Etiquette Hell

General Etiquette => Life...in general => Holidays => Topic started by: gingerzing on December 03, 2013, 01:39:26 PM

Title: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: gingerzing on December 03, 2013, 01:39:26 PM
Because of some stories on the Holiday Hill to Die On thread, I thought this would be interesting. 

GlitterIsMyDrug had a lovely story about why her family serves brisket and the tradition behind it.

For large holiday meals, my mother or aunt will often serve a small jello salad*(usually with mini-marshmallows)  in honor of my Great-Aunt who always brought them to every family holiday because my father once politely took some and she always brought them because "Ginger's dad loves it so".  (he really didn't like them, but always had a small spoonful to make her happy.) My mom even has Great-Aunt Leona's pretty glass bowl that it was brought in. 

*Jello with fruit.  Very Midwest -especially Iowan.  Often made festive with mini marshmallows or the mini colored marshmallows.  :P

My tradition with DH is that I make homemade cinnamon rolls for Christmas morning.  We have that and coffee while we open stockings and presents.


So what do you have for your holiday (Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah ... whatever big holiday meal) that is traditional for your family?  Do you have a special story that you pass along for the younger generation?
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: Lady Snowdon on December 03, 2013, 01:52:38 PM
For Christmas Eve, we traditionally make fish soup.  It's pretty simple, and the ingredients can vary from year to year, but we always have to have red potatoes and celery in there, so our soup is red, green and white (I'm not really sure why - as a kid I thought it was because you had to have Christmas colors in Christmas soup).  I believe the tradition started with my grandmother's family living in Massachusetts, close to coast, where fish would be fairly easy and cheap to obtain.  The cost has gone up significantly at this point, with family living in Colorado and Minnesota (fish is decidedly NOT cheap in Colorado!), but we still make it, due to tradition.

Also during the Christmas season, my family traditionally makes whoopie pies.  I suspect my grandmother made them on a whim from a magazine recipe years ago, but she'd never admit it!  :P  Anyway, the recipe we have has been adjusted for living in humid areas, living in desert and semi-arid areas, living at low altitude and high altitude, altered based on what ingredients are available, etc etc.  I've seen the original recipe card, and there are so many scribblings and notations it's a wonder you can make out the recipe itself!  I have many many fond memories of making whoopie pies with my mom or grandmother, and then taking plates of them over to neighbors on Christmas Eve.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: ladyknight1 on December 03, 2013, 01:56:08 PM
Christmas Eve is equally precious to Christmas for us. On the 23rd, I make a breakfast casserole, divided in half. Half is baked on Christmas Eve morning for our breakfast, and the other half on Christmas Day. That means we only have to make coffee and get out the bread we have with it and breakfast is done with a minimum of fuss.

Christmas Eve is special to our family as it is "just us" except for a candle light and Christmas carols service we attend at our church.

We have a multitude of appetizers for dinner.

Dried beef cheese ball with crackers
Mini sausages wrapped in puff pastry
Meatballs in sweet & sour sauce
Layered dip and chips
Fresh vegetables
A decadent dessert

For lunch, we have steak with all the trimmings.

Christmas Day we usually have ham, but I am making Glitter's brisket with all the trimmings this year. We'll save the ham for New Year's Day.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: Amara on December 03, 2013, 01:59:00 PM
For Thanksgiving I like the following:
Roast turkey
Dressing
Gravy
Cranberry Sauce
Steamed fresh green beans (and offer sage butter)
Green salad
Tiny fresh fruit and cheese salad (Brie, raspberries)
Pumpkin pie
Pinot Noir, Merlot, or Cabernet

For Christmas my family usually repeats their Thanksgiving menu, which varies a bit from mine. But I like the following:
Chicken Bastilla ( http://simplerecipes.co/march-of-dimes-bastilla-chicken-moroccan-pie/ )
Moroccan Orange Salad (http://cooking-spree.com/2011/05/15/moroccan-orange-salad-with-red-onions-black-olives/ )
Green Salad
Steamed Green Beans, Steamed Artichokes, or Spiced Tiny Onions
Pie (fruit)
Pinot Noir, Merlot, or Cabernet; possibly champagne
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: cwm on December 03, 2013, 02:06:32 PM
Someone else who does homemade cinnamon rolls! That's the Christmas staple for breakfast, along with scrambled eggs, bacon, sausage, OJ, and coffee. Then again, my family usually hosts everyone Christmas morning for the family gift exchange.

Every holiday get-together on my dad's side of the family has deviled eggs. My sister hates the filling for deviled eggs, so my aunt always leaves a few out without filling, just the hardboiled egg whites, for her.

Thanksgiving always sees chocolate pecan pies. Holiday parties always see mom's homemade peanut brittle (more often peanut chew, it never gets quite brittle) and some sort of cookies. They're extruded through what looks like a caulking gun, and delicious!

In dad's family, they're probably still doing ham and turkey as meats for meals. Sis can't eat ham, I never liked turkey, and the family was always big enough to have both. Dad loves ham, so I doubt that's changed at all, but I haven't been there for a few years, and I'm not about to ask Sis about it.

I do miss the traditional Easter dinner my great grandparents had. It wasn't so much what kind of food we had, but all of us (great grandparents, grandma, uncle and aunt, mom and dad and sis and me) crammed around the dining room table. There was always a salad, and always mashed potatoes because great grandma's were so good, but the food didn't matter so much as the family.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: doodlemor on December 03, 2013, 04:15:29 PM
Someone else who does homemade cinnamon rolls! That's the Christmas staple for breakfast.......

I like to do them, too.  And.........mark your new 2014 calendar.  October 4 is National Cinnamon Bun Day in Sweden.

In the last few years I have researched my Swedish heritage, and have made Swedish foods for Christmas.  We have meatballs, ham, limpa bread, Swedish gratin potatoes, and Swedish desserts.  This has worked out well, because my family loves the stuff and it is especially good cold weather food.

The Swedish food has become our new tradition.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: heartmug on December 03, 2013, 05:18:32 PM
Ham is a family favorite.  So I make sure it is either served on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day.  I am known for my creamed spinach, so I am asked to bring that to family gatherings just as my SIL is known for her homemade pecan pie.

I ask each member of my family what they want for Christmas breakfast and I take the time to make it.  Doesn't matter if it clashes (one year it was 3 different types of pancakes and lemon scones) I have the time to make it and everyone gets what they want.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: starry diadem on December 03, 2013, 05:20:43 PM
Christmas Eve is equally precious to Christmas for us. On the 23rd, I make a breakfast casserole, divided in half. Half is baked on Christmas Eve morning for our breakfast, and the other half on Christmas Day. That means we only have to make coffee and get out the bread we have with it and breakfast is done with a minimum of fuss.


I have never heard of breakfast casserole. What's in it please, and is it sweet or savoury?
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: ladyknight1 on December 03, 2013, 05:50:50 PM
It is savory. You can use any type of breakfast meat you like, cooked. You add beaten eggs and dairy. I like to use sautéed onion and sweet peppers, but anything can work. You can use dried bread cubes, cooked and shredded or cubed potatoes or cooked grits or polenta as a starch component. I put cheese in the casserole and on top as well.

Ratios for a 13 x 9" casserole dish

1 lb meat of choice, cooked (I have used bulk sausage, bacon, ham or smoked sausage)
12 eggs, beaten until combined
1/2 cup milk
Vegetables, herbs and seasonings of choice
6 cups of bread cubes, cooked potatoes, grits or polenta
2 cups of cheese (I like reduced fat sharp cheddar)

Layer starch component, vegetables, half of the cheese, seasonings and meat in greased dish. Mix eggs and milk together, and pour over the other ingredients in the dish. Top with remaining cheese.

It can rest in the refrigerator up to two days before baking. Bake at 350 degrees F for 30 minutes, check halfway through to see if you need to add foil to prevent over browning.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: Library Dragon on December 03, 2013, 05:59:37 PM
I was just talking about this with someone.  We rotate between our major MEAT choices.

Thanksgiving it's always turkey, but we may add a ham as well. 

Christmas Eve is always fish.  If we have a group I will do the traditional Italian Christmas Eve of 7 fishes.  DS2 doesn't eat much fish, so he requests quiche. 

Christmas Day is always a honey baked ham.  Sometimes we add an additional meat depending upon the crowd.

Easter is always lamb.  This past Easter I did a lamb roast and made beef Wellington for the first time.  It came out really good.  I usually stuff the lamb with a parsley-walnut pesto.  No mint jelly is ever seen on my table  :P .

The sides are my time to really be creative.  They vary every year. 
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: Katana_Geldar on December 03, 2013, 06:18:42 PM
We usually have ham, as DH loves ham.

We also usually have fresh cooked cold prawns, just not this year as I'll be pregnant over Christmas.

We usually have stuffed mushrooms, because I love them.

We would normally have turkey, but my grandma is brining a piece of poked she cooked, so it's not needed.

And we usually have pudding with cream.

Other the that we just have what we like that's in our capabilities to make. Our menu is going to be mostly cold this year, with salads and pavlova which I'm making the night before and fruit for after. As well as crackers and dip and nibbles first up.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: kherbert05 on December 03, 2013, 07:01:31 PM
Christmas Eve - Uncle Eddies hamburgers. Think spicy meatballs but flat like miniature hamburger paddies served on mini buns.

Thanksgiving night and Christmas night Papa sandwiches. Triple decker turkey, lettuces, tomato, bacon sandwiches with Durkey's spread.

Orange Stuff - orange jello made with mandarin oranges, juice from the mandarin oranges and orange sherbert used instead of water making the jello.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: Kariachi on December 04, 2013, 12:05:16 AM
Thanksgiving is all traditional fare. Turkey, mashed potatoes, canned cranberry sauce, black olives, homemade dinner rolls with butter (really they're just cinnamon roll dough cut into rounds and un-cinnamoned), and any vegetables we have laying around.

Christmas I always make my bacon-cheddar scone (which I have taken to calling my Solstice Scone), yes singular, and chocolate chip cookies. Typically we have ham, but last year we bought a duck and this year we raised some so we could have it again.

New Year's Eve is always cheese lasagna. Always. With homemade sauce because I'm pretty sure my immediate family would die if you fed us the jarred stuff. We have the lasagna at around six, and then me and my mom break into the shrimp and cocktail sauce at around eleven.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: starry diadem on December 04, 2013, 01:53:39 AM
It is savory. You can use any type of breakfast meat you like, cooked. You add beaten eggs and dairy. I like to use sautéed onion and sweet peppers, but anything can work. You can use dried bread cubes, cooked and shredded or cubed potatoes or cooked grits or polenta as a starch component. I put cheese in the casserole and on top as well.

Ratios for a 13 x 9" casserole dish

1 lb meat of choice, cooked (I have used bulk sausage, bacon, ham or smoked sausage)
12 eggs, beaten until combined
1/2 cup milk
Vegetables, herbs and seasonings of choice
6 cups of bread cubes, cooked potatoes, grits or polenta
2 cups of cheese (I like reduced fat sharp cheddar)

Layer starch component, vegetables, half of the cheese, seasonings and meat in greased dish. Mix eggs and milk together, and pour over the other ingredients in the dish. Top with remaining cheese.

It can rest in the refrigerator up to two days before baking. Bake at 350 degrees F for 30 minutes, check halfway through to see if you need to add foil to prevent over browning.

Thank you!  I'll give that a try sometime. Only without the grits, since that isn't something we do here in the UK!

Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: heartmug on December 04, 2013, 10:37:20 AM

Christmas I always make my bacon-cheddar scone

That sounds so good!
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: Valentines Mommy on December 04, 2013, 10:41:39 AM
We don't have a set holiday meal. Lately, we've been making a lot of lamb for holiday meals. I also make pineapple upside cake from scratch as it's the only dessert DH and I agree on. I use the cook's illustrated recipe.

If we stay in Houston for Christmas, I'll be getting a duck stuffed with something (not sure what) from Hebert's again. The shrimp and wild rice one was heavenly 2 years ago.

That may be the start of our traditions.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: Outdoor Girl on December 04, 2013, 10:46:29 AM
Canadian Thanksgiving is the middle of October so not as close to Christmas as American Thanksgiving.

Our two meals are almost identical:
Turkey
Stuffing
Mashed potatoes
Cranberry orange relish
Mashed rutabaga (turnip, swede) with brown sugar

The other vegetables vary.  Thanksgiving is pumpkin pie.  Christmas is raspberry pie.  It used to be plum pudding but after my Mom died 10 years ago, we discovered no one but me really liked it.  And it is labour intensive to make so I haven't been making it.

Christmas morning has been chelsea buns lately.  Which is a cinnamon bun type thing with raisins.  I make these ahead and freeze them.

New Year's used to be ham, when my Mom was alive and we all were home for New Year's dinner.

We love turkey so it isn't unheard of for us to do a turkey for Easter dinner, too.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: dawbs on December 04, 2013, 12:53:02 PM
My family is as fiercely defensive of their Christmas Eve pizza as other people are about their turkey on Thanksgiving.

Many years ago, when Christmas made some shifts in my family, my grandma became the Christmas eve hostess (instead of her mom).  We kids had the idea of making things extremely fancy and uber-traditional--but my dad knew just how much his mom was struggling to keep up with everything right then.  He approached us kids with the problem, and asked if there was something EASY we would all like.
So we told grandma that as good as her ham/turkey/whatever was, we were being kids and voting in favor of PIZZA.  She asked if we were sure--we were adamant that nothing would do except pizza.
That was almost 30? years ago.
A few years ago, when my dad took over hosting, he tried to suggest we go with something fancy and uber-traditional--but my sisters and I knew how much of a struggle my dad was having with all of this--and we actually have no shortage of traditional/fancy/what have you meals with our family--this is our chance to buck all of that and enjoy the relaxed parents who don't have to worry about the meal.
So we voted for pizza.

And Christmas day dinner?  pancakes. :D
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: Mergatroyd on December 04, 2013, 01:40:13 PM
Our Christmas dinner is usually the same as our Thanksgiving dinner (turkey, mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce, gravy, etc) but what are really different is the deserts! At Thanksgiving, there is Pumpkin Pie and then a Berry pie (Saskatoon, wild blueberry, or huckleberry). That's it.

At Christmas though? :D We have puddings, and cookies (shortbread, gingersnaps, sugar cookies, anise almond/pecan, Santa Claus cookies), and if there are pies it is Pumpkin or Lemon meringue. Oh and the BUTTER TARTS! YUM.

I'm making a double batch of gingersnaps right this minute, and I really think I should have used a bigger bowl.. Lol.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: Hmmmmm on December 04, 2013, 03:18:25 PM
Thanksgiving is pretty much the same meal as it was when I was growing up and probably always will be.

Christmas morning is always pigs in a blanket, tamales and mimosas for the adults, apple cider for the kids.

I had sisters who were 10 & 13 years older than me. As the younger child, my mom knew I was always impatient for those lazy teen agers and later young adults to get out of bed so we could open gifts. To give me something to do and keep some peace she started having me make pigs in the blanket. And the deal was that when the pigs were done everyone had to be up and in the living room ready for breakfast. But my mom made sure to come up with a scheme to make it take a lot longer.
1. Melt butter and add a hint of sage.
2. Cook breakfast sausge in a little bit of water to get some of the oil out, let them cool, wipe them off really well.
3. Butter the baking pans.
4. Roll out and separate each of the rolls from the Pillsbury can and spread each side with butter and just a tiny bit of black pepper.
5. Carefully roll each one up so that they all matched exactly.
6. Put in fridge for 15 min.
I could only then start pre-heating the oven because mom said the rolls needed to rest in the fridge which now I realized just mean they were colder and took longer to bake. So what really should have taken me about 5 min from fridge to oven and another 10 to bake ended up being almost an hour long exercise, especially for a 6 year old. Oddly enough, our kids were never up before DH and I on Xmas morning, so I'm still in the kitchen painstakingly making perfect pigs while I awaiting my sleepy head kids to wake up.  The tamales is a Texas tradition.

DH's family always had them on Xmas Eve. His dad was in charge of Xmas Day breakfast for the kids and one year he just heated up left over tamales and it became a tradition with them. They really are the pefect breakfast food.

Christmas dinner varries from Beef Tenderloin to Prime Rib to Proscuitto stuffed pork tenderloin. We haven't had turkey on Christmas in more than a decade.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: rose red on December 04, 2013, 05:46:38 PM
Growing up, my family has baked ham because they are pricey except during the holiday sales.  Even nowadays when we can afford it at other times of the year, we still only have baked ham for holidays so it stays special.  Stays as something to look forward to.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: readingchick on December 04, 2013, 05:55:13 PM
Red cabbage is a given--my grandmother and her brother both immigrated to the US from Germany, and this is what they brought with them. Thankfully everyone in the family loves it :)
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: Ceallach on December 04, 2013, 06:46:03 PM
Wow some really interesting Christmas traditions I'd never have imagined here!     Christmas eve isn't a big deal for us, we just grab a quick meal, perhaps takeaways, and chill out.   

Christmas morning I make pancakes and have them with syrup, but that's a fairly recent tradition I've started.  When I was a kid we had fruit and snacks in our Christmas stockings (which were left on our beds) so ate that for breakfast while our parents slept in.

Christmas day in my family is all about the roast meal which we have around 2pm.   There's roast chicken, stuffing, roast potatoes, sweet potato, and pumpkin.  And some green peas or beans.  There is also a ham on the bone, usually served cold.   

We always take a break after eating the main course to open presents and just chill out, let the food settle and drink more.    There are always lots of chocolate and candy and snack food being consumed through the day!

Then later for dessert there is always a pavlova, fruit salad, and sometimes some Christmas pudding but always a store bought microwave kind as most people aren't big pudding fans.  It's more about the fresh fruit and berries for us being in this hemisphere!   I understand from my European friends that this is quite a contrast to over there where Christmas isn't associated with fresh berries!
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: miritree on December 05, 2013, 12:03:59 AM
Growing up, my mom had a thing about eating breakfast (and cleaning up!) before opening presents. I was the oldest of 7, so there were a lot of presents.

She would always get the Kellogg's variety pack. It had the 8 little boxes, and it was A BIG DEAL. We didn't get name brand cereal any other time, not to mention SUGAR cereal. We would always decide who got which box DAYS before Christmas.

My grandmother sent something like this http://www.fingerhut.com/product/Kitchen/Gourmet-Food-Gifts/Meat-Cheese/Figis-32-oz-Festive-Favorites-Gift-Assortment/pc/25281/c/29150/sc/29157/NI447.uts for many years. She doesn't do it anymore, but it's now become traditional. We would eat it on Christmas Eve.

My partner's family has "pink puke" on family dinners/get togethers. It's a pink Jello/cottage cheese/something else concoction that's actually really disgusting. Apparently one occasion they ate it and all got food poisoning. Hence it's called pink puke. Fortunately, we don't have contact with them anymore, so don't have to partake.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: emwithme on December 05, 2013, 10:19:09 AM
I'm in the UK so we don't "do" Thanksgiving, and therefore Christmas is traditionally the turkey meal.

I ate turkey every Christmas until last year.  Having cooked 18 turkeys over the years, I was sick of it.  I don't particularly *like* turkey.  I like the trimmings, but I can (and frequently do) have them with other roast meats.  There's just so much to do to make a turkey nice and moist. 

So last year, I asked DH what he wanted for Christmas dinner (he also doesn't particularly like turkey).  He said steak.

So steak we had.

Fillet steak, two each (such decadence), about 1.5 inches thick, served with jacket potatoes (with butter and soured cream), corn on the cob and mushrooms (for me) and peas (for hubby).

It was the most stress free, wonderful Christmas meal I've ever cooked and I vowed, while sitting there with meat sweats, that I'm never cooking a turkey ever again. 

My steak has already been ordered for this year.  However, I am going to roast a chicken on Christmas Day so that I can make leftover sandwiches and curry out of it!
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: lady_disdain on December 05, 2013, 10:51:10 AM
We celebrate on Christmas Eve. Traditionally, everyone would wait up, have a late dinner, go to Midnight Mass and, then (after midnight, so technically Christmas Day), exchange gifts. My atheist/agnostic family would skip Midnight Mass and the kids were sent up to get some sleep/nap at around 8pm and then be called down for Christmas Diner at 10pm. Then gifts would be opened at midnight.

There would be all sorts of appetizers and little snacks out for the adults, throughout the evening. The kids would get a light super before going to bed. Then, at 10pm, we would have fondue for dinner, since it is a slow meal, perfect for chatting and waiting for midnight. Dessert would be Christmas desserts: an assortment of dried fruits, sugared fruits and nuts, panetone (a sweet, fluffy bread filled with fruits and nuts), etc, followed by liqueurs and coffee.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: peaches on December 05, 2013, 03:08:44 PM
We have a Cinnamon Roll Christmas Tree for breakfast. My granddaughter and I made one years ago, and it became a tradition that the kids wanted to keep up.

Here's an example:

http://www.rhodesbread.com/recipes/view/1939

We use canned cinnamon rolls.

Another example:

http://hostedmedia.reimanpub.com/TOH/Images/Photos/37/300x300/exps15557_CB1224C80.jpg


 
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: CakeEater on December 06, 2013, 03:51:58 AM
It's becoming tradition on all sides of DH's and my families to eat cold ham and chicken and salads - green saland, potato salad, coleslaw, pasta salad - for Christmas lunch. Because of the hot weather here.

I really like roast pork or chicken with roast veges. When we (one day) get to host, that's what I'll be making again.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: NC704 on December 06, 2013, 09:11:07 AM
We started doing appetizers a couple of Christmases ago. Since there are only 6 adults we didn't want the whole spread. We do different ones every year. Each couple usually does 3 different apps and we eat when we get hungry. It's made our holiday very relaxed.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: Idlewildstudios on December 06, 2013, 05:52:33 PM
Christmas Eve is with my family and lately it's been tamales with the fixings.  My dad makes them and they are wonderful :)

Christmas morning is usually made ahead cinnamon rolls, French toast casserole or a make ahead sausage casserole.

Christmas Day is at my house with both sides of the family.  We always do a prime rib, puddings or rolls, a roasted or mashed veg, roasted garlic and something decadent for dessert.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: violinp on December 06, 2013, 07:48:42 PM
For Thanksgiving, we always have:
-Oyster stew (as a starter, but we didn't have this year because Dad, who makes it, was too swamped)
-Roast turkey (we had 15 lbs. for 6 people, and it was all eaten in 2 - 3 days)
-Mashed potatoes
-Dressing
-Green beans
-Carrots
-Deviled eggs
-Salad
-Pumpkin pie (for me and Gramps) and pecan pie (for everyone else)

We usually have some kind of beef for Christmas, but this year we're having duck with blackberry sauce, and serving it with wild rice and yet - to - be determined vegetables. I've never had duck, so this will be interesting!  :D
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: ladyknight1 on December 07, 2013, 09:54:22 AM
We looked at getting duck for this year. Perhaps for New Years Day.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: Acadianna on December 07, 2013, 02:09:21 PM
For Thanksgiving, I always make rice dressing, a Southern Louisiana/Cajun dish.  (I also make standard stuffing for those who prefer it.)  I grew up with rice dressing and can't imagine the holidays without a big pot of it!
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: Waterlight on December 07, 2013, 02:20:33 PM
I'll be spending Christmas with Mom this year... she and my stepdad are moving to Michigan next June and this is most likely the last Christmas I'll be spending with them for at least a few years.

When I'm at Mom's, there are two or three dishes that are served every year, without fail and regardless of whatever else is served:

Mashed potato casserole
Sweet potato casserole
Raspberry salad

These have been served EVERY year for holiday meals for as long as I can remember--and I'm not sure why.  Mom also makes peanut butter balls every year.  I will most likely bring some of my homemade (and VERY easy to make) fudge, and some Kristian Regale pear cider this year.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: turtleIScream on December 07, 2013, 03:23:33 PM
A few years ago, my brother joked, why couldn't Jesus have been Mexican, so tacos and enchiladas could be traditional Christmas fare? I answered that Jesus didn't eat ham or roast pork either, so why follow that traditional script? Now, Christmas lunch at my house is Meditteranean - stuffed pitas, hummus, garlic sauce, tabbouleh. So light and easy!

For dessert, we always have chocolate peanut butter balls. Just because they are so delicious.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: saffron on December 07, 2013, 09:23:29 PM
Thanksgiving is the usual Turkey / Potatoes / Stuffing that most people are familiar with - when we lived in Canada we celebrated with family in Oct. and usually ended up with 2 turkey dinners (my family and DH's family) now that we live in the US we have a 'friendsgiving' feast in Nov. with our friends who have no family around and aren't traveling. It's a lot of fun!

Christmas is a little different though.

My mom is French-Canadian - so we celebrate Christmas at midnight on the 24th with a 'reveillion'. This includes a midnight buffet of mostly appetizers /finger foods and a couple of meat pies and desserts (and lots of wine/beer/cocktails).

In order to make the buffet lighter - so we're not serving a full meal (and not have people starve to death between lunch and midnight) We started doing a raclette Christmas eve in the afternoon. We're talking old school 1/2 wheel of cheese melted and poured over potatoes and bread and cured meats using a machine that must've been bought in the 70s.. It's awesome! Especially since we're at the cottage and have been doing all of the classic outdoor winter things all day like tobogganing and building snowmen. 

After the midnight buffet and gifts we head outside for a round of midnight tobogganing and then sleep like the dead.

On Christmas day, DH, DD and I head over to his parents house for the traditional turkey/stuffing/potatoes dinner that evening.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: rm247 on December 08, 2013, 03:33:27 AM
Christmas Eve: Because of people working for at least the first half of Christmas Eve (quite normal in the UK) by the time the family had actually got together and settled in at my mothers, it was already evening, so we used to do steaks on Christmas Eve, which meant very little prep. In recent years however I have booked a restaurant and taken the family out for Christmas Eve dinner as my contribution to the hosting costs, this means, we can eat whatever we want and don't have to mess around preparing it or washing up.

Christmas Day Morning: After presents, it's a full English breakfast served with bucks fizz, this is always fun to do as you end up with two grills, toaster, 4 pans & a microwave running at once all timed to be served at the same time.

Christmas Day Dinner: We start with a fishy starter, we no longer run a separate starter and fish course as my grandma can no longer eat big multi course meals, so we combine the two and give her a small portion, Prawn, cottage cheese & avocado salad is the most common. For the main course, the meat changes year to year, Goose, Turkey, Bird O'Plenty, whatever we fancy that year, but it gets served with pigs in blankets (sausages wrapped in bacon) 2 kinds of potatoes, 3 kinds of veg (including sprouts & Parsnips) followed by Christmas Pudding. Then the traditional conversation about the cheese course and how nobody has room for it, but we'll maybe serve it later.

Boxing Day: Anything but a roast dinner, in previous years we've done duck legs, lamb shanks, wild boar stew, this t=year I'm doing venison steaks.

Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: Ceallach on December 08, 2013, 05:34:39 AM
I would just like to say I am really loving this thread.  It's making me think about what I want as our Christmas traditions going forward - DH and I live far away from our families so really we can start any tradition we want with our children!   (This year is a bit strange as bubba is too young to remember, so it feels silly to do much).

I love food being part of tradition, I think that is really special.    For me Christmas dinner will always be about a roast meal, but not sure about Christmas eve and Christmas morning.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: daen on December 08, 2013, 08:23:02 AM
On Christmas Eve day, my mother bakes six coffee cakes, from the recipe that is only used for Christmas.
After the Christmas Eve program, we eat the first coffee cake, cut into thinnish slices and buttered.

Christmas breakfast is buttered coffee cake, segmented mandarin oranges (fresh, not canned), bananas, grapes, cheddar, and coffee and juice.

Christmas dinner has morphed over the years. It used to be quite traditional (turkey/ham, etc), until we realized only two of us are really interested in the traditional. For a few years, I made fresh peppercorn fettucine. Later, when my dad confessed that he wasn't all that fond of pasta, either, we went to verenike - boiled dough pockets containing either cottage cheese or saskatoon berries -  served with cream gravy and farmer sausage (smoked pork sausage seasoned only with salt and pepper). This year, though, my sister is on a gluten-exclusion diet over Christmas, so we'll be having smoked turkey instead. Smoked turkey is the exception to the not-fond-of-turkey rule - there are Hutterites locally who raise turkeys and smoke a few, and said smoked turkeys are meltingly delicious. Later, there will be assorted Christmas baking, candy, and peanuts in the shell.

Thanksgiving dinner is in October, and is chicken fajitas, followed by pumpkin pie.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: kckgirl on December 08, 2013, 01:06:25 PM
Thanksgiving: Turkey, dressing, gravy, mashed potatoes, sweet potato casserole, green beans or some other green veggie, garden salad, and dessert

Christmas morning: While presents are opened, sticky buns are baking, and we enjoy them with coffee and orange juice

Christmas (mid-afternoon): Lasagna, salad, garlic bread (sometimes with dessert, sometimes not)
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: starry diadem on December 09, 2013, 02:00:17 AM
Christmas Eve is usually at my sister's, with DH and I taking my mother, who stays with Sis for the holiday - the traditional meal is cold ham with potato cheese. That is  simply mashed potatoes mixed with grated strong cheddar, with more cheese scattered on top and baked, so that the top is all golden brown with melred cheese. Wonderful stuff.

Christmas day is just DH and I, so no turkey. Breakfast is bacon sandwiches, lunch usually something  light (vegetable parcels ths year, in puff pastry, with a cheese sauce made with cream), and then our main meal in the evening at a civilised hour!  :)  Often we'll have a small chicken and all the trimmings, but this year we've decided on beef stroganoff with thin french fries.  Dessert is home made -  tiramisu, or  panna cotta, or maple custard pots.  I make chocolate mint cheesecake and gingerbread cookies every year, too, and there are always plenty  of chocolates/sweet things around to nibble on.

When Mum comes home at New Year, we'll have a Dukeshill ham with garlic potatoes and homemade piccalilli.

Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: rosegirl on December 14, 2013, 09:21:09 PM
On Christmas Eve day, my mother bakes six coffee cakes, from the recipe that is only used for Christmas.
After the Christmas Eve program, we eat the first coffee cake, cut into thinnish slices and buttered.

Christmas breakfast is buttered coffee cake, segmented mandarin oranges (fresh, not canned), bananas, grapes, cheddar, and coffee and juice.

Christmas dinner has morphed over the years. It used to be quite traditional (turkey/ham, etc), until we realized only two of us are really interested in the traditional. For a few years, I made fresh peppercorn fettucine. Later, when my dad confessed that he wasn't all that fond of pasta, either, we went to verenike - boiled dough pockets containing either cottage cheese or saskatoon berries -  served with cream gravy and farmer sausage (smoked pork sausage seasoned only with salt and pepper). This year, though, my sister is on a gluten-exclusion diet over Christmas, so we'll be having smoked turkey instead. Smoked turkey is the exception to the not-fond-of-turkey rule - there are Hutterites locally who raise turkeys and smoke a few, and said smoked turkeys are meltingly delicious. Later, there will be assorted Christmas baking, candy, and peanuts in the shell.

Thanksgiving dinner is in October, and is chicken fajitas, followed by pumpkin pie.

I'm no detective, but I suspect you live in the same general area that I do. You mentioning verinike with cream gravy, saskatoon berries and farmers sausage were the give-aways ;)

While that is one of my favorite meals, we stay pretty traditional for Christmas. Turkey, ham, stuffing, mashed potatoes, gravy, veggie mix, and plumma mousse. Along with whatever salads and sides get thrown into the mix. Topped off with pumpkin pie and a gazillion kinds of cookies and squares.

(I'm from Saskatoon!)
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: metallicafan on December 15, 2013, 01:17:58 AM
When I was a child, we would spend Christmas Day by my great aunt.   She would always make lasagne.  She is gone now, and I now host Christmas day every year.   I make lasagne every year in honor of my aunt.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: daen on December 15, 2013, 09:07:56 AM
On Christmas Eve day, my mother bakes six coffee cakes, from the recipe that is only used for Christmas.
After the Christmas Eve program, we eat the first coffee cake, cut into thinnish slices and buttered.

Christmas breakfast is buttered coffee cake, segmented mandarin oranges (fresh, not canned), bananas, grapes, cheddar, and coffee and juice.

Christmas dinner has morphed over the years. It used to be quite traditional (turkey/ham, etc), until we realized only two of us are really interested in the traditional. For a few years, I made fresh peppercorn fettucine. Later, when my dad confessed that he wasn't all that fond of pasta, either, we went to verenike - boiled dough pockets containing either cottage cheese or saskatoon berries -  served with cream gravy and farmer sausage (smoked pork sausage seasoned only with salt and pepper). This year, though, my sister is on a gluten-exclusion diet over Christmas, so we'll be having smoked turkey instead. Smoked turkey is the exception to the not-fond-of-turkey rule - there are Hutterites locally who raise turkeys and smoke a few, and said smoked turkeys are meltingly delicious. Later, there will be assorted Christmas baking, candy, and peanuts in the shell.

Thanksgiving dinner is in October, and is chicken fajitas, followed by pumpkin pie.

I'm no detective, but I suspect you live in the same general area that I do. You mentioning verinike with cream gravy, saskatoon berries and farmers sausage were the give-aways ;)

While that is one of my favorite meals, we stay pretty traditional for Christmas. Turkey, ham, stuffing, mashed potatoes, gravy, veggie mix, and plumma mousse. Along with whatever salads and sides get thrown into the mix. Topped off with pumpkin pie and a gazillion kinds of cookies and squares.

(I'm from Saskatoon!)

One province over - southern Manitoba. Probably still the same ethnic stream, though.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: Thipu1 on December 15, 2013, 10:56:13 AM
For some obscure reason, taboullah has become a staple of Christmas breakfast in our household. 

For Christmas dinner, we usually have a chicken or a small roast.  This year, we'll be having a ham slice with a rum pineapple sauce,  baked yams and frenched string beans.  I'm roasting a chicken today so we'll have a chicken pot pie later in the week. 
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: catbug on December 16, 2013, 03:59:45 AM
When people ask about our plans for Christmas, we always say that we keep it simple. We get up, start eating, then when we have finished eating, we go to bed. What that means is we graze all day.

Christmas morning we all get up, usually woken by mum as she gets so excited at the presents, and then we eat the chocolate Christmas decorations. My brother always tries to get a bowl of cereal before mum notices, but she insists he eat his chocolate with everyone else. I remember about 10 years ago my brother trying to argue with mum that he didn't want chocolate, he wanted Weet-bix, but mum said he would sit down and eat his chocolate decorations like everyone else since it was Christmas. Yes, weird family.

Next we usually have some sort of fancy cooked breakfast. Maybe scrambled eggs and smoked salmon, followed by some fresh fruit like watermelon or mangoes.

Then the nibbles are put out. Chips, crackers, dips, nuts, kabana, cheese, olives, pretzels, etc. That's for snacking on throughout the day.

Next we, well mostly me now, we start making the Christmas lunch/dinner. I usually make the baked ham on Christmas Eve (full leg with a maple syrup, orange marmalade and mustard glaze), and that is served cold. We then either roast a buffet turkey or chicken, and have potatoes roasted in garlic butter, and whatever other vegies we feel like. Mum has wanted a seafood Christmas dinner for years, but my brother isn't fussed on seafood, plus I looooovvvveee my ham, so she misses out. Sort of.

We usually have a starter of prawn cocktails, or last year we had smoked salmon and prawn on ciabatta with crispy pancetta. Was delicious.

Desert is always a tinned plum pudding, though again mum wants to change it. Sorry, if we have to put up with her chocolate for breakfast (trust me it gets real old real fast), then she has to put up with the ham and plum pudding.

After lunch / dinner (usually start about 2 or 3 pm, and ends about 5 or 6, we spread it out), we continue to eat the nibbles or make sandwiches with the leftover meat, or fruitmince pies. Then it's bedtime.

I love Christmas.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: Valentines Mommy on December 19, 2013, 06:37:02 PM
We're getting the duck! BIL and future SIL have never had one.

This year's Christmas breakfast: Eggs and bacon, mimosas and bloody Mary's and Monkey Bread.
Christmas dinner: Standing Rib Roast, roasted green beans with Parmesan, mustard mashed potatoes (yeah for the crock pot!), salad, marzipan cake and a Black Forest trifle. And lots of famy to help eat all of it!
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: mbbored on December 24, 2013, 11:05:22 AM
Growing up in North Carolina, with deep coastal roots, we always had shrimp and grits for Christmas dinner.

This year, since I'm on my own in Northern California, I'm keeping the cheese grits and subbing out local dungeness crab for the shrimp.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: Thipu1 on December 24, 2013, 03:59:04 PM
Years ago, we were in a sushi place for Christmas Eve lunch and heard a conversation from the next table.  The diners were two young women and one felt bad that she couldn't be with her big Italian family for Christmas.  The other was sympathetic but pointed out that the chirashi lunch was at least providing her with her 7 fish meal.  Both women laughed.

Since then, sushi has been our choice for Christmas Eve lunch. 
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: MizA on December 24, 2013, 04:08:39 PM
It's our first year as marrieds, and my first year not working Christmas since I became a nurse. Our new tradition is to have chicken and waffles and breakfast poutine in our pyjamas, with a coffee and whiskey and eggnog float. Followed by a nap. And then maybe some candy.

It's going to be a GOOD day.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: gmatoy on December 25, 2013, 01:27:12 AM

My tradition with DH is that I make homemade cinnamon rolls for Christmas morning.  We have that and coffee while we open stockings and presents.

Because we always had the big meal at my mother's, I insisted that we have a special breakfast at home. I make my mother's chocolate cinnamon rolls. I am currently baking the last of them now.
And now that we have the meal here with our children and their families, we have lasagna because it is made the day before and just thrown into the oven while we  do the presents. And we still have chocolate cinnamon rolls. :)
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: ladyknight1 on December 25, 2013, 10:12:45 PM
We had steak pizzaiola with pasta for dinner last night. It was amazing.

A new favorite.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: Library Dragon on December 25, 2013, 10:17:40 PM
I made a beef wellington for the second time. I blind baked the bottom crust and it was better. Less soggy. 
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: cwm on December 26, 2013, 09:52:00 AM
I learned some traditions at boyfriend's family last night, and I love them.

Boyfriend makes a hash brown casserole type thing, it's hash browns, sour cream, cream of chicken soup, cheese, and cornflakes. It's really good, actually, when it cooks right.

His aunt's family always does what they call "Carol's Birthday cake" for dessert. It's...well, I'm not exactly sure, but it's got yellow pudding-type stuff (it's supposed to be white, it's got eggs in it and they were commenting that maybe it's supposed to be egg white only, and the yolk is why it's yellow), whipped cream, something else white and fluffy, and Oreos sprinkled all over the top. It's delicious. I can't wait until the next holiday get together.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: betty on December 26, 2013, 10:41:35 AM
For Thanksgiving, we skip breakfast and start mid-morning with light appetizers (carrots and celery, olives, maybe some cheese and crackers). Then around 1 or 2 we have the traditional turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce, and a green veggie (usually green beans). If we have more than just the three in my family, we add more side dishes. A walk or hike in the afternoon, apple pie when we return. Hungry later? Have some leftovers.

For Christmas, we have a baked good for breakfast: cinnamon rolls, or this year I made banana bread. Then we follow my husband's family tradition* and have "make your own" sub sandwiches for lunch and dinner, along with raw veggies, cheese and crackers. We give and get so many food treats (chocolate!) for gifts that a big dessert isn't necessary!

*Between my husband's family and his cousins, they would have had 6 hungry teenagers for Christmas some years. That may be how this tradition started LOL.

(Growing up, my mother would cook a more traditional Christmas meal, usually a roast of beef. And someone always picked up pastries at the Italian bakery: cannoli, sfogliatelle, and more.)

Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: siamesecat2965 on December 26, 2013, 11:23:08 AM
i think my mom and i have found a new Christmas brunch/breakfast tradition. i bring bagles from NJ (can't get decent ones in VA) so we had that with cream cheese and lox, and mimosas. and coffee. and some christmas chocolate to round it off!  easy, and yummy.  i told her we'll be doing this from now on.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: kckgirl on December 26, 2013, 11:41:42 AM
I found and tried a new recipe for my pull-apart cinnamon rolls for Christmas breakfast this year. Everybody (except one person) thought they were much better than the older recipe that I always used. In the excepted person's defense, he is now a young adult and we have made the other recipe his whole life. He usually says, and did say yesterday, that the old recipe is good (true) and he didn't see any need to change it; however, everybody else thought the new recipe was much better, so it is now our recipe for Christmas sweet rolls.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: cwm on December 26, 2013, 11:54:13 AM
I don't think I'll be following through this year with the traditional NYE meal. For years it's been crab legs and shrimp, but I can't afford that this year. Even if it is only me and BF, it's too expensive. Which makes me sad, I love crab legs and shrimp.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: blarg314 on December 29, 2013, 07:49:16 PM

Christmas I do turkey and stuffing and gravy, etc.

My family's tradition for Christmas Eve is tourtiere, which I would probably do if it weren't for the fact that cooking the turkey, etc, takes two full days of work in my kitchen (two burners, toaster oven, microwave, no full sized oven).

New Years my husband takes over and cooks his traditional foods - soy braised vegetables, noodle soup with seaweed, sweet dumplings, pickles, sweet black soybeans, etc.

Canadian Thanksgiving I don't really do anything for, anymore.

Easter, as I can't find a decent ham here, I've taken to doing an Italy Italian multi-course meal.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: Roe on December 29, 2013, 09:01:12 PM
We have to have tamales for Christmas breakfast. Why?  Because both DH and I grew up with that tradition and now our kiddo's expect it too. It's definitely a family tradition.

Now that we live in an area where tamales aren't easy to come by, DH and I have to make some every year.  We are still working on finding the right combination.  But we *have* to make them.  It's a tradition!  :D
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: sweetonsno on December 30, 2013, 02:52:20 PM
Our Thanksgivings were mostly traditional. Now that I've had more exposure to other families, I realize that they were also a lot more abundant and with a greater emphasis on variety. We usually have a relish tray: celery and carrot sticks, pickle spears, black olives (to be put on fingers). If we have guests, it will go out before the main meal with crackers and cheese. We usually offer sherry as a pre-dinner drink. The main was always turkey (I started making a vegetarian alternative for myself later on). We had mashed potatoes, dressing (we never stuffed the turkey in order to maximize drippings), a quart or more of gravy (due to the abundance of gravy), jellied cranberry sauce from a can (I started making it from fresh later on), simply cooked veg of some sort (steamed or glazed carrots, steamed green beans or peas, maybe both), and some kind of sweet potato (mashed or glazed… no marshmallows, ever). Dessert was normally pumpkin pie, though we sometimes also have apple or pecan. Oh, we also had soft rolls.

Christmas usually was the same thing, though dessert was plum pudding with hard sauce, maybe some mince pies if we could find them. Occasionally we'd have ham instead, but that usually went for Easter. Ham was accompanied by scalloped or au gratin potatoes, peas or beans (again, done very simply), rolls, and a green salad.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: ladyknight1 on December 31, 2013, 01:53:02 PM
I changed things this year. We are meeting a newly divorced friend of ours for an early dinner and will have appetizers later.

Brunch tomorrow will be braised steak, hashbrown casserole, freshly baked doughnuts and black eyed peas along with hog jowl bacon. Should be delicious.

Tomorrow night is just appetizers for DH and I.
Title: Re: What do you traditionally serve for holiday meal and why?
Post by: Hmmmmm on December 31, 2013, 03:23:21 PM
I changed things this year. We are meeting a newly divorced friend of ours for an early dinner and will have appetizers later.

Brunch tomorrow will be braised steak, hashbrown casserole, freshly baked doughnuts and black eyed peas along with hog jowl bacon. Should be delicious.

Tomorrow night is just appetizers for DH and I.
YUM!