Saturday, January 08, 2011

Holidays: That's a wrap!

Our holiday celebrations for Christmas and New Year's are finally complete! We had a wonderful Christmas Eve dinner at my sister's house this year. Here's what we served:

Appetizers - Laura laid out some beautiful deer sausage, Mississippi State cheese with a variety of crackers, salted roasted almonds, and hummus (YAY!) with pita chips and baby carrots. Yum. I ate WAY too much of the pre-dinner nibbles, along with several glasses of champagne.

Entree - Lobster thermidor. I was a little leery about cooking this, but it turned out buttery and rich and beautiful. The classic recipe calls for killing live lobsters (one for every two people), chopping up the meat, making a cream sauce, then nestling the meat and sauce back into the halved shells for their final bake in the oven. Since I didn't feel like killing lobsters on Christmas Eve, I ordered huge, beautiful lobster tails, then took the recipe from there. It actually ended up being easier than I thought, and I think I'll be cooking with lobster more often now. We served this rich concoction over pasta, along with dad's famous salad and some Sister Schubert rolls (or hubs would divorce me).

Dessert - Key lime pie. Grace made a beautiful looking Key Lime pie, and mother spent a good amount of time making mamool, but I was honestly so stuffed from dinner that I didn't eat a single bite of dessert this year! Oh, the horror!! I will have to do a better job of pacing myself next year!!

We also visited Brian's family on New Year's Day for our Christmas celebration with them. Another delicious menu!!

Entree - We had two HUGE, succulent hams! They were so good that we were slicing off pieces well in advance of lunch to "taste test." I swear to you, one of the dogs roaming through the house jumped up and snatched some of this ham right out of my hand. THAT'S how good it was.

Sides - Brian's green bean casserole and macaroni and cheese, as well as black eyed peas and cabbage. Soooo good!

Dessert - Brian's mom made her famous banana pudding for dessert. Divine!!

I always celebrate the holiday season all-out. We go see lights, we drink hot chocolate, we cook huge meals and bake cookies and decorate and really make the most of the holidays. Perhaps that's why I'm not sorry to see them go, when the time comes.

The weekend of New Year's (after the tornadoes blew over. Sheesh.), I cheerfully took down the Christmas decorations, boxed them up, and put them away. After the excess of the holidays, I delight in the austerity of January. My mantel is swept clean, my cupboards are no longer bursting at the seams, and I'm ready for a lull in the merriment.

I've cleaned out my closet, Clay's closet, and (shudder) the toy chest. I've ordered seed catalogs for spring, and I'm ready to sip a nice cup of tea by the fire, leaf through them, and savor the anticipation of spring.

Enjoy your winter!

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