Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Christmas dinner

I think that our dinner party last Sunday will go down as one of our favorite holiday memories.  Even the planning and preparation was fun.  Steve and I spent most of Sunday in the kitchen together and just cooked the afternoon away to a soundtrack of Christmas carols. 

Incidentally, our kind next door neighbor stopped by during this time to drop off a gift for us, which turned out to be a cookbook and a set of appetizer plates.  I'm sure he felt pretty good about his gift choice, as we were both wearing aprons when we answered the door. 

Steve took lots of pictures while we were preparing, but we ended up with precious few of the finished products.  Possibly a sign that it was too tasty to waste time photographing? 

For an appetizer, we served Honey-Rosemary Cherries and Blue Cheese Crostini.  The sweetness of the cherries was a lovely compliment to the tangy blue cheese. 

For the soup course, we served an old favorite- Roasted Butternut Squash soup.  This soup is quite easy to make and I just kept it warm in the crock pot until we were ready to eat.  I usually leave out the nuts, but this time opted for pecans which gave the flavor a little more depth. 

The main course was beef tenderloin, Buttermilk Mashed Potato Bakes, and Green Beans with Mushrooms and Bacon.  The tenderloin only needed a little salt, pepper, and soy sauce for seasoning.  I baked the mashed potatoes in ramekins so they would be easy to serve and stay hot longer.  The recipe I used had lots of great ideas for add-ins.  I used caramelized onions, Gruyere cheese, and parsley. 

We made the Chocolate Peppermint Cake a day ahead, which turned out to be a great idea.  It was much easier to shape and ice the cake once it had been cooling in the refridgerator overnight. 

The cake doesn't look very fancy, but it sure does taste fancy.  The peppermint filling goes well with the bittersweet chocolate. The icing is a chocolate ganache, which is made from melted chocolate and cream and then beat as if you were making whipped cream.  It was light and airy and not overly sweet and we all loved it. 

It's so rare that it happens, but I love a meal that takes hours to finish.  I like to eat slowly, to appreciate each dish as it comes, and have plenty of time to talk in between.  We had such a lovely group of friends to share this meal with and nobody had to rush anywhere.  How often does that happen during the holiday season? 

I can hardly believe how quickly the month is passing.  We made a list last night of the final things we want to do before Christmas and I don't know if we'll fit them all in.  Today I'm baking cookies and making some more scarves to restock the shop- last January was a busy scarf month and I want to be ready! 

No comments:

Post a Comment


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Pin It button on image hover