It’s Those Little Things that Make Your Christmas Dinner Extra Special!
Christmas Tips to Make your Holiday Meal Extra Special!
by Kathie FitzPatrick
You know how to make the turkey . . . you’ve been doing it for years! Your friends and relatives are coming over with a wide variety and array of side dishes and desserts. But how can you add a few special touches to the meal and the event without wearing yourself out?
Let’s try getting a little creative with the turkey dressing. You can either use bread cubes, fresh or from a dry mix or cornbread. Personally I prefer cornbread. Decide on the amount you need for your crowd. Double as necessary.
Combine in a large mixing bowl five cups of bread cubes or cornbread, 4 eggs, 1 chopped onion, 3 chopped celery stalks, I large chopped red apple, 1 cup chopped walnuts, 1 cup chopped fresh cranberries. Add a pinch of salt and pepper, and a dash of sage. Mix in bowl until well mixed and moist.
Stuff the turkey before putting in the oven. I always suggest a foil tent loosely on top of the turkey. Bake according to the instructions for your size of bird. Rub a little olive oil on top with light salt and pepper. Place the extra stuffing in a greased baking pan. Later as turkey juices emerge, use a long plastic kitchen pump with bulb to remove juices and add to the turkey dressing in the pan. You can make turkey gravy from a mix if you prefer, adding some of the juices of the baking turkey to the mix as it thickens in the pan on the stove. Bake stuffing in pan with juices in the oven about 15 minutes at 400 degrees or until golden brown.
Let’s talk about that cranberry sauce. This will make you a star!
Two cans 14 oz size whole berry cranberry sauce
3/4 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 cup chopped fresh cranberries
shredded orange peel, about 1 tsp
1/2 cup liquid orange juice concentrate
1 TBS brown sugar * 1 pinch cinnamon
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In medium size sauce pan on the stove on medium heat combine all ingredients. Bring to medium heat or to just heat through and through. Remove from heat and store in containers in fridg until ready to use. Can be frozen for future use as well. This will bring a special spark to your holiday turkey dinner!
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Lighted Christmas Snowballs
LIGHTED ICE CREAM SNOWBALLS- a very nice Christmas tradition! Get one or two cartons of Dreyer’s vanilla ice cream. Scoop out enough to make balls about 4-5″ inches in diameter. Put soft Baker’s coconut (buy one or two bags) on wax paper, roll liberally in coconut. Put small candles at the top, like birthday cake candles, in Christmas colors like white, red or green. Put back in freezer to harden, decorate at a separate time.
For freezer storage: Use covered tupperware type containers, lined with wax paper to store in freezer.
Get pre-made green frosting with decorator tips. Use the leaf tip and put one leaf on each side at the top, leaving room for the red berries. Use red-pre-made frosting, using the straight tip to make the small round berries on top. Cover and freeze until serving. Get those paper doilies to serve them on a nice plate. Light. Serve to your guests and family.
Try to carefully eat the ice cream and keep the candle burning to the end. This is kind of a fun game to play with a group of people! I tried posting this on Facebook one year, and asked people to send pictures of their snowballs. It was a fun idea!
Go to my Kitchenaid Artisan article, scroll down to the end for a quick Christmas sugar cookie recipe. Decorate with the kids. Have fun!