Thursday, December 23, 2010

Christmas Meal Plan

This past week, I've been thinking a lot about what will be on the menu this Christmas weekend. I love the idea of establishing a tradition when it comes to food. Not only does it make a memory, it also just simplifies life a bit in what is usually a hectic time for me. I would love to have a set of recipes to pull out each year. I'm not there yet, but this weekend I'll be experimenting with some to see if they work for my family.
Here is my plan for the weekend:

Christmas Eve: Tortellini Soup & Homemade Bread
Last year we celebrated Christmas Eve with my brother-in-law's family. His in-laws were in town, and we were treated to a delicious tortellini soup that his mother-in-law Debbie made. She is a fantastic cook! Since we will hopefully be attending a Christmas Eve service, I wanted an easy dinner. From the recipe, it looks as if Toretellini Soup will fit the bill.

Christmas Morning: Sticky Buns, Eggs & Little Smokies
When I was growing up, Mom always made scrambled eggs and Little Smokies for Christmas morning breakfast. This is the one tradition that I automatically gravitated toward when we started having Christmas at home on our own. This year, my plan is to make a plate of sticky buns early in the morning and then cook up some eggs and Little Smokies. Most likely, we'll break out the "princess" cups from my Aunt Cass for our orange juice.

I actually have a recipe for Scrambled Eggs that I love to use. I know you're thinking, "Why do you need a recipe for scrambled eggs?" Well, quite frankly, they taste so much better when I follow an actual recipe than when I just throw it together!

Scrambled Eggs

4 eggs
1/4 teaspoon salt
pepper to taste
1/4 cup milk
1 Tablespoon butter

Whisk together the eggs, salt, pepper and milk in a bowl. (I usually just whip them up in my beloved Magic Bullet.) Heat butter in a non-stick skillet until the butter foams. Pour in the eggs. Use a wooden spoon to push the eggs from one side of the pan to the other until they are cooked to your liking. I abhor runny scrambled eggs so I cook them just until they are no longer wet.

Christmas Dinner: Since I don't want to be stuck in the kitchen making a huge meal on Christmas Day, I'm trying to keep it simple. I'm planning on roasting a chicken with garlic, rosemary and lemon like I learned how to do in The Last Minute Party Girl. I must not be as talented as the author because it takes me longer than 10 minutes to prep the bird, but once the bird is in the oven, there is very little to do. As for dessert, I'm still contemplating what to make. I could go the easy and traditional route and make Toffee Dream pie ahead of time. It is soooo good! But, since I might be making that for a celebration with my parents and siblings on the 26th, I thought it might be fun to make a Buche de Noel and use this chocolate filling (but substitute white chocolate for dark and omit the peppermint extract) and top it with homemade buttercream frosting (with added Special Dark Cocoa Powder). The girls would love it if I picked up some special Playmobil for the occasion too!

If you're looking for more Christmas Meal inspiration, check out Life as Mom for Ultimate Recipe Swap!

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