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Christmas Holiday Spirit? 2016 / Cooking / Plans? / Thoughts??

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UNCLE JIMMY

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Just sitting here, and looking at the One tree Daughter Maria set up in the dining room.
I actually thought of Downsizing the Christmas Celebration, but now, I have second thoughts. I'm probably being selfish, but I just don't have the push / steam / strength, to overdo the 2016 Christmas.

I don't know yet! ... Forget the kids having Me and Tina for dinner. They each don't have the room. Every year, it's been dinner here at our house.
I don't want to be a scrooge, but we have to cut down on the foods.

I'm not done posting on this thread. I'm sure there will be plans and things to talk about as the days get closer to the holiday, and I'm sure things will change.

So, what plans do you all have?

bethk

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We will be celebrating the holiday at Lyn & Bill's again this year with a dinner of prime rib of beef and multiple sides....expecting 10 this year. Lyn and I love making the meal together and laugh too much....well, not too much, but more than most sane people expect. She's already planning on the 'Tree' folded napkins we did last year, even finding new matching green cloth napkins to fold (gotta Google the 'napkin tree fold' again to find the video of how to fold them!)

In attendance will be the usuals plus a few....friends from Toledo who's daughters are now unavailable to celebrate with (in the Service and stationed in Germany), a neighbor who just lost his wife and another neighbor who's wife travels back to Toledo to spend the holiday with her 95+ year old mother (he's Jewish and loves to come join us for the Prime Rib and Mashed Potatoes.....and the desserts he's not suppose to eat if his wife is around ~ LOL).

NormM

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For several years, I'd started using a small tree on a table but last year the kids took over and got a full sized artificial tree and a lot more ornaments. I let them do all the decorating, including outside, which I never did. Now this year it's just Charlie and me and so I helped decorate the tree. I doubt there will be any big dinner but we usually go to my nephew's house for Christmas day.

http://r2j1cp@gmail.com

cookingirl

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Yesterday, I took out the Christmas stuff.. Boy, do I have a ton of things!  I have so many Hallmark musical things.. I do not have the room to display all of them..  I kept buying and buying. Now Hallmark does not really carry the good stuff.. I have to be careful because of Artie and his sometimes brattiness..

I am really amazed he does not play around with my nativity set. I have it set up on a small round table in the corner of the room. He likes to hide under the table, yet he does not touch the set at all.

No Christmas tree, although I do miss the lights.. I have several sets of lights which I just draped around the crown molding last year. I may do that again this year.

For Christmas Eve, I am going to my cousin's house. He has a real 'family' Christmas Eve. It is his side and his wife's side of the family, along with several friends. We all know each other, so it is nice. There will be at least 25 people along with kids.. younger ones and the older ones.. It is a buffet with tons of food. Eggplant parm, chicken parm, chicken, ziti, broccoli, salad, ? calzones, pasta with sauce, meatball, all the appetizers you could think of and then the desserts are cookies, brownies, --the food goes on and on...

Christmas Day, my other cousin's wife invited me over..it is easy to get to.. just the next city over. Not sure what she will be having. One year it was prime rib, another year it was pork roast.. this is a traditional sit down dinner.. their tradition is pop-overs... I can take them or leave them.. There will be her adult kids, grandkids, me, and I think one of her son's new neighbors who is Jewish, her dad and her baby... so about 8, 9 adults and 4 kids... one is their grandson who is a teenager and is autistic. again-tons of food...

I am debating what to bring for hostess gifts, food.. I know at Steve's on Christmas Eve, the order was already put in for the Italian cookies from the bakery--that is a tradition..

any ideas on something easy to make?

Bugster2

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Christmas is not a good time of the year for me. PTSD. Sometimes we get invited to my SIL's but they now go out of town so it will prolly be just Joe, Katie, me. Since Katie refuses to eat beef, Joe and I will have rib eye steaks instead of the whole roast. I would invite my sister and her family but we just can't afford prime rib for them all.

Jimmy, why don't you assign dishes that your family can bring. Have them put it in a slow cooker. It can be plugged in when they arrive. There is no reason why you should have to do all the work. My sister got smart. Her in-laws ( about 10) would come over and not lift a finger. So, one year she said that they could use her kitchen because her RA was acting up and they could cook the dinner. That put a stop to that real fast. Her family now goes out to a good restaurant.

bethk

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cookingirl wrote:

I am debating what to bring for hostess gifts, food.. I know at Steve's on Christmas Eve, the order was already put in for the Italian cookies from the bakery--that is a tradition..

any ideas on something easy to make?

Bottles of wine are easy, especially if you know what your hosts enjoy. I saw an idea to take 2 inexpensive yet good bottles of wine. Hang a tag of "Drink me Now" on one and "Save for Later" on the other. Then they know it's meant just for them.

If you want to make something to take, the Peach Sangria I took to Thanksgiving was good.

6 c. Moscato Wine (Inexpensive is fine because of what you're mixing it with)
4 c. Peach Schnapps (or whatever is in the bottle)
1 Lg. Can Sliced Peaches (easier to serve if you chop roughly)
1 Lemon, Sliced thin
1 Lime, Sliced thin
1 Orange (I used little seedless Mandarine oranges), Sliced thin

Mix wine and schnapps in a container, add the can of sliced peaches (juice and all) and all the sliced fruit. Allow to sit in the refrigerator 1 or 2 days.

Day of event, pour into a pretty punch bowl and add 1 - 2 liter bottle of Ginger Ale (I used Canada Dry) and 1 - 2 liter bottle of Soda Water. Serve over ice and be sure to spoon some of the fruit into each glass.

UNCLE JIMMY

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Wow!.... Sounds like everyone has a plan.
We know there will be a Ham, and a turkey breast...

Like bugster said, it would be great for others to bring something; which they do, but they prep and cook it here last minute under my feet while I'm finishing up the meal. That means 6 people in the kitchen, and all bumping into each other. No wonder why I have stomach issues! LOL
I would love to have everything cooked, then sliced and in foil pans to just throw in the oven to heat up a bit.

Oh Boy!... and then I forgot. There is Christmas Eve here too! That is usually fish dishes.

Bugster2

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Jimmy, tell them they can't come unless they pre-cook their item and shove it into a pan or slow cooker. Someone can bring a green salad. They don't have to cook that at all. Same with a Jello or potato salad. Or, tell them to buy one of those turkey roasters and plop their pan into it, plug it in someplace away from the kitchen keeping your space free. Most people wouldn't even suggest that but I have all the brass in the world and my kitchen is verboten to anyone but me. Get the F-out as my husband would say. LOL.

UNCLE JIMMY

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Bugster2 wrote:Jimmy, tell them they can't come unless they pre-cook their item and shove it into a pan or slow cooker. Someone can bring a green salad. They don't have to cook that at all. Same with a Jello or potato salad. Or, tell them to buy one of those turkey roasters and plop their pan into it, plug it in someplace away from the kitchen keeping your space free. Most people wouldn't even suggest that but I have all the brass in the world and my kitchen is verboten to anyone but me. Get the F-out as my husband would say. LOL.

DIL is pretty good. She has those pizza bags to keep food hot!
Sometimes, she will make a salad fresh.
It's DD that starts with the chop chop and sheet pans, and trimming veggies like a bull in a China closet...

No matter what I plan, it's not right, or not approved by the others.
I Give UP!

bethk

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Admin
Jimmy ~ just for grins & giggles have Tina pick up a Stouffer's Lasagna and have that in the oven. If they don't get the 'usual' stuff they might just get the hint.

As for Maria.....make a "STOP" sign and when she starts messin' at the counter, slap her in the back of the head with the thing.....(just KIDDING!)

UNCLE JIMMY

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bethk wrote:Jimmy ~ just for grins & giggles have Tina pick up a Stouffer's Lasagna and have that in the oven.  If they don't get the 'usual' stuff they might just get the hint.

As for Maria.....make a "STOP" sign and when she starts messin' at the counter, slap her in the back of the head with the thing.....(just KIDDING!)

Yeah! That's a good idea... lol! I'll say, they all better run when I'm running the show!

Imelda HL

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We are going to host a Novena Rosary night at our home on Saturday.. I'm planning to serve some Chow Mien and eggrolls and some cookies after the prayer, I baked some Mexican wedding cookies which is a crowd pleaser and some Red Velvet Pinwheel cookies.. I did not add red color, I used cocoa powder, some coffee instant and some molasses, I love doing it.. it was fun rolling and rolling.... and they are so pretty

here is the recipe:

http://goboldwithbutter.com/red-velvet-pinwheel-cookies/








bethk

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Admin
Oh, my, Imelda....you did a wonderful job on the pinwheel cookies! It's not easy to get your dough rolled out and into 'perfect' pinwheel shape.

I saw a recipe that used cooked red beets as the red coloring in a pinwheel cookie....sounded interesting to me.

I won't be making a lot of cookies this year...if I have them around I'll be the one eating them and that isn't going to help me lose any weight. So, I'll just have to live vicariously through my friends.

Crybaby

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They do look very pretty, Imelda. But I'm anxious to see your eggrolls!!!

bethk

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Admin
I went to Sam's Club today to just wander around....I love just walking through the aisles, especially at Christmas time, and have time to see all the specialty items they carry. In the baking aisle they had TWO boxes of the dark chocolate dessert cups left for sale ($5.41 for 24) ~ I grabbed them as soon as I saw them! They are great to use for a 'special' dessert, filled with a mousse or fruit. I'm thinking I'll make some easy-peasey raspberry mousse (raspberry yogurt, cream cheese & Cool Whip), add a tiny bit of seedless raspberry jam in the bottom of the chocolate cups, pipe in the mousse and top with a fresh raspberry & another drizzle of the jam on top. People think you really went all out on a dessert and don't have a clue how easy it is.

I've done the same with strawberry before, too. The taste of the dark chocolate with the sweet mousse & tart fruit is a winning combination.

Crybaby

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bethk wrote:I went to Sam's Club today to just wander around....I love just walking through the aisles, especially at Christmas time, and have time to see all the specialty items they carry.  In the baking aisle they had TWO boxes of the dark chocolate dessert cups left for sale ($5.41 for 24) ~ I grabbed them as soon as I saw them!  They are great to use for a 'special' dessert, filled with a mousse or fruit.  I'm thinking I'll make some easy-peasey raspberry mousse (raspberry yogurt, cream cheese & Cool Whip), add a tiny bit of seedless raspberry jam in the bottom of the chocolate cups, pipe in the mousse and top with a fresh raspberry & another drizzle of the jam on top.  People think you really went all out on a dessert and don't have a clue how easy it is.

I've done the same with strawberry before, too.  The taste of the dark chocolate with the sweet mousse & tart fruit is a winning combination.

No flavor goes better with chocolate than raspberry!

bethk

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Admin
We'll be going to Dane's sister's for part of the afternoon on Christmas Eve. She told me not to bring anything....just snacks and then, after we will leave to drive home, she will be hosting her boys and their families for her family Christmas dinner. I was relieved (I'm SO awful....) we didn't have to stay for their family Christmas celebration. I was really hoping to just stay home and not do anything before our Christmas dinner at Lyn & Bill's.

Just before we ended our conversation I asked again about bringing 'something'....and she remembered she didn't have any Christmas cookies (poor thing doesn't have a stand mixer so if she were forced to make cookies she'd have to do them with a wooden spoon). So, last night I left a pound of butter and a package of cream cheese in the sink so it would be room temperature when I got up. Had the cookie dough made and cleaned up before 7 a.m. !

Now I have my potatoes on to boil for the 'twice baked' potato casserole for Sunday. I love to get it done and out of the way so all I have to do on the 'day' is spread a bit of butter on the top or sprinkle with some buttered panko and heat it in the oven.

We're going to do the Prime Rib of Beef using the 500° 'kick-start' method of roasting at 5 minutes per pound of beef and then turning off the oven and letting it sit for 2 hours. Everyone I've talked to who has used that method swears their beef comes out a perfect medium rare every time. I sure hope so! I'd hate to be the one to over-cook a 10# Standing Rib Roast.....

NormM

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I bought a small rib roast yesterday. I have not decided whether I will make it on the 24th or 25th. I really have not planned out the rest of the meal yet.

http://r2j1cp@gmail.com

Bugster2

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Since Katie won't eat beef, I bought a two rib standing rib roast that I cut in half. We are going to throw it on the grill and save the second half for another day. I am going to serve it with a Stilton/madeira sauce, golden onions which is a casserole made with sautéed onions in a wine cream sauce covered with gruyere and slices of buttered baguette on top. Bacon, shallot, brown sugar and garlic green beans as another side. I haven't thought about a dessert. I splurged and bought 2 bottles of Bailey's salted caramel for sipping. I may have to hide the second bottle. It has a way of disappearing before I know it.

UNCLE JIMMY

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At least so far, the Kielbasa is here. Tina picked it up yesterday in PA.
The car smells so good. I will have to open all the windows, and let it air out. It smells like a smoke house. Ummmm!

bethk

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Admin
I thought prepping two smaller mashed potato casserole dishes might be easier than one large one that has to be passed. Lyn has a huge round table and I'm thinking we can sit one dish on each side and everyone can be served without having to pick up the hot casserole dishes.

UNCLE JIMMY

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bethk wrote:I thought prepping two smaller mashed potato casserole dishes might be easier than one large one that has to be passed.  Lyn has a huge round table and I'm thinking we can sit one dish on each side and everyone can be served without having to pick up the hot casserole dishes.


That's a good thing to do Beth!
We always put the butter in two dishes, and the salt and pepper on each end of the table.
As far as the main food items, we just leave everything on the Island,
( not a huge island but what we could fit size wise!) and everyone fills their plates and carries it right into the dining room.
All be it, there is always a reach and interruption issue.
I just sit there, and look at something I want, but wait till Tina or someone else asks me if I want anything! Then they say, just ask!

I say, No No, I don't want to interrupt anyone, so I'm waiting for a spot to break in to ask, when someone stops chewing, or after a swallow!

bethk

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Pizza Cutter Sugar Cookies





Made some round ones because 'one of us' said HE liked round ones ~ bet he doesn't eat any!



And some coconut macaroons for Lyn.....

UNCLE JIMMY

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Oooooooo!!... Yummmmm!!

Imelda HL

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bethk wrote:

We're going to do the Prime Rib of Beef using the 500° 'kick-start' method of roasting at 5 minutes per pound of beef and then turning off the oven and letting it sit for 2 hours.  Everyone I've talked to who has used that method swears their beef comes out a perfect medium rare every time.  I sure hope so!  I'd hate to be the one to over-cook a 10# Standing Rib Roast.....

I bought about 8 lbs of standing ribs, I plan to roast it, I'm searching the net for the seasoning, then I thought I'm going to rub it with Onion soup mix.. I saw a recipe by Paula Deen, she turned off the oven for hours then reheated the ribs before serving like what you intend to do.. I think I'm going to to it too.. but I have my problem, our dinner will be at my in-law's place at 3 pm, we live 1 hour apart, we plan to leave our home at noon, any idea what I should do? I'm thinking to roast it at home in the morning, then turn off the oven, rest it for 2 hours, wrap it tight with foil, then heading to my in-laws, put it back to the preheated oven ( I wonder how long I should preheat it, any suggestion? ), I know they like medium rare for their roast ( I prefer medium well, so I'll nuke my 30 seconds in microwave ).

This is my first time roasting a standing ribs, I saw it on Cook Country last week, but can't remember how they did it and I can't find the recipe on the net.. I remember ( id I'm not mistaken) they seasoned it and let it sit for hours in the fridge

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