Friday, December 23, 2011

Christmas Menu

Christmas Menu 

Christmas Eve Buffet
(Potato and Leek Soup)
2 tablespoons butter
2 leeks, white and light green parts only, sliced into rings
1 medium yellow onion, sliced
2-3 teaspoons minced garlic
4 potatoes, peeled and cut into cubes
2 t parsley or 1 t thyme (if you have it)
or 2 t herbes de provences
2 t nutmeg
4 cups chicken broth
1 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream or half and half
salt and pepper, to taste
In a large stock pot melt butter over low heat. Add leeks and onion, cover, and cook for 10 minutes. Add garlic and stir for 1 minute (don’t let it burn or it will make your soup bitter!)
Add potatoes and season with salt and pepper. Add herbs and nutmeg and stir well. Cover pot and continue to cook for 5-6 minutes.
Add chicken stock and bring to a boil, reduce heat and cook, partially covered for 30 minutes.
Take off heat and puree soup in blender or food processor or with immersion blender (this one is by the easiest. You can borrow my immersion blender if you want!). Slowly add cream and stir. If you like your soup thinner or thicker you can adjust the amount of cream you add. If you add more cream, you’ll need to add more salt to taste.

Brie en Croute

1/2 package puffed pastry sheets
1 egg
1 tablespoon water
2 T Dijon mustard
½ c pesto
1/4 cup toasted sliced almonds or walnuts
1 (13.2 ounce) round Brie cheese
Thaw pastry sheet at room temperature 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Mix egg and water.
Unfold pastry sheet on lightly floured surface. Roll
into 14 inch square. Cut off corners to make a circle. Spread mustard to within 1 inch of pastry edge. Spread pesto over cheese and top with nuts. Top with cheese. Brush edge of circle with egg mixture. Fold two opposite sides over cheese. Trim remaining two sides to 2 inch from edge of cheese. Fold these two sides onto the round. Press edges to seal. Place seam-side down on baking sheet. Decorate top with pastry scraps if desired in the shape of holly and leaves or a bow. Brush with egg mixture.
Bake 20 minutes or until golden. Let stand 1 hour. Serve with crackers.

Artichoke Dip
1 (6.5 ounce) jar marinated artichoke hearts, drained
and quartered
1 cup mayonnaisse
1 1/2 cups grated Parmesan cheese
1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1 (4 ounce) can chopped green chile peppers
.Bake for 25 minutes or until bubbly and slightly browned. Serve warm.
Other items on the buffet:
Crackers (“grown-up” crackers and fishy crackers), Pepperoni and salami etc, baguettes, brie, shrimp, American meats and cheese, Martinelli’s and chocolates.

Christmas Breakfast

Christmas Morning Sausage Casserole
This is what we gorge ourselves on late Christmas morning when we're in a sugar fog from the goodies in our stockings and need something substantial! I make it the night before, and then just stagger over to the oven in the morning and pop it in!

1 pd sage flavored breakfast sausage
1/2 cup onion (or 2 T dried, minced onion)
3 cups frozen shredded potatoes
1/4 cup butter, melted
12 oz shredded cheddar
1 16 oz container cottage cheese
6 eggs
Brown sausage and onion and set aside to cool. Thaw potatoes (I just do it in the microwave) and mix in melted butter. Put potatoes in the bottom of a 9x13 pan and spread evenly. In a mixing bowl, add eggs and mix thoroughly. Then add sausage and onions, cheese, and cottage cheese and stir well. Pour egg mixture on top of potatoes (Bake for one hour at 375 (You may need to put foil on top the last few minutes so the edges don't burn. (This can be assembled the night before, which is what we usually do late Christmas Eve. I brown the sausage while I'm wrapping presents and then just throw it all together in a whirl of eggs, cheese, and grace!)
Christmas Day Sugar Cookies
1 ½ c sugar
1 c butter
3 oz softened cream cheese
½ t salt
2 t vanilla
½ t almond extract
3 eggs
4 c flour
2 t cream of tartar
2 t baking powder ¼ c sour cream
7-10 minutes at 350
  Babonne's Belgian Waffles

2 and 1/4 ounces of yeast (9 1/4 ounce packages OR 6 T, plus 2 ¼ t) (It sounds like a lot, but that's really how much you use!)
41/2 cups warm water
1 t. sugar
6 eggs, separated into whites and yolks
1 pound melted butter
3 cups sugar
2 pounds flour (about 9 cups)
Raw sugar (You can find this in the baking section--sometimes it's called kosher sugar and it looks like giant sugar crystals)
Dissolve yeast in warm water and mix in 1 teaspoon sugar. Let mixture rise in 200 degree oven for 15 minutes.
In large mixing bowl, mix egg yolks with melted butter. Add flour and yeast mixture and mix well. Put moistened towel over bowl and let rise for 30 minutes. Just before dough is done rising, beat egg whites until peaks form. Fold egg whites into risen dough. Add 3 cups sugar.
This is what the consistency should look like

Cook dough in Belgian waffle iron right away--don't let it sit for too long. 

As soon as each waffle comes out of the waffle iron, sprinkle each side with raw sugar. Cut each small square in half so that each batch makes 8 triangular pieces. They're best while they're still hot.
Christmas Dinner

Boeuf Borguignon

1 tablespoon good olive oil
8 ounces dry cured center cut applewood smoked bacon, diced
2 1/2 pounds chuck beef cut into 1-inch cubes
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 pound carrots, sliced diagonally into 1-inch chunks
2 yellow onions, sliced
2 teaspoons chopped garlic (2 cloves)
1/2 cup Cognac
1 (750 ml.) bottle good dry red wine such as Cote du Rhone or Pinot Noir
1 can (2 cups) beef broth
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves (1/2 teaspoon dried)
4 tablespoons unsalted butter at room temperature, divided
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 pound frozen whole onions
1 pound fresh mushrooms stems discarded, caps thickly sliced
For serving:
1. Country bread or Sour Dough, toasted or grilled and rubbed with garlic clove
2. 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley, optional
Preheat the oven to 250 degrees F.
Heat the olive oil in a large Dutch oven. Add the bacon and cook over medium heat for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the bacon is lightly browned. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon to a large plate.
Dry the beef cubes with paper towels and then sprinkle them with salt and pepper. In batches in single layers, sear the beef in the hot oil for 3 to 5 minutes, turning to brown on all sides. Remove the seared cubes to the plate with the bacon and continue searing until all the beef is browned. Set aside.
Toss the carrots, and onions, 1 tablespoon of salt and 2 teaspoons of pepper in the fat in the pan and cook for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onions are lightly browned. Add the garlic and cook for 1 more minute. Add the Cognac, stand back, and ignite with a match to burn off the alcohol. Put the meat and bacon back into the pot with the juices. Add the bottle of wine plus enough beef broth to almost cover the meat. Add the tomato paste and thyme. Bring to a simmer, cover the pot with a tight-fitting lid and place it in the oven for about 1 1/4 hours or until the meat and vegetables are very tender when pierced with a fork.
Combine 2 tablespoons of butter and the flour with a fork and stir into the stew. Add the frozen onions. Saute the mushrooms in 2 tablespoons of butter for 10 minutes until lightly browned and then add to the stew. Bring the stew to a boil on top of the stove, then lower the heat and simmer for 15 minutes. Season to taste.
Dutch Oven French Bread
¼ t yeast
1 ½ t salt
1 ½ c water
3 c flour
Combine all ingredients and let sit for 12 hours. Fold over once and form into ball. Heat up oven to 450 and heat up dutch oven with cover on. Place parchment paper in dutch oven and set dough in the middle of it. Cook 20 minutes with cover on and cook 15 minutes with cover off. Let sit for at least 20 minutes before eating so dough is completely cooked in the middle.

No comments: