Saturday, December 25, 2010

A Traditional Christmas Dinner

I know. You wouldn’t think I would tie myself to the same thing every year. DH has no trouble with repetition. I’m the one who gets bored easily. (Hmm. That probably bodes well for the marriage on his side of things.) I’m also easily distracted, as you can tell. Bright and shiny objects draw my eye to another vista.

Where was I? Oh, yeah. Traditional Christmas Dinner. You’d think I’d want variety, but this is one area where that is not the case. There’s something lovely about the tradition of serving the same meal every Christmas Day. And, let’s face it, it is only one day out of the year, so maybe the bored-with-repetition thing doesn’t come into play for that reason. Still, I tell myself that it is best for my sons, Brooklyn and Chicago, to have some traditions in their lives, yes? And now we have Brooklyn’s wife, London, in the mix.

But, truth to tell? It’s easier for me if I don’t have to think about it. I never spend hours planning the perfect holiday meal. It’s done, fini, terminado. The menu is in courses with a lemon sorbet “to cleanse the palate” served between courses. Ask if I get ridiculed by DH, Brooklyn, and Chicago for that one! Bless her heart, London is very supportive. Here’s the menu for today (and last year, and next year, and . . .):

First course: chicken broth with green onion, a hint of garlic, rosemary, and a dollop of sherry.

Second course: Prime Rib, Yorkshire pudding, gravy, mashed Yukon Gold potatoes (real lumpy—I like my potatoes to go down fighting), pears on lettuce leaves drizzled with cinnamon/pecan sauce, and peas and carrots.

Third course: I lied. I did change this course this year. We have always had Rum Cake for dessert. Apparently I was the only one who really liked it. DH would eat a small slice and then maybe one more before it hardened enough to build a house with. Brooklyn and Chicago eschewed it entirely. That’s not chewed. That is avoided.

So, in the interest of making a dessert they might eat, I am serving my chocolate cake with caramel/almond sour &cream cheese frosting. Yummy in the tummy!

Read my profile. I’m not much into measuring, but start with these measurements and use your Taste-o-Meter to adjust flavor to your taste.

Caramel-Almond Frosting

1 c cream cheese

½ c sour cream

1 T brown sugar

Jar store-bought caramel, divided

½ c slivered almonds, toasted

Whip together cream cheese, sour cream, brown sugar, and 4 T caramel. Use your taste-o-meter. Is it too tart for you? Add more caramel or brown sugar. Is it too sweet? Add more sour cream.

Bake your chocolate cake in two layers. Cool then de-pan. Place one layer on your serving plate. Spread half the frosting on the layer top (not the sides). Put second layer on top of the frosted layer. Spread the rest of the frosting on the top, not sides, of the cake. Artistically drizzle on more caramel topping. Sprinkle with toasted almond slivers.

I can guarantee there will be less of this cake left than my delicious and much-more-elegant Rum Cake.


Merry Christmas!

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