We’re without the next-gen here at Glover Gardens on Christmas Day 2017, so we’re throwing tradition to the wind and going out to a restaurant. Turkeys will not bake, smoke or fry here. Rolls will not rise, cranberries will not pop-pop-pop, and gravy will not be de-lumped. None of our prized sides will compete for best in show on heavy-laden plates. Our collection of Christmas salt and pepper shakers will not adorn an over-decorated holiday table (for context, see our post Setting a Beautiful Table – Whimsical Christmas) . SIGH.
But that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy our recipes at your own holiday table! Here is a Glover Gardens holiday recipe compendium, starting with breakfast.
Celebrate the Day!
Make-ahead is the name of the game with the one-two punch of Scotch Eggs and Sweet Potato biscuits for breakfast on Christmas morning. Find the recipes and their stories here: Found (and edited) Recipe: Scotch Eggs and Sweet Potato Biscuits: Family History, Love on a Plate.
Or you can make one of our breakfast casseroles; see Breakfast Club Casseroles: Ham & Green Chilé Strata and Broccoli & Mushroom Frittata.
Our millennials can make a mean breakfast quiche, which would be great on Christmas morning: What’s for Breakfast? Roasted Tomato, Mozzarella, and Spinach Quiche.
We’ve made the mistake in past years of having too many appetizers and getting full by turkey time, but the one appetizer we always have on holidays is house-made smoked salmon. Get the recipe here: Tom’s Smoked Salmon.
Another very simple and incredibly beautiful appetizer is the Rosemary Wreath. Read about it here: Rosemary Wreath Appetizer Platter .
The Main Event
We usually have two turkeys to ensure plenty of leftovers (turkey gumbo is the best!) and have tried a variety of recipes in the past. The Grill-Meister will do one outside (usually smoked) and I’ll go the baked route. For several years, I’ve used the spatchcocking approach, and the turkey is always very moist. Spatchcocking maximizes the skin surface for that crispy goodness and enables the turkey to cook more evenly than as a whole bird; read about it here: Spatchcocked Turkey. Say What?
If you’re thinking of frying a turkey for the first time, check out this recipe for a great set of instructions with a focus on safety: Found Recipe: Alton Brown’s Deep-Fried Turkey
For me, the side dishes are as important as the main course. We have our favorites; I’ve recently waxed poetic about our creamed corn: Best Creamed Corn Ever – Handed-Down and Upgraded Scratch Recipe from My Dad and Grandmother.
Another recipe that uses corn is one that I found in a magazine: Food Magazine Treasures: Serrano Ham and Corn Pudding . This recipe is a little off the beaten path for holiday dinners, but if you’re in the Southwest, anything goes, chili pepper-wise. I sneak this dish onto our holiday table about every three years, and someone (usually the Grill-Meister) says. “why don’t we have this more often?”
And then there’s the squash. I love all kinds of squash and am on a mission to get the Grill-Meister to tolerate it. A super-simple holiday side dish is here: Simple Autumn Side: Baked Acorn Squash.
Or you can go the soup and salad route, with Creamy Butternut Squash Soup with a Hint of Cumin and Warm and Yummy First Course: Toasted Goat Cheese Salad .
Brussels sprouts are in the “love ’em or hate ’em” category, but I’m definitely in the “love ’em” camp. If you’re with me, try this stellar treatment: Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Cranberries, Bacon and Bacon-Jalapeño Jam.
Or if you are a sweet potato aficionado, how about this: Found Recipe – A New Holiday Sweet Potato Favorite. These individual sweet potato goodies are a big hit, and straddle the savory / sweet taste market perfectly.
Another great savory side, and an alternative to the ubiquitous mashed potato, is our rosemary-roasted potatoes, AKA Simple Potatoes, Yummy Crunchy Goodness.
I just published the Mema Rolls recipe, finally! This is THE BOMB if you are in need of a homemade bread solution for your holiday meal.
Last Call: Sweets
The Grill-Meister can also bake, and he made this marvelous pie from Southern Living a few years ago (I’m campaigning for it to appear again this year): Food Magazine Treasures: Salted-Caramel Chocolate Pecan Pie.
I’m not really a baker, but I make cookies during the holidays, mostly at my mother-in-law’s request. This is her favorite recipe: Raspberry-Nut Christmas Bars.
Our go-to favorite in the cookie department at any time of year is the Glover Gardens Comfort Cookies, a version of the Cowboy Cookie (just call it an Everything Cookie). I just made a huge batch for our Musical Millennial, who is home from college and had a passel of friends over…not a morsel was left.
December 28th is “Christmas”
Don’t feel too sorry for us for doing that restaurant outing on Christmas Day; we’ll get our millennials back on Dec. 28th and will have our big family celebration then. Some of these Glover Gardens classics will be on the menu, and if there’s anything new, we’ll be sure to share it.
Peace, goodwill and happy holidays to you and yours, whatever joyous occasion you celebrate. Ours is Christmas.
Copyright 2017, Glover Gardens