Christmas: The Food

Did you have a very Merry Christmas??? I hope so! I think it’s pretty hard not to love Christmas. Even though I was in a bit of a funk and didn’t feel all that Christmasy this year, it was still pretty awesome. I got to spend a lot of time with my amazing family, got some fantastic gifts (so fantastic that they get their own post!), and ate my weight in some of the best food on the planet.

Our Christmas Eve tradition is to go to 5 o’clock mass, then come home and have wine, shrimp cocktail, and Jarlsberg . . .

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while we prepare my favorite dinner of the year: filets wrapped in bacon,

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twice baked potatoes,

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and some kind of vegetable

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(let’s face it–the veggie is really irrelevant).

My dad always gets my steak perfect–on the rarer side of mid-rare, and my mom’s twice baked potatoes are just about the best thing on the planet. Butter, sour cream, and parmesan cheese with scallions all smashed and mashed and baked a couple of times for extra lovin’. These potatoes were roughly the size of my face, and I unabashedly devoured the entire thing.

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The broccoli? OK, it was good, but it paled in comparison to the rest of my plate.

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Favorite meal of the year. Hands down. I’ve never understood why anyone would want to go out to dinner on Christmas Eve. Then again, most people probably aren’t getting this. I’m glad I’m not most people. :D

After opening some Christmas Eve gifts–PJ’s and ornaments–we had chocolate lava cakes for dessert. When I make these for myself, I lighten it up a little bit, but on Christmas Eve, there’s no lightening anything. Ghirardelli bittersweet chocolate, lots of butter, and eggs make for gooey, chocolatey perfection.

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Late Christmas morning, we had Michelle’s Baked French Toast with Praline Pecan Topping. I whipped it up on Christmas Eve with just a few modifications (I used challah bread, halved the sugar and butter in the topping, and used half milk and half half-and-half), then we baked it for 40 minutes and enjoyed it alongside crispy bacon and cold OJ.

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Then we proceeded to pick the praline topping off of the leftover French Toast. Too good!!!

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Dinner was especially exciting because A). My dad made a new recipe and B). He got to use the new Dutch Oven I bought him for Christmas!

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I played soux chef, chopping and dicing away, while Dad made us what I think will be a new family favorite: Osso Bucco.

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OK, OK, I know it doesn’t look like much sitting there in the pot, but let me tell you, this was good. No, incredible. I’d never had Osso Bucco before–it’s basically Italian pot roast made with veal shanks–but I’d venture to say this was a better than good effort. In the last 30 minutes of cooking, I made some creamy parmesan risotto to serve it over.

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Jealous yet?

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The sauce is tomatoes and an entire bottle (minus one glass ;) ) of Amarone wine, celery, carrots, onions, lemon zest, and 2 whole bulbs of whole garlic cloves. By the time it’s been cooking for a few hours, the garlic is sweet and delicious–not overpowering at all.

The veal gets topped with a cranberry gremolata, which I thought looked rather Christmasy!

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Dried cranberries, toasted pinenuts, flat leaf parsley, and orange zest–it really complimented the meat and gave the whole dish a nice freshness.

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Long story short: we ate well.

What did everyone else eat for Christmas???

{You know I’m all about the food! ;)}

6 thoughts on “Christmas: The Food

  1. Oh my gosh I am so jealous of all of your delicious eats over Christmas!! All of that sounds so amazing…especially the osso bucco! Wow, I am getting hungry just looking at all of this food haha. I think I ate a bit too many chocolate chip cookies and too much fudge this weekend, but oh well- it tasted great!

  2. Merry day after Christmas:) Your food looks absolutely amazing, and my mouth is watering looking at this! You really do look so much like your mom! My favorite Christmas dish is creamed onions. i won’t eat them again until Thanksgiving, which is a little sad!

  3. I wasn’t feeling very Christmasy this year either. It’s like it snuck up on me and now it’s gone since I didn’t take any time off of work and the weather is still hot as balls. At least, I assume balls are pretty hot most of the time.

    The food you had looks AH-MAZE-ING. Lava cakes are one of my faves. Since I had dinner at my hub’s family – a houseful of crazy Colombians – we had rice, pork, some baked ziti, and some meatballs. I swear his family always needs rice and pork. You have that everyday people! So, I just stuck with the ziti and about 80 oreo truffles for a side.

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