with the not-so-friendly skies.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I am sure I will be doing some cooking and kid-wrangling while there, and also enjoying my sisters HS n college age kids - all of whom are absurdly talented at music, drama and sports... there is bound to be much music and singing to catch us all up on their latest. My niece and nephew both write music, play piano, guitar and the Uke, and have angel's voices so it is a pleasure to listen to them perform.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Will check in from hopefully-warm SoCal!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                14 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: gingershelley
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  suzigirl RE: gingershelley Dec 22, 2013 01:31 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Happy birthday gingershelley. Sounds like you have a good time planned for the holidays. Enjoy yourself.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: gingershelley
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    linguafood RE: gingershelley Dec 22, 2013 01:45 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Hippy bathday, Shelley! Lasagna and caesar sound perfect.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: gingershelley
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      LindaWhit RE: gingershelley Dec 22, 2013 01:48 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      A VERY happy birthday to you, gingershel! And sounds like amazing amazing food that you helped to cater. Have a wonderful family get-together. :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: gingershelley
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Berheenia RE: gingershelley Dec 22, 2013 01:52 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        50 is the new 30! Have a happy bday!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: gingershelley
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          MamasCooking RE: gingershelley Dec 22, 2013 02:11 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Happy Birthday To You!!!!! And many more:) Have fun with your family and smuggle in a few flasks of good booze just in case:) For medicinal purposes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: gingershelley
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            roxlet RE: gingershelley Dec 22, 2013 03:45 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Have a happy birthday!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: gingershelley
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              acssss RE: gingershelley Dec 22, 2013 03:55 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Hey Happy B-day Shelley! I am now officially in the 50's club as well - although I'm very happy about it. Hey, I figure I'd rather be 50 than dead :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: gingershelley
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                ChristinaMason RE: gingershelley Dec 22, 2013 06:29 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                happy happy! lots of great cooking going on there. that fig and port sauce sounds great.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: gingershelley
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  mariacarmen RE: gingershelley Dec 22, 2013 07:37 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  happy early bday, gs!! 50's not so bad.... said no one ever!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  just kidding! i have a feeling you'll do it with style and energy!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: gingershelley
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    steve h. RE: gingershelley Dec 22, 2013 07:43 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Happy birthday!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: gingershelley
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      weezieduzzit RE: gingershelley Dec 22, 2013 08:01 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Happy Birthday fellow December baby! Enjoy your trip, the weather is freaking fabulous out here this week!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: gingershelley
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        gini RE: gingershelley Dec 23, 2013 06:38 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Happy birthday!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: gingershelley
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          boyzoma RE: gingershelley Dec 23, 2013 05:42 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Wishing you an oh so happy Birthday GS. Enjoy!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: gingershelley
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            foodieX2 RE: gingershelley Dec 24, 2013 04:45 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Haooy Happy!!!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. ChristinaMason RE: roxlet Dec 22, 2013 02:05 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I just don't know WFD. I've been making cookies (apricot rugelach and peanut butter) most of the day, and I'm tired. In the fridge we have chicken thighs defrosting, a "rosemary and olive oil" pork tenderloin, broccolini, kale, mesculun, leftover short-grain rice....

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I have every condiment you can think of and a pantry stocked with good things like nasi goreng sauce mix, Japanese curry blocks, TJ's corn, etc. Still not feeling inspired.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: ChristinaMason
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              ChristinaMason RE: ChristinaMason Dec 22, 2013 06:32 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Dinner ended up being none of the above---instead, something I've been craving recently: tuna cakes

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Basically you make a tuna salad and add and egg and bread crumbs, brown in butter on both sides, top with good American cheese and inhale. Ketchup is mandatory (I add Tabasco to mine).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Sides were steamed broccoli with butter and a cozy stracciatella with the leftover rice, egg, a quick chicken broth, and carrot chunks. We picked at a cheese plate (aged gouda and manchego) waiting for dinner to be ready.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Aaah, I feel nice and warm inside. Tomorrow will be the pork tenderloin, asparagus, and salad (if it's still salvageable).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: ChristinaMason
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                suzigirl RE: ChristinaMason Dec 22, 2013 07:21 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Mmm... tuna cakes. I have never run those past the man. I miss those. Why have I neglected these?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: suzigirl
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  ChristinaMason RE: suzigirl Dec 23, 2013 05:23 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  It's hard for me to be objective about them, because they're just so nostalgic for me :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  That said, I think they would be better (lighter) with panko rather than the puverlized dried baguette dust I used...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  And cheddar. I think it's time to switch (even though this was some crazy-fancy Whole Paycheck American cheese).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: ChristinaMason
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  mariacarmen RE: ChristinaMason Dec 22, 2013 07:38 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  i make tuna patties for the Oldster quite often, he's a fan, even though he thinks he doesn't like fish.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. LindaWhit RE: roxlet Dec 22, 2013 02:13 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                It's been a total slug day for me, so I'm not going to do anything that takes a lot of effort tonight for dinner.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                A burger on the grill pan, medium rare, on a toasted English muffin with some cheddar cheese on top, and some potato chips on the side. (Chips on the burger makes for a bit too much crunch with the toasted English muffin.) A small salad of lettuce, carrots, mushrooms and radishes. The dressing will probably be Maple-Balsamic Vinaigrette.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Wine. Yup.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: LindaWhit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  steve h. RE: LindaWhit Dec 22, 2013 02:48 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Sounds good: burgers, chips and salad get high marks on my score sheet. Wine puts it over the top.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Brady is kickin' it, the Giants may actually win a game.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  It's all good.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. suzigirl RE: roxlet Dec 22, 2013 03:17 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Flank steak on the grill. I marinaded it in cumin, chili powder, oregano, salt, pepper,tabasco and lime. Sauted red and green peppers and rice. Tortillas, cheese, salsa, sour cream and limes. Fajitas, just not cooked together.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. linguafood RE: roxlet Dec 22, 2013 03:25 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    We returned from an eventful Philly trip yesterday, the restaurant write-up of which can be found here: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/9287.... My man's talk was successful and garnered a future invitation to give a public lecture, I passed my citizenship test with flying colors (if I dare say so :-D), and the food was overall quite delicious, with a nice anniversary dinner to end it all.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    The hotel at which we usually stay, OTOH, fucked up so badly this time that we will never return, and we ended up switching hotels for our last night. At least we were reimbursed, but only after forcing the issue. Gah.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    When we left yesterday, Philly was bathed in brilliant sunshine and temps in the high 50s (if you can believe it!!), and we stopped in at DiBruno's -- a store I'd like to be locked in for a good month or so with some of my best friends, and eat my way through the cheese cave, the prepared foods section, the meat counter... ah, who are we kidding: ALL of it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    We picked up a bunch of sausages they make in-house (a full list is in the trip report), of which the 2 jalapeño cheddar brats became dinner last night. Side was a diced quarter zuke that was all lonely-like in the fridge along with frozen peas, diced onion, and a can of TJ's awesome corn. Sploosh of white wine, dab o' butter. The snausages were awesome. Of course, how could a cheese-stuffed sausage *not* be?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Tonight we're having some friends over before they all disperse to their respective families for the next few days. There will be some nibbles courtesy of TJ (unexpected cheddar, some spinach & kale bites, tarte d'Alsace, bacon-wrapped scallops, spanakopita), maybe take-out, *definitely* cocktails…. and maybe even a few hands of pokah!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    28 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      suzigirl RE: linguafood Dec 22, 2013 03:30 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Congratulations on passing your test. I can't wait to read the report.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        roxlet RE: linguafood Dec 22, 2013 03:47 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        You're in!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          acssss RE: linguafood Dec 22, 2013 03:48 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Congrats on your citizenship test and glad to hear you had fun despite a few screw ups with hotels and salt :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            steve h. RE: linguafood Dec 22, 2013 03:48 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Very cool.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              LindaWhit RE: linguafood Dec 22, 2013 04:31 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Huge congratulations on passing your citizenship test, lingua! So sorry that the hotel screwed up what sounds like a great trip to Philly.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              And your "nibbly dinner" sounds wonderful. I could fill up easily on nibblies. :-D

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                mariacarmen RE: linguafood Dec 22, 2013 10:31 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                congrats on the man's speech, the good eats, and the path to being one of us slobs almost completed! i expect, however, that you will continue to bring your euro flair to our virtual table.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Harters RE: linguafood Dec 23, 2013 01:31 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Sounds like a great weekend, lingua (hotel apart). Congrats on the citizenship thing - although I shall miss you as a European :-0

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  And congrats to the man. I've done public speaking a few times and it scares the shit out of me every time.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Harters
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    linguafood RE: Harters Dec 23, 2013 10:02 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I am the same way about public speaking. I would even get nauseous back in college when I had to give a paper.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Funny, because I hardly ever get stage fright for my gigs anymore!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    gini RE: linguafood Dec 23, 2013 06:40 AM


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Berheenia RE: linguafood Dec 23, 2013 07:00 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Flying colors! Woot! I often wonder how many of us 'native born' would ace a citizenship test.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Berheenia
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Harters RE: Berheenia Dec 23, 2013 07:09 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        We changed our test in the UK earlier this year. The previous version was much about culture, etc - and I didnt score very well. New version is much more history based, which is sounder ground for me - here's some of the questions - http://www.theguardian.com/uk/quiz/20...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I think the earlier version is probably a better test of whether someone has grasped the basics of our society.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Harters
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          roxlet RE: Harters Dec 23, 2013 08:58 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I got 7 our of 10, so I'd be on the bubble, I guess!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            linguafood RE: roxlet Dec 23, 2013 10:06 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Whoa. 7 out of 10, too. That one was tough.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Harters RE: linguafood Dec 23, 2013 10:25 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Wonder if you both missed out on the same questions?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Harters
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                linguafood RE: Harters Dec 23, 2013 11:15 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                That would be neat to find out. I found myself guessing a lot of the answers....

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Harters
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  roxlet RE: Harters Dec 23, 2013 12:28 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I missed the Queen's anniversary (I thought it was 50 not 60), the athletic event that was contested England recently, and the name of the leader of Parliament or something. It was the last question, I believe.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  juliejulez RE: linguafood Dec 23, 2013 10:52 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I also got 7 out of 10. I wish it would list which ones we missed.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: juliejulez
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    linguafood RE: juliejulez Dec 23, 2013 11:14 AM


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Harters RE: linguafood Dec 23, 2013 12:29 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I'll post the answers later (just in case anyone else wants a try) but, if you've only scored 7, then you just fail the 75% needed so I can't declare anyone an honorary Brit.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Harters
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        linguafood RE: Harters Dec 23, 2013 01:38 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Feh. My mom's (or should that be mum?) got a British passport, as her father was "British-born."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I think I'll be ok with two passports for now '-D

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: Harters
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                LindaWhit RE: Harters Dec 23, 2013 02:10 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I got 9 out of 10. I missed the last one: "What is the title given to the person who chairs the debates in the House of Commons?"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Harters
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Harters RE: Harters Dec 23, 2013 02:15 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Nice to see the mods are full of the festive spirit and are letting us have some leeway on the conversation. My thanks, dear mods, have a great Christmas

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Here's the answers:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1 Stonehenge
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2 Nelson
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  3 Union Jack
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  4 St Andrew
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  5 Poppy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  6 Paralympics
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  7 60
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  8 Opposition
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  9 18
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  10 Speaker

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Harters
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    steve h. RE: Harters Dec 23, 2013 02:45 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Aced it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I'm a big fan of Nelson.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Harters
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      linguafood RE: Harters Dec 23, 2013 03:10 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Ah, so I got 6, 7 and 10 wrong. Wah.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        roxlet RE: linguafood Dec 23, 2013 03:31 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Those are the same ones I got wrong, lingua. I guess you're an American now!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: Harters
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        juliejulez RE: Harters Dec 23, 2013 08:56 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I got 2, 5, and 6 wrong. I can picture that statue in Trafalgar (never been there though), just didn't know the name of the fellow!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Harters
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          gini RE: Harters Dec 24, 2013 06:03 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I got 7 & 9 wrong, but that was still enough to pass!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      3. re: Berheenia
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        linguafood RE: Berheenia Dec 23, 2013 10:03 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        The questions were ridiculously easy:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        - who's the PA governor
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        - where is the statue of liberty
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        - who was the first president
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        - what movement ended segregation
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        - what is one of the responsibilities or duties of a US citizen.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Then I had to read and write the sentence "the president lives in the white house".

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Seriously. I would hope that at least the folks on this thread coulda answered all of the above '-D

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. steve h. RE: roxlet Dec 22, 2013 06:06 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Supper was leftover Chilean sea bass. I gently reheated the thick meat, Deb made rice. There was a leftover sauce/salad of sliced cherry tomatoes, anchovies and so on. The sauce ages well. Wine to wash things down, Sound of Music on the plasma.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: steve h.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        c oliver RE: steve h. Dec 22, 2013 06:13 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        How did you reheat the fish please? Also it was only one continent.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: c oliver
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          steve h. RE: c oliver Dec 22, 2013 06:18 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          In a ceramic dish. I removed the skin. Aluminum foil topped the dish. The oven was set to 300 Fahrenheit. I checked the dish after 12 minutes and maybe added a minute or two more.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: steve h.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            c oliver RE: steve h. Dec 22, 2013 06:40 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Glad to know. I've never tried to reheat fish. Thanks, Steve.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. r
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        rjbh20 RE: roxlet Dec 22, 2013 06:53 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        A remarkably bodacious Whole Hog Production to take advantage of the tropical weather and wrap up 2013. A dozen slabs of back ribs, four steelhead, two large salmon, two pork cushions, one chicken, one turkey and 16 lbs of house- made sausage. Several satisfied customers.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        7 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: rjbh20
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          acssss RE: rjbh20 Dec 22, 2013 07:01 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          What a great way to wrap up the year... on a full stomach!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: rjbh20
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            steve h. RE: rjbh20 Dec 22, 2013 07:01 PM


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: rjbh20
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              LindaWhit RE: rjbh20 Dec 22, 2013 07:20 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Heavens, that all sounds amazing! Your neighbors must love getting that clarion call.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              However, what's a "pork cushion"?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: LindaWhit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                rjbh20 RE: LindaWhit Dec 22, 2013 07:24 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                It's a part of the shoulder. A small muscle about the size of a grapefruit but sort of football shaped.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: rjbh20
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  steve h. RE: rjbh20 Dec 22, 2013 07:27 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Was everything as good as it sounded?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: steve h.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    rjbh20 RE: steve h. Dec 22, 2013 08:04 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I didn't get a chance to taste the sausage after it came out of the pit but it was one of my better efforts going in, so I'm fairly confident. Other than that -- bullseye across the board. Great reviews on the salmon, which got dispatched to a midday Italian dinner.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: rjbh20
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      steve h. RE: rjbh20 Dec 23, 2013 01:51 PM


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. aching RE: roxlet Dec 22, 2013 07:29 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I made pan-roasted chicken thighs and oven-roasted broccoli and cauliflower. Totally easy, and totally delicious.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              As an experiment, I tried pan-roasting a couple breasts as well (skin on but boneless), and they didn't turn out nearly as well as the thighs. Kind of tough. Does anyone have any suggestions for what to do with the leftovers? If I make them into a chicken noodle soup, will they tenderize a bit?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: aching
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                ChristinaMason RE: aching Dec 23, 2013 05:35 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                < If I make them into a chicken noodle soup, will they tenderize a bit?>

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                No, I don't think they will. I would break them into chunks or strips and mix with something saucey, like barbecue sauce. Serve on toasted rolls with cole slaw for extra moisture.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: ChristinaMason
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  gini RE: ChristinaMason Dec 23, 2013 06:41 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Or a chicken salad with mayo?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. Cherylptw RE: roxlet Dec 22, 2013 11:23 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Yesterday I spent most of the afternoon in the kitchen finishing up freezer meals for the DF. Dinner was braised rabbit in gravy, mashed potatoes and green beans. Simple.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I'm on my way to the airport to catch my flight....I'll post later..

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Cherylptw
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  ChristinaMason RE: Cherylptw Dec 23, 2013 05:36 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  That sounds great. Mmm.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. h
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Harters RE: roxlet Dec 23, 2013 04:07 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  We're sort of declaring the feasting season open. Well, it is the Eve of Christmas Eve.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  We'll be at the SiL's for Xmas day lunch, but we've bought a turkey breast joint for cold cuts, etc. I went to collect it this morning. I think it's big enough to cut in two and freeze one half for another time. Mrs H is out at the supermarket getting the fruit and veg for the festives along with any "goodies" she spots

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  And, for dinner, there's a couple of sea bass flllets to pan fry, with a dressing of tomato, capers and black olives (it won't be wet enough to warrant being called a sauce). There's some nice little new potatoes to par-boil and then saute. And, in breach of our usual rules about seasonality, theres some Peruvian asparagus to simply steam. Cheese for afters.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Harters
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    ChristinaMason RE: Harters Dec 23, 2013 05:36 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Harters, have you posted in the Special Diets about how your fasting is going? I must say I'm intrigued about how it works for a Hound.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: ChristinaMason
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Harters RE: ChristinaMason Dec 23, 2013 05:44 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      We've given up on it, Christina. I know a lot of folk find the 5:2 diet really helpful but we found we couldnt be as ruthless with ourselves as we were supposed to. Meant we didnt lose too much and it just got too hard trying. We'll wait for the next fad diet to come along.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Maybe I'm just fated to be a short, fat man, instead of just a short man.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Harters
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Berheenia RE: Harters Dec 23, 2013 06:45 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I get shorter and fatter every year. Cheers!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Harters
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          acssss RE: Harters Dec 23, 2013 01:52 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Oh no, don't stop trying Harters :-)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          "fad" is what is "bad"!
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Throw away the scales and just eat everything... slowly... until you are full and then stop - and you'll lose weight!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. gini RE: roxlet Dec 23, 2013 06:47 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I finally cooked a meal at home! This week has sure been a doozy.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      In addition to all of the holiday parties, it turns out there is a movie theater near our house that brings food and drink to your incredibly comfortable seats. Obviously we had to check that out. We also desperately needed to grab some punjabi on Saturday night before heading over to (yet another) holiday party. This theme: Leftovers. The idea was to bring all the leftovers from various holiday events and share with the group. For example, someone brought a leftover keg. We brought a Christmas tree.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Anyway, long story long, last night I braised some short ribs in red wine with leeks, carrots, and mushrooms. Served over garlic mashed potatoes with a simple green salad with olives and sun dried tomatoes alongside.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      It feels so good to cook again.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. rabaja RE: roxlet Dec 23, 2013 06:52 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Home again and ready to deck the halls, bake cookies and generally run around like a crazy person.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Wfd is what ever looks good at our hippy mart today when I go out to restock our fridge. That or Chinese tomorrow, as I like to participate in all holidays.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Sending out Merry Christmas wishes to you all, and a joyful New Year. May you all be well fed and happy for the rest of the season!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        8 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: rabaja
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          LindaWhit RE: rabaja Dec 23, 2013 02:13 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          That is suspiciously snowy, rabaja! Are you on the Northeast Coast?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: LindaWhit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            acssss RE: LindaWhit Dec 23, 2013 02:30 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Looks to me like a well-lit steeple, but then again, my eyesight ain't what it used to be

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: acssss
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              LindaWhit RE: acssss Dec 23, 2013 03:12 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Well-lit steeple it is. Just not sure where - it looks vaguely like a part of Faneuil Hall, but I don't think it is.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: LindaWhit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                acssss RE: LindaWhit Dec 23, 2013 03:19 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                It looks pointier than Faneuil Hall, but who knows? Isn't rabaja from CA? Ooooh, do we get a prize if we are right???

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: acssss
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  acssss RE: acssss Dec 23, 2013 03:33 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  although she was visiting her family in NH...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: LindaWhit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  steve h. RE: LindaWhit Dec 23, 2013 03:21 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Looks like North Church.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  In Portsmouth, New Hampshire.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: steve h.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    rabaja RE: steve h. Dec 23, 2013 03:32 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Ding, ding, ding!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    We just got back from New England yesterday, and we never miss a day in Portsmouth.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    It was beautiful with all of the snow. Hard to leave.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: rabaja
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      LindaWhit RE: rabaja Dec 23, 2013 06:37 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Ahhh, I couldn't remember where you were visiting. You were so nearby - glad you got to enjoy the pretty snow. Today, however, was rain ALL DAY - so most of that snow is gone, I'm afraid.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. foodieX2 RE: roxlet Dec 23, 2013 10:44 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            While I LOVE entertaining for the holidays the clean up is a b*tch, LOL. I am on my third dishwasher load. Thankfully the man handled all the hand washing so the china and crystal is washed, dried and put away

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Brunch was a blast yesterday and people made short work of the food. We maybe have 6 bagels left and enough ham for a couple of sandwiches. Thats it! I thought leftovers would be WFD but no such luck. I am racking my brain for something light I can mage tonight that does not entail going to the store but still feels festive and christmas-y. I am hoping to find something in the basement freezer I can pull out and dress up.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Tomorrow the real eating begins!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: foodieX2
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              roxlet RE: foodieX2 Dec 23, 2013 12:41 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Yes, it's the clean up that's the last straw for me. I have pretty crappy knees, and I can just about get through all the cooking, cleaning and prep, but by the time clean-up arrives, I'm pretty much done for. Since we're having a good-sized crowd this year, we've gotten someone to help us for a couple of hours for the dinner. We'll still do the glassware, but at least the dishes, pots and pans, and kitchen will be taken care of.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                weezieduzzit RE: roxlet Dec 23, 2013 01:10 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                That's a good Christmas present to yourself. You'll be able to enjoy your company instead of being exhausted.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: weezieduzzit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  foodieX2 RE: weezieduzzit Dec 23, 2013 02:19 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  agreed! a very nice way to be able to the joy the day

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. a
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              acssss RE: roxlet Dec 23, 2013 01:14 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Vermont has always been a favorite State of mine for antiquing, skiing, photography and road trips. A few years ago, we were up there and met this old woman (and I say old, because she was in her late 90's) handing out apple cider at one of the outside antique sites. It was just beginning to snow and very, very cold outside and at that very moment the warm apple cider felt as though it was the most delicious thing we ever tasted. She and I got to talking because, as I understood it, she makes her own maple syrup and she just fascinated me in general. Graciously, she gave me a recipe for what she says is her family's favorite dish: Chicken breasts in maple syrup, mustard and vinegar. Unfortunately, I never got around to making it but yesterday, I stumbled upon her recipe so, that is what's for dinner tonight.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Whoever wants the recipe - that is it. Just baked chicken breasts with a splash of vinegar, brushed generously with dijon mustard and maple syrup - MUST be good quality from Vermont - she told me to write that down :-)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I am making a simple lettuce salad and baked potatoes as sides... and wine will be served, as it is with every dinner.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Here's to you charming, old woman from Vermont.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              8 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: acssss
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                LindaWhit RE: acssss Dec 23, 2013 02:15 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Oh, please document that recipe here, acssss - sounds very good! (And VT maple syrup is the only way to go!)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: LindaWhit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  acssss RE: LindaWhit Dec 23, 2013 02:32 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  That's all I have/all she gave me.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: acssss
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    LindaWhit RE: acssss Dec 23, 2013 03:17 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Hmmm...Sounds so simple - let us know how it turns out!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: LindaWhit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      acssss RE: LindaWhit Dec 23, 2013 03:23 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Husband isn't home yet, so we didn't officially sit down to eat yet, but I tasted it and I don't like it.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I'll tell you what husband says because I am not a very good judge when it comes to sweet things. For me it is WAY too sweet.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: acssss
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        roxlet RE: acssss Dec 23, 2013 03:33 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Yup. That was my reaction when you described it. I don't care for sweet protein.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          acssss RE: roxlet Dec 23, 2013 03:37 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I'm not a big fan of sweet anything.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: LindaWhit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        acssss RE: LindaWhit Dec 23, 2013 04:59 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Husband liked it... but he is very complementary (like peanuts).
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I have to really get him drunk to tell me that my cooking was bad (assuming it really was), and he only had one glass of wine, so no go.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Who knows, maybe he really did like it.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        (the women in VT said it was a family fav, so I guess he wouldn't be the first)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: acssss
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          LindaWhit RE: acssss Dec 23, 2013 06:49 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I liked the idea of the sweet and tangyness of the vinegar and mustard. Maybe if all three were mixed together and brushed on the chicken it might work better. But I know there are some, as roxlet said, that don't like sweet with meat.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. LindaWhit RE: roxlet Dec 23, 2013 02:34 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  It was a very long day today, despite being off from work. Up at my usual Monday morning time frame hoping there wasn't any black ice or freezing rain (there wasn't) so I could head down to my dentist. There *was* plenty of rain, however, so driving all day was pretty crummy.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  From there, up to Mom's to pick her up and bring her to several medical appts. Then home to my stupidmarket to pick up Christmas dinner (beef tenderloin). I drove a very large triangle today.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  And her primary care physician wants her to see a specialist, and there was time tomorrow, so I'll be heading back up there tomorrow to take her back down for another appt. (into the midst of last-minute-Christmas shopping hell) for that appointment. And THEN I'll head back up to Mom's on Wednesday to cook Christmas dinner. And THEN I'll head back up to her house on Sunday to pick her up and drive her down to my sister's south of Boston to visit with my brother's family who is in from California...and then drive her home and then come home myself.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The Good Ol' Girl just rolled over 196,000 with today's travels. I suspect I'll go over 196,500 miles within the next week, and hit that Big 2-0-0 K sooner than I expected.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Anyway......I had some cheezencracks when I got home from the stupidmarket. Eventually, I'll reheat leftover chicken thigh dinner from Saturday night. I'm debating a small glass of wine.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  9 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: LindaWhit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    acssss RE: LindaWhit Dec 23, 2013 02:41 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Wow LW - I got tired just from reading about all the run-arounds - you must be friggin' pooped.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Enjoy a very **large** glass of wine and put your feet up!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I do, however, love hearing stories about your Mom. I lost mine many many years ago and it warms my heart to hear how close you are - you are very lucky :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: LindaWhit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      foodieX2 RE: LindaWhit Dec 23, 2013 02:50 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      UGH UGH and UGH for the traffic and the driving but a big yeah for the time with family.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Merry Merry LW.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: LindaWhit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Berheenia RE: LindaWhit Dec 23, 2013 02:58 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Go for the wine- feet up on the couch, kettehs in attendance. Your mom is one lucky woman!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Berheenia
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          steve h. RE: Berheenia Dec 23, 2013 03:05 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          +1 on that advice.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: LindaWhit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          LindaWhit RE: LindaWhit Dec 23, 2013 03:18 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          The debate lasted about 10 minutes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I poured myself a glass of wine. :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: LindaWhit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            suzigirl RE: LindaWhit Dec 23, 2013 03:33 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I say get your wine in while you can. It sounds like you will be on the road alot this week and this will fortify you. Have a great Christmas Linda.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: LindaWhit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              MamasCooking RE: LindaWhit Dec 23, 2013 06:21 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              You and Maria Carmen are the sweetest daughters:) I love it. Toast yourself for being attentive to your mom.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: MamasCooking
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                mariacarmen RE: MamasCooking Dec 23, 2013 10:06 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                aw, thanks, Mama!
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                i think LW and most of us here just do what we need and want to do - it's family!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                but hell yeah, LW - that's A LOT of driving! i'm glad you gave in to the call of vino....

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: mariacarmen
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  LindaWhit RE: mariacarmen Dec 24, 2013 05:38 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Yesterday was tough, mc, especially in the rain with the chance of a freezing rain (which luckily never materialized). Today was much easier with just a gray day that turned into late afternoon sunlight.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  But you're right - we do what need and want to do. I can't even begin to repay everything Mom has given me, so this is just a very small way to try and repay that debt.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. l
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Londonlinda RE: roxlet Dec 23, 2013 02:50 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              We're kind of traditional around Christmas in this household, so tonight is the last meal for three days that isn't fully planned (in a good way!). So it was pasta with lemon from a new Ottolenghi recipe
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Followed by a baked apple with yoghurt. Oh and himself welcomed me home from work (and from travelling in a really bad storm still lashing the house) with mulled wine. Love Christmas.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Londonlinda
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                helen_m RE: Londonlinda Dec 23, 2013 03:27 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                The pasta does sound festive, and how lovely to be greeted with surprise mulled wine!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. Berheenia RE: roxlet Dec 23, 2013 03:08 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Found the chili and cornbread in the freezer, tree is up and decorated, made Nick's Supernatural Brownies which are perfuming the kitchen. Grandson will dismantle tree but it's our first Christmas as grandparents so we don't care. This is a new chapter for us.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Last night we went to our favorite little French restaurant where the pastry chef/co-owner had made Buche de Noel. WOW. I never got it before but hers was TDF. She had a few special order whole Buches that were being picked up by ecstatic customers. What a heavenly dessert!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. linguafood RE: roxlet Dec 23, 2013 03:29 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Despite the craziness that last night's "quiet get-together" turned into (perhaps starting the evening off with several gin cocktails had *something* to do with it), we actually did a bit of xmas food shopping today.... not so much fun when yer nursing a massive hangover. But hey, we even made it to kickboxing just now :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I picked up a big fat side of salmon that has been cut in half, rubbed down with salt & brown sugar, showered with fresh dill, and shprinkled with diced lime (I know! How weird is that?? But according to Mr. Humble over here: http://www.gnolls.org/1887/the-best-g..., it makes *all* the difference. Let's hope he's right!), smooshed together tightly and wrapped in cling wrap.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  By Boxing Day at the latest it will have turned into the wonder that is gravad lax. We're invited to some soup / potluck event that day, and I plan on bringing at least ..... some of it. If I can stop myself from eating it all beforehand.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  We also picked up a big fat d'Artagnan duckling which will be our xmas dinner, along with braised red cabbage and my man's lovely pilav. I also got two huge fennel bulbs that I plan on turning into a salad with blue cheese, toasted walnuts and pomegranate. Not sure whether this salad will make an appearance tomorrow or xmas day, we'll see.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I also picked up a pound of jumbo lump crab meat to make a friend's fantastic recipe for "Crabmeat Maison" (courtesy of NOLA's Galatoire's) -- he made this for Thanksgiving and I've been thinking about it ever since. So that will be one of the nibbles for tomorrow night. We also got that fat bufflo mozza ball, and TJ's bacon-wrapped scallops, though they likely will be the least interesting part of the meal. Side will probably be Belgian endive with tangerine supremes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Another friend gave us black truffle salt & urfa peppers -- anyone have some nice ideas for either ingredient?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  As for tonight, I think we might be lazy and hop on over to our sushi/cocktail place. My guess is the cocktails won't have much appeal to us, but ya never know '-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  17 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    linguafood RE: linguafood Dec 23, 2013 03:31 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    El salmono.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      acssss RE: linguafood Dec 23, 2013 03:35 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      WOW Lingua (like your new avatar btw)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: acssss
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        linguafood RE: acssss Dec 23, 2013 03:42 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        That's the same avatar I've been using since I joined the site..... but thanks :-)

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          acssss RE: linguafood Dec 23, 2013 04:27 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I guess my eyesight is worse than I thought!!!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        roxlet RE: linguafood Dec 23, 2013 03:40 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        OK, so this is really weird -- when I first saw the photo on the left, my first impression was that it was part of one of those Easter Island heads!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          linguafood RE: roxlet Dec 23, 2013 03:51 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          That does look like a big hunk of a rocky nose, doesn't it?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          helen_m RE: linguafood Dec 23, 2013 04:04 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          It looks fabulous. We did a beetroot-vodka cured salmon last Christmas and it was fabulous. Roll on Boxing Day lingua!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            suzigirl RE: linguafood Dec 23, 2013 04:52 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Yum. I would be hard pressed to pick a favorite in that meal(s) lineup. Those are some wonderful sounding eats, lingua. Or should I say Mrs. American? ;-) Have a great Christmas.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: suzigirl
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              linguafood RE: suzigirl Dec 24, 2013 09:50 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              You too, suzigirl :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            MamasCooking RE: linguafood Dec 23, 2013 06:17 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            A pound of Dungeness lump crab meat here would cost me my first born:) But such a delicacy. A little * hair of the dog* as they say for your hangover:) Great sounding food.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: MamasCooking
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              linguafood RE: MamasCooking Dec 23, 2013 06:27 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              It wasn't exactly a steal at $27.99, but we won $70 at poker last night and figured what better way to spend it than invest in our holiday eatings '-D

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                acssss RE: linguafood Dec 23, 2013 06:32 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                $70? Cool. This last huge Mega Millions Lottery I won too - in fact, almost 700% of what I invested - a whole $8! Now that's what I call a good investment.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  MamasCooking RE: linguafood Dec 24, 2013 08:37 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Winning $70.00 is respectable:)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: MamasCooking
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    linguafood RE: MamasCooking Dec 25, 2013 09:54 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    It was a concerted effort. Plus we made sure our friends were too drunk to win :-D

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      suzigirl RE: linguafood Dec 25, 2013 05:51 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Too funny. Nicely played. You can be drunk, just not as drunk as them.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: suzigirl
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        linguafood RE: suzigirl Dec 25, 2013 06:09 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Or a better drunk player '-P

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                mariacarmen RE: linguafood Dec 23, 2013 10:09 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                holy hell that all sounds festive and fun and yum!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              3. helen_m RE: roxlet Dec 23, 2013 03:34 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                We got back from a last minute weekend in New York this morning and have been cleaning and tidying frantically so we can properly enjoy Christmas Eve tomorrow. I have gifts still to wrap and the menu to plan and shop for but there are only the three of us so the pressure's off.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                A great bonus of the holidays is being cooked for, my husband was flicking through Every Grain of Rice and suggested he cook braised chicken with chestnuts. It sounds quite festive! I'm making smacked cucumber to eat whilst it cooks and we'll eat it with pak choi and steamed rice.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. roxlet RE: roxlet Dec 23, 2013 03:38 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  We finally got the tree up and decorated last night after all the BBQ "customers" came and picked up. Tonight, we are going to a neighbor's to drink champagne celebrating both our sons getting into Yale. We plan on bringing some champagne and a small side of salmon that rjbh20 smoked yesterday. We'll likely come home after drinks and eat our small salmon side for dinner. What else there'll be will largely be determined by the amount we drink and what kind of nibbles are set out for us.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    steve h. RE: roxlet Dec 23, 2013 03:45 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Congratulations to the young men.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    You guys have a lot to be thankful for this year. Maybe buy two bottles of champagne, the good stuff, and reserve one for when you get home tonight.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: steve h.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      roxlet RE: steve h. Dec 23, 2013 03:48 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      We do have a lot to be thankful for, to be sure! I think we are reserving a bottle of the good stuff for tomorrow night's dinner which will be lobster stew and an endive salad in a mustard vinaigrette with Roquefort and walnuts. The celebration will be going on for some time!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      helen_m RE: roxlet Dec 23, 2013 04:06 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Wow! Well done to you both and your clever boys! You know how to celebrate in style with home-smoked salmon and champagne.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        suzigirl RE: roxlet Dec 23, 2013 05:01 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Two Yalies in one neighborhood? Wow. What's in the water? Seriously, have a great time and enjoy the company. The champagne and salmon sound amazing. Happy holidays.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. steve h. RE: roxlet Dec 23, 2013 04:04 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        New Jersey crab cakes by way of Whole Foods will be on the table tonight. The product is good, not as good as our homemade crab cakes, but pretty good, especially when you pan fry 'em in butter. Corn from the freezer will be kicked up a bit with some chopped jalapeño. Beer and wine at the ready.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        This is the calm period.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: steve h.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          suzigirl RE: steve h. Dec 23, 2013 05:07 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Mmm, crab cakes fried in butter. Even if they are store bought, they are crab cakes. Enjoy the calm before the storm. Have a merry Christmas.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. suzigirl RE: roxlet Dec 23, 2013 05:52 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Off to my sweet neighbors house for a party. He lost his wife to cancer in March at fifty eight. He lost his sweet golden retriever two months later. I am bringing ham salad and mini rolls. It's a very laid back crowd so i hope that is a crowd pleaser. A bottle of Crown Royal as a thank you for the invite. It will be a little sad for me as I will miss his wife, Rose. Miss you Rose and Zeke, the dog.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: suzigirl
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            LindaWhit RE: suzigirl Dec 23, 2013 07:03 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I think your gifts will be very well received, suzi.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. MamasCooking RE: roxlet Dec 23, 2013 06:02 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I bought a sweet corn tamale and a green chile tamale at the Hispanic market that I went to with my