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2019 Holiday Cooking and Baking

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Very little cooking but that's the point of a traditional Aussie cold Christmas lunch:

 

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Jarlsberg, aged Gouda, Port Salut

2 kinds of kalamata olives, Sicilian green olives, green olives in gin & rosemary

garlic smoked mussels, tiger prawns, smoked salmon with capers

 tomatoes, cuke, salad mix, piquillo peppers, sun dried tomatoes, marinated artichoke hearts, roasted chili eggplant

cocktail sauce with wasabi to adjust the heat

loma, sous vide mountain pepper crusted flatiron steak, smoked ham

 

More than enough for 2

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It's almost never bad to feed someone.

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We had our big meal yesterday. Myself and GF, her parents, her daughter with fiance and their three collective kids (12 to 1 1/2), and GF's aunt with granddaughter and great-granddaughter (2) in tow. It was a rockin' good time, and hearing the little guy (1 1/2) booming out a hearty "HO! HO! HO!" on command in a surprisingly good baritone was the Cutest Thing Ever. That and him singing Jingle Bells to his great-grandma (he only had two of the words down pat, but they were the important ones).

 

Dinner was a small turkey and about 1/3 of a half-ham (I'd cut one into thirds a few months ago and vac-sealed them) along with mashed potatoes and dressing. As always at my house, it was veggie-palooza for sides: cabbage gratin, carrot and turnip mash (very traditional in this part of the world), sweet potato with maple and pecans, a baked buttercup squash, steamed broccoli, the inevitable green bean casserole, Brussels sprouts caramelized with onions and bacon, and parsnips cut into planks and browned gently in butter to bring out their sweetness. The sprouts and parsnips, and all the onions used throughout (except the french-fried kind in the casserole) were from my garden.

 

Desserts were a pumpkin cheesecake on gingersnap-crumb crust, and a big ol' apple pie made with the apples we'd gotten from the U-pick a few months ago (one of the 4-yo granddaughter's favorite weekends of the year). There were also lots of cookies and loaf cake slices just out and about.

Friends and family all got baskets of goodies this year: loaf cakes, decorated sugar and gingerbread cookies, regular shortbread cookies and smaller, more-delicate shortbreads made with brown butter and a small portion of oat flour in with the AP, the snowball cookies known to my GF as Russian Tea Cakes (they have many other names), plus Linzer cookies and German-style cinnamon stars.

I also made up a gingerbread village, with five little cottages, a church, and a few of those 3-D Christmas tree cookies (two flat trees, one with a notch at top and one with a notch at bottom, which are supposed to fit together...in my experience they don't, so I cut one three in half and just glue it in place with royal icing). There are some pictures of the gingerbread village, which I'll try to remember to post later. They're on my GF's new phone at present. It's not a super-detailed village or anything, because this was my first attempt at doing a gingerbread house, so it's more or less a "proof of concept" and an opportunity to evaluate the process.

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“What is called sound economics is very often what mirrors the needs of the respectably affluent.” - John Kenneth Galbraith

 

"Not knowing the scope of your own ignorance is part of the human condition...The first rule of the Dunning-Kruger club is you don’t know you’re a member of the Dunning-Kruger club.” - psychologist David Dunning

 

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10 hours ago, haresfur said:

Very little cooking but that's the point of a traditional Aussie cold Christmas lunch:

 That was very similar to our Christmas Eve dinner, no cooking, prosciutto, olives, gouda and smoked cheddar, cherry tomatoes, crackers........etc

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1 hour ago, chromedome said:

We had our big meal yesterday. Myself and GF, her parents, her daughter with fiance and their three collective kids (12 to 1 1/2), and GF's aunt with granddaughter and great-granddaughter (2) in tow. It was a rockin' good time, and hearing the little guy (1 1/2) booming out a hearty "HO! HO! HO!" on command in a surprisingly good baritone was the Cutest Thing Ever. That and him singing Jingle Bells to his great-grandma (he only had two of the words down pat, but they were the important ones).

 

Dinner was a small turkey and about 1/3 of a half-ham (I'd cut one into thirds a few months ago and vac-sealed them) along with mashed potatoes and dressing. As always at my house, it was veggie-palooza for sides: cabbage gratin, carrot and turnip mash (very traditional in this part of the world), sweet potato with maple and pecans, a baked buttercup squash, steamed broccoli, the inevitable green bean casserole, Brussels sprouts caramelized with onions and bacon, and parsnips cut into planks and browned gently in butter to bring out their sweetness. The sprouts and parsnips, and all the onions used throughout (except the french-fried kind in the casserole) were from my garden.

 

Desserts were a pumpkin cheesecake on gingersnap-crumb crust, and a big ol' apple pie made with the apples we'd gotten from the U-pick a few months ago (one of the 4-yo granddaughter's favorite weekends of the year). There were also lots of cookies and loaf cake slices just out and about.

Friends and family all got baskets of goodies this year: loaf cakes, decorated sugar and gingerbread cookies, regular shortbread cookies and smaller, more-delicate shortbreads made with brown butter and a small portion of oat flour in with the AP, the snowball cookies known to my GF as Russian Tea Cakes (they have many other names), plus Linzer cookies and German-style cinnamon stars.

I also made up a gingerbread village, with five little cottages, a church, and a few of those 3-D Christmas tree cookies (two flat trees, one with a notch at top and one with a notch at bottom, which are supposed to fit together...in my experience they don't, so I cut one three in half and just glue it in place with royal icing). There are some pictures of the gingerbread village, which I'll try to remember to post later. They're on my GF's new phone at present. It's not a super-detailed village or anything, because this was my first attempt at doing a gingerbread house, so it's more or less a "proof of concept" and an opportunity to evaluate the process.

 

Oh I forgot about turnip and carrot mash. Must do it again. Sounds like a great meal. 

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1 hour ago, demiglace said:

 

Oh I forgot about turnip and carrot mash. Must do it again. Sounds like a great meal. 

I'd picked up a food mill from a thrift store during apple season, for making my applesauce. With the coarse plate in, it worked very well for the carrot/turnip mash. It had a much more even consistency than when I've used a masher. Presumably I could then have put it through the finer plate had I wished, but I think a relatively coarse and textured effect is more appropriate.

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“What is called sound economics is very often what mirrors the needs of the respectably affluent.” - John Kenneth Galbraith

 

"Not knowing the scope of your own ignorance is part of the human condition...The first rule of the Dunning-Kruger club is you don’t know you’re a member of the Dunning-Kruger club.” - psychologist David Dunning

 

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It's about 65F here. Crazy weather. I  had to shoe a fly away on the back deck.

 

Got the Weber fired up with some hickory, ham is on it. Serving green beans, mac n cheese, veggie tray and deviled eggs.

 

Just three of us this year. My wife is a nurse and has to work tonight. My daughter is a nurse in Minneapolis and has to work tonight. The rest of the family is in KC. I'm not motivated to do too much more than the above.

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That's the thing about opposum inerds, they's just as tasty the next day.

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1 hour ago, chromedome said:

I'd picked up a food mill from a thrift store during apple season, for making my applesauce. With the coarse plate in, it worked very well for the carrot/turnip mash. It had a much more even consistency than when I've used a masher. Presumably I could then have put it through the finer plate had I wished, but I think a relatively coarse and textured effect is more appropriate.

 

That sounds like a good way to do it. We had it on Sundays and holidays and I can't believe I forgot all about it. Thanks for the memory. I'll get a turnip next time I'm out. 

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Okay. Its all over. Deep breath. Reset. Relax 😂. Happy Christmas Everyone. I hosted this year for my husbands family. 13 people and 1 Vegetarian (jk jk). 

 

Inlaw stress panic overprovide menu was: Turkey, Ham, Roast Beef, Pigs in Blankets, Prawns. Vegan sausage rolls. Pork sausage rolls. Vegan Pot Salad. Egg & Bacon Pot salad. Stuffed Potatoes, Stuffed jalapenos (with a V version). Lentil and Pumpkin salad. Coleslaw. Vegetarian Stuffing balls. Green salad. Fruit salad (made by mr 6). Trifle & 2 x Pavs ( MILs art not made by me). 

 

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Edited by CantCookStillTry (log)
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Lovely spread. I should think no one left your house hungry.

 

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Don't ask. Eat it.

www.kayatthekeyboard.wordpress.com

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Boxing Day good for us involved a roast sirloin of beef and a pain surprise. This latter is a new one for me but something I think I’ll make many more times in the future. 
 

Essentially it’s a loaf of bread which is cut like a hassleback potato then stuffed with the following:

 

sautéed mushrooms

caramelised onions (done ridiculously slowly a la thomas Keller)

slices of baked potato flesh

gruyere cheese

a savoury custard made with creme fraiche and a couple of eggs with some thyme leaves

 

The whole thing is wrapped in paper and baked for 30 minutes before unwrapping and giving it another 10 minutes to gratinate. 
 

It’s delicious, not exactly light, but delicious!

 

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5 hours ago, &roid said:

Boxing Day good for us involved a roast sirloin of beef and a pain surprise. This latter is a new one for me but something I think I’ll make many more times in the future. 
 

Essentially it’s a loaf of bread which is cut like a hassleback potato then stuffed with the following:

 

sautéed mushrooms

caramelised onions (done ridiculously slowly a la thomas Keller)

slices of baked potato flesh

gruyere cheese

a savoury custard made with creme fraiche and a couple of eggs with some thyme leaves

 

The whole thing is wrapped in paper and baked for 30 minutes before unwrapping and giving it another 10 minutes to gratinate. 
 

It’s delicious, not exactly light, but delicious!

 

6424A682-BAC1-4526-BEBE-E6C3EE7B269F.thumb.jpeg.c05dec5e406890b082a9b1085ac861c1.jpeg

B4F5A8DD-75E1-423E-AE09-F9214372CC27.thumb.jpeg.427a08ebcfb6e6512a979d7410f13503.jpeg

FC7B6A3E-E046-468E-8125-4048B7487BDB.thumb.jpeg.10bd6186aabbd3eeb20fc094941b74ac.jpeg

Definitely need to make this bread thing.  That looks delicious!

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I did some king crab legs on Christmas Eve.  Used the CSO.  So easy.

 

Red Lobster biscuits and homemade mushroom/ricotta stuffed ravioli and a salad to go with.  Somehow missed a picture of a few things.

 

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A sausage, mushroom broccoli strata thing for breakfast Christmas morning

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Ronnie got me a couple of really cute wine glasses so I had to try it out with some champagne :)

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I've had a 4.3 lb prime rib in the fridge drying out for a few days

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Kind of had a crisis due to me not planning very well.  I did our last prime rib in the CSO--I do the Serious Eats method:  200F on the convection setting until the internal temp hits 125F.  Remove from oven, let rest for at least 30 mins then roast at 500F for 10 mins.  A 3.7 lb prime rib took about 1 hour and 15 mins to reach that temp last time.  Anyway, I went to  put the PR in and it was too big for the CSO.  Major panic.  Had to use the big oven.  Took a lot longer.  LOL thank goodness it was just the two of us.  Anyway. we had some cheeses on a platter that I bought for myself--Harbison that I love on the left, some awful cheese on the right.  Had no flavor.

 

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Simple side of bruss. sprouts and a tater

 

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Well although the Dungeness Crab Season was delayed off Oregon and got off late in Washington, seems to be good right now.  We can get fresh Dungeness for $7.99 a pound for whole crabs.  If you're lazy, you can get "crab clusters" for $15.99 a pound.  They really get you on that one because all it is are crab legs and body "clusters" broken off a whole crab.  I crack it myself.  This is really not a salad but fresh crab with homemade mayonnaise and diced tomato and diced cucumber.  I should have diced the cucumber smaller, but that's a minor fault.  I use a mild oil for the mayonnaise so it doesn't overpower the crab.  

Dungeness Crab Salad with Lemon-Thyme Mayonnaise.JPG

 

Ingredients

For the Crab Salad Mosaic-

1 1/2 cups Dungeness crab meat

1 cup seeded, diced tomato

1 cup seeded, diced cucumber

1 tbsp. grapeseed oil

 

For the Lemon-Thyme Mayonnaise-makes 1 cup mayonnaise

1 large egg

2 tsp. fresh lemon juice

3/4 cup grapeseed oil

1/2 tsp. chopped lemon zest

1 tsp. chopped fresh thyme

salt and white pepper to taste

fresh thyme sprigs for garnish

 

Make the Lemon-Thyme Mayonnaise-

Place the eggs, lemon juice, salt and pepper to taste in a blender. Process just until ingredients are combined, about 20 seconds. With blender running at low speed, slowly drizzle in the oil in a slow steady stream. Continue to add enough oil until the mayonnaise thickens. This will take about 2-4 minutes. 

Refrigerate the mayonnaise at least one hour before using to allow it to cool and the oil to set.

 

Make the Dungeness Crab Salad Mosaic and Serve-

Place the diced cucumber and tomato in a bowl and spoon in the 1 tbsp. of oil, and toss to coat. Spoon some of the diced cucumber and tomato in the bottom of a ring mold and gently press down. Place the crab in a bowl and add a spoon of the mayonnaise and toss gently to coat. Spoon a layer of the dressed crab on top of the cucumber and tomato layer.

 

Gently remove the mold. Add a crab leg on top of the salad and spoon over a dollop of the mayonnaise. Spoon some mayonnaise on the side of the plate, then garnish with fresh thyme and serve with chips.

 

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Old school Polish grandma food.  Sweetened farmer's cheese stuffed and ground up pot roast stuffed pierogis.    I am officially tired of making pierogis.IMG_8887.thumb.jpg.32a1e9a4ed76ebece1530298414270b4.jpg

IMG_8896.jpg

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Well this Christmas was certainly different than any other.  We travelled to Vancouver where I had major surgery on the 24th...all good now.  So my Christmas dinner a tray of ‘full fluids’ from the hospital kitchen.  My DH was staying in a very close by hotel.  Pretty well all local eateries were closed on the 25 th...even Tim Hortons...and DH did not plan ahead like purchasing a sandwich on the 24th. ...it could have been put in the room fridge.  Shoppers Drugmart across the street was open and the had a couple of ‘food’ isles....guess what he chose?.............a can of sardines in spring water and a cup of soup which had noodles.😲

All good, he had Bourbon in the room.🥰

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14 minutes ago, Okanagancook said:

Well this Christmas was certainly different than any other.  We travelled to Vancouver where I had major surgery on the 24th...all good now.

 

Wow, was that planned or something that just came up? Glad to hear you are OK now. Maybe you can plan a nice meal for New Year's? Hope all is going well for you! 

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Thank you both...planned for the 20th...cancelled after waitin 4.5 hours...done on 24.

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1 hour ago, Okanagancook said:

Well this Christmas was certainly different than any other.  We travelled to Vancouver where I had major surgery on the 24th...all good now.  So my Christmas dinner a tray of ‘full fluids’ from the hospital kitchen.  My DH was staying in a very close by hotel.  Pretty well all local eateries were closed on the 25 th...even Tim Hortons...and DH did not plan ahead like purchasing a sandwich on the 24th. ...it could have been put in the room fridge.  Shoppers Drugmart across the street was open and the had a couple of ‘food’ isles....guess what he chose?.............a can of sardines in spring water and a cup of soup which had noodles.😲

All good, he had Bourbon in the room.🥰

Glad to hear that you are alright. Hard to believe Timmy's ever closes. 

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@Okanagancook, glad that's past and hope you're continuing to do well.

 

I am now faced with post-holiday cooking that involves using a veritable mountain of leftovers.

 

I have leftover pot roast; leftover smoked pulled pork butt; enough leftover ham to float a battleship, if it were liquid; a bunch of leftover brussels sprouts (roasted); slaw, potato salad, baked beans, macaroni and cheese. Will feed the small people, whom I have until 1/1 or 1/2, leftovers, but not sure how big a dent I'll put in them. I guess the pork and the ham can be vac-sealed and frozen. 

 

Any thoughts on what to do with the leftover sprouts? They were just roasted with olive oil, salt and pepper. I'm thinking the beef will go into a beef pot pie, and instead of using regular crust, I'll use the gluten-free Cheddar Bay biscuit mix. Also contemplating a big batch of Brunswick stew with some of the barbecue.

 

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Don't ask. Eat it.

www.kayatthekeyboard.wordpress.com

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Every year I bring out this little book from 1951 that was my Grandfather's.  We always kept it out until New Year's Day.  It's funny that some of these cocktails seemed lost for decades, but in recent years the cocktail seems to have experienced a resurgence.

Holiday Drink Book #1.jpeg

 

Holiday Drink Book #2.jpeg

 

Holiday Drink Book #3.jpeg

 

Holiday Drink Book #4.jpeg

 

Holiday Drink Book #5.jpeg

 

Holiday Drink Book #6.jpeg

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23 minutes ago, Shelby said:

I'd put them in both the pot pie and the soup.

 

I like them with pasta and some goat or feta cheese; lots of black pepper.  referring to @kayb leftover b-sprouts


Edited by heidih (log)

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I saw those loaded potato chips too....definitely beer food.

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