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 Post subject: Re: Christmas/winter holiday meal 2013
PostPosted: Wed Dec 18, 2013 12:21 am 
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Hello fine folks of the PPK, I am back from a looong hiatus from the forum (anyone remember me?). My return happens to coincide with a serious case of Christmas dinner anxiety!! I just found out my boyfriend's omnivorous family will be joining my family for Christmas dinner, and I'm in charge of the menu. My plan keeps changing but here's what I'm thinking now:

Kale salad (recipe?)
Lemon Garlic Fava Beans (http://www.theppk.com/2011/04/lemon-gar ... mushrooms/)
Cauliflower steaks (http://www.olivesfordinner.com/2013/11/ ... yster.html)
Wild rice pilaf (recipe?)
Something with green beans and/or carrots (recipe?)

Dessert will most likely be an apple cranberry crisp with vanilla ice cream.

Does that sound like a good menu or am I totally insane to combine those things? I know it's a little eclectic but I think the flavors might combine well. Feel free to be honest with me because I'm still very much undecided! and if you can recommend any recipes it would be much appreciated :)


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 Post subject: Re: Christmas/winter holiday meal 2013
PostPosted: Wed Dec 18, 2013 1:08 am 
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We are going to a house party in the countryside ... walking with their dogs! I cannot wait ... well, actually I can, because I have to but ...
anyway, I am taking lots of stuff to contribute to the table ... for Dec 25th I am going to make a Timbale of Crepes which is lots of skinny pancakes layered with purees & veg then bakes in a soufflé dish. The middle bits will be a leek & tofu custard, sweet potato & tempeh filling, oyster & porcini mushroom cream sauce & a green pepper & sage sauce ... recipe from a Colin Spencer cookbook.

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 Post subject: Re: Christmas/winter holiday meal 2013
PostPosted: Wed Dec 18, 2013 9:18 am 
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corduroy wrote:
Hello fine folks of the PPK, I am back from a looong hiatus from the forum (anyone remember me?). My return happens to coincide with a serious case of Christmas dinner anxiety!! I just found out my boyfriend's omnivorous family will be joining my family for Christmas dinner, and I'm in charge of the menu. My plan keeps changing but here's what I'm thinking now:

Kale salad (recipe?)
Lemon Garlic Fava Beans (http://www.theppk.com/2011/04/lemon-gar ... mushrooms/)
Cauliflower steaks (http://www.olivesfordinner.com/2013/11/ ... yster.html)
Wild rice pilaf (recipe?)
Something with green beans and/or carrots (recipe?)

Dessert will most likely be an apple cranberry crisp with vanilla ice cream.

Does that sound like a good menu or am I totally insane to combine those things? I know it's a little eclectic but I think the flavors might combine well. Feel free to be honest with me because I'm still very much undecided! and if you can recommend any recipes it would be much appreciated :)


This might be too middle-eastern in flavor profile to blend in with the rest of your menu, but I LOVED this wild and basmati rice pilaf from "Jerusalem". It's called "Basmati & Wild Rice with Chickpeas, Currants, and Herbs" and it's so delicious. My omni boyfriend really loved it, too. If you weren't totally attached to the fava beans (bookmarked that recipe, btw, because YUM) I think you could use the pilaf in it's place, since it has both rice and beans already. I posted the recipe for the pilaf on my blog:

http://www.braisenwoman.com/2013/10/coo ... -with.html

So you can check it out and see if it sounds like what you're looking for. Good luck on your dinner!

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 Post subject: Re: Christmas/winter holiday meal 2013
PostPosted: Wed Dec 18, 2013 4:12 pm 
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braisenwoman - wow, that sounds delicious! And it reminds me that I have never made proper caramelized onions and I have been meaning to do that... I wonder if I could tinker with the flavors to make it more "Christmassy" - maybe use thyme and rosemary and sage instead of the cumin and cilantro and such. Definitely going to bookmark that and think about it. Thanks for the suggestion!


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 Post subject: Re: Christmas/winter holiday meal 2013
PostPosted: Thu Dec 19, 2013 11:24 pm 
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teacup wrote:
We are going to a house party in the countryside ... walking with their dogs! I cannot wait ... well, actually I can, because I have to but ...
anyway, I am taking lots of stuff to contribute to the table ... for Dec 25th I am going to make a Timbale of Crepes which is lots of skinny pancakes layered with purees & veg then bakes in a soufflé dish. The middle bits will be a leek & tofu custard, sweet potato & tempeh filling, oyster & porcini mushroom cream sauce & a green pepper & sage sauce ... recipe from a Colin Spencer cookbook.


This sounds so yummy

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 Post subject: Re: Christmas/winter holiday meal 2013
PostPosted: Fri Dec 20, 2013 7:43 pm 
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I think I need to add Isa's new Eggnog Pancakes to my line up on Xmas day. I think my line up looks like this now...

Breakfast (A long breakfast that kind of heads into lunch territory):
Bagels from Vegan Brunch - my sister's special request.
Individual Panettones from Hannah Kaminsky's Vegan Desserts
Banana Eggnog Pancakes (No cranberries, but it is raspberry season here so probably fresh berries!) - http://www.theppk.com/2013/12/banana-eggnog-pancakes/

Skipping lunch, no time to prep that as it will be all eating a long breakfast and opening presents and staying in my pajamas.

Dinner:
Stuffed Thanksgiving Burgers - http://www.theppk.com/2013/11/stuffed-t ... ng-burger/
Whiskey Sweet Potato Mash - 500 Vegan Recipes by Celine and Joni (Not the other 500 Vegan Recipes by someone else)
Green Bean Almondine with a twist - Also from C & J's 500 Vegan Recipes

I was going to make gravy, but I think I might cheat and use a vegan gravy powder, a job I could even ask my sister to do for me. The Green Beans may become Roasted Broccoli yet. Although there is the potential all this will be cast aside and I'll make tacos.

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 Post subject: Re: Christmas/winter holiday meal 2013
PostPosted: Sat Dec 21, 2013 9:22 am 
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We decided not to go with a traditional roast this year - my friend is making Christmas bowls. I'm taking care of pre-dinner bites and dessert. I'm doing a cheese platter with four kinds of cheese: almond cheese with chives, almond cheese with walnuts, a tasty cheddar style cashew cheese, and another cashew cheese with chili. Also making red onion and cranberry jam, and caramelised onion dip. For dessert I'm making a chocolate, cherry and hazelnut tart, and a white chocolate and passionfruit cheesecake. A couple of days later we're having another Christmas event with my omni family and I'm making a gado-gado platter for the five vegans, and what has now become a firm favourite, an adaptation of the lemon bars from Joy of Vegan Baking, with coconut, passionfruit, lime and pineapple. I'm also making three types of fudge and chocolate dipped shortbread cookies.

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 Post subject: Re: Christmas/winter holiday meal 2013
PostPosted: Sat Dec 21, 2013 11:30 am 
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Karena wrote:
We decided not to go with a traditional roast this year - my friend is making Christmas bowls. I'm taking care of pre-dinner bites and dessert. I'm doing a cheese platter with four kinds of cheese: almond cheese with chives, almond cheese with walnuts, a tasty cheddar style cashew cheese, and another cashew cheese with chili. Also making red onion and cranberry jam, and caramelised onion dip. For dessert I'm making a chocolate, cherry and hazelnut tart, and a white chocolate and passionfruit cheesecake. A couple of days later we're having another Christmas event with my omni family and I'm making a gado-gado platter for the five vegans, and what has now become a firm favourite, an adaptation of the lemon bars from Joy of Vegan Baking, with coconut, passionfruit, lime and pineapple. I'm also making three types of fudge and chocolate dipped shortbread cookies.
Wow, this all sounds fabulous! I'm jealous of everyone's fancy cheese platters; I may have to actually get off my butt and try my hand at making some!

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 Post subject: Re: Christmas/winter holiday meal 2013
PostPosted: Sat Dec 21, 2013 4:27 pm 
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I made this one a couple of weeks ago and we ate it the next day and it was amazing. I just soaked my fruit for a couple of hours first. Just remembered that I hadn't knocked another one up, so soaking my fruit right now

http://thehungryvegan.blogspot.co.uk/20 ... -cake.html


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 Post subject: Re: Christmas/winter holiday meal 2013
PostPosted: Sat Dec 21, 2013 10:08 pm 
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Desdemona wrote:
Wow, this all sounds fabulous! I'm jealous of everyone's fancy cheese platters; I may have to actually get off my butt and try my hand at making some!


Mine's not so fancy really, I still am not brave enough to actually make cultured cheeses in case I poison anyone, so I've just modified this recipe and it's so quick and easy http://www.maplespice.com/2011/04/baked ... l-oil.html The cashew one I make is particularly good, it really is like a tasty mature cheddar. I add nutritional yeast, sometimes some liquid smoke or smoked paprika, and whatever else I fancy. They're always a big hit.

When I wrote out the things I'm making for Christmas I suddenly realised how much I have to do over the next few days, then I remembered I'm also making a caramelised onion and walnut tart, and the Chickpea and Artichoke Bites with Rosemary Aioli from Party Vegan! Argh! I also finalised the types of fudge I'm making: dark chocolate and cointreau, white chocolate and cranberry, and salted maple caramel and walnut. The cooking starts today!

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 Post subject: Re: Christmas/winter holiday meal 2013
PostPosted: Sat Dec 21, 2013 11:07 pm 
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I'm making cinnamon rolls for breakfast (or maybe cran orange rolls). Lunch/dinner (lupper as my mom calls it) will be chickpea cutlets, mashed potatoes, creamed peas, and something else yet to be decided. I wanted major comfort food since this will be my first christmas away from my family. My mom has already asked about facetiming while opening presents which sounds incredibly awkward. I think we might go for a hike in the afternoon since the mountains are all snowy and lovely. I've already made three kinds of cookies and I'd like to make a few more.

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 Post subject: Re: Christmas/winter holiday meal 2013
PostPosted: Sat Dec 21, 2013 11:55 pm 
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Growing up we always had sushi and fondue the night before Christmas. Then we had kringle in the morning and snacked all day on the assorted food gifts my teacher parents got from their students. Think Pepperidge Farms. I loved it.

These days I like to make Indian food. I spend a lot of Christmases alone, including this one, and it's nice to spend the whole day cooking.

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 Post subject: Re: Christmas/winter holiday meal 2013
PostPosted: Sun Dec 22, 2013 6:02 am 
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I usually have cashew nut roast with roasted veggies and gravy for a main but I think I'm going to do something a bit different this year, although not totally sure what. It needs to be something that I can make in advance to take to my parents house so I was thinking of making the thanksgiving burgers from the ppk blog with potato salad and a green bean salad.

For breakfast either waffles or pancakes with berries.

And I usually make a trifle for desert so I think I will stick with that.


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 Post subject: Re: Christmas/winter holiday meal 2013
PostPosted: Sun Dec 22, 2013 2:10 pm 
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Just posted this in the one on the UK thread, but thought I might as well post it here too.

I've just prepared my main course (mushroom & chestnut wellington) and it's now in the freezer, will lift it out on Christmas Eve or Christmas morning to go into the oven for half an hour or so - I'm working from now until Christmas Eve and won't have time to do the main thing on Christmas morning.

Basically I softened a finely diced onion and added a clove of minced garlic. Then I added about 400g of mushrooms - a mix of chestnut and oyster mushrooms, and sautéed for a bit, before adding some fresh thyme and salt and pepper. I then added a couple of handfuls of baby spinach and wilted it down, adding in a tbsp or so of breadcrumbs to soak up the excess moisture and then I crumbled in some chestnuts and wrapped all of the mixture up in some puff pastry, into a wellington type shape.

I'll serve it with gravy, some stuffing, roasted parsnips and potatoes, carrots and sprouts. Can't wait to eat it.


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 Post subject: Re: Christmas/winter holiday meal 2013
PostPosted: Sun Dec 22, 2013 7:21 pm 
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Desdemona wrote:
Nebraskalaska wrote:
I need ideas!

We're hosting Christmas at our house this year. I really, really hate repeating the same Thanksgiving foods for Christmas (3 times in November was enough, thank you), but my husband insists that we at least have mashed potatoes and stuffing (CARBS!). That's fine, I can compromise and have a few of the typical dishes, but I'm not sure what else we can make that will pair well with the potatoes and stuffing.

I'm thinking we will definitely have a big, fancy salad;maybe some roasted vegetables. I could really use some other ideas though!
Might you be able to at least mix it up by subbing roasted or au gratin potatoes for mashed, and making a different kind of stuffing? I'm thinking it might be fun to make a retro '60s kind of meal with au gratin potatoes, green beans almondine, and the vegan ham from Caribbean Vegan, and maybe some fancy rolls. It still says "holiday," but mixes things up a bit so it's not a repeat of Thanksgiving.

http://caribbeanvegan.wordpress.com/201 ... ean-vegan/


Thank you, thank you, thank you for posting that holiday ham. My hubby is omni and Filipino, and even though he is so great about loving the food I make for him, I know when it comes to holidays he kind of misses what he is used to eating. I showed him this recipe and he said the glaze sounded exactly like what he ate growing up. So I am going to make the holiday ham and serve it with white rice. Then we are taking the veggies and seasonings that go in pancit and making that as a side. And veggie eggrolls. None of it is traditional Filipino, but it is reminiscent enough that he will be so happy.


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 Post subject: Re: Christmas/winter holiday meal 2013
PostPosted: Sun Dec 22, 2013 9:45 pm 
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DEG wrote:
Desdemona wrote:
Nebraskalaska wrote:
I need ideas!

We're hosting Christmas at our house this year. I really, really hate repeating the same Thanksgiving foods for Christmas (3 times in November was enough, thank you), but my husband insists that we at least have mashed potatoes and stuffing (CARBS!). That's fine, I can compromise and have a few of the typical dishes, but I'm not sure what else we can make that will pair well with the potatoes and stuffing.

I'm thinking we will definitely have a big, fancy salad;maybe some roasted vegetables. I could really use some other ideas though!
Might you be able to at least mix it up by subbing roasted or au gratin potatoes for mashed, and making a different kind of stuffing? I'm thinking it might be fun to make a retro '60s kind of meal with au gratin potatoes, green beans almondine, and the vegan ham from Caribbean Vegan, and maybe some fancy rolls. It still says "holiday," but mixes things up a bit so it's not a repeat of Thanksgiving.

http://caribbeanvegan.wordpress.com/201 ... ean-vegan/


Thank you, thank you, thank you for posting that holiday ham. My hubby is omni and Filipino, and even though he is so great about loving the food I make for him, I know when it comes to holidays he kind of misses what he is used to eating. I showed him this recipe and he said the glaze sounded exactly like what he ate growing up. So I am going to make the holiday ham and serve it with white rice. Then we are taking the veggies and seasonings that go in pancit and making that as a side. And veggie eggrolls. None of it is traditional Filipino, but it is reminiscent enough that he will be so happy.
Yay! Making people happy with food is the best!

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 Post subject: Re: Christmas/winter holiday meal 2013
PostPosted: Sun Dec 22, 2013 9:56 pm 
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I usually hate holiday meals for various reasons, but now I'm excited: we are making enchiladas, guac, salads, and margaritas.

Anybody have a tasty salad dressing idea? It will just be a basic mixed greens salad, heavy on the arugula.

For Christmas Eve, we will do our grilled cheese and soup tradition, with the alphabet soup from IDI. I'd like so come up something more exciting than a Tofutti grilled cheese, but I also want to keep it simple.

I'm going to make cranberry pear pie, if I can find decent pears.

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 Post subject: Re: Christmas/winter holiday meal 2013
PostPosted: Sun Dec 22, 2013 10:18 pm 
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Lavawich, do you have Viva Vegan? There are a lot of lovely salad dressings in there that I think would go nicely with your meal. If you don't have it, PM me and let me know if you want something creamy or vinegar/citrus and oil based, and how you feel about spicy.

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 Post subject: Re: Christmas/winter holiday meal 2013
PostPosted: Sun Dec 22, 2013 10:20 pm 
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I do and have never used it. Thanks for reminding me. I'm a spice wimp.

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 Post subject: Re: Christmas/winter holiday meal 2013
PostPosted: Sun Dec 22, 2013 10:32 pm 
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What?! You have Viva Vegan and have never used it?! For shame! Is it because you fear the hot peppers that you haven't used it? There are plenty of mild recipes in the book, because as you go south of Mexico, things tend to cool down, sometimes to no heat what so ever. Terry explains this in the beginning of the book somewhere, along with how to make things milder if you don't want the heat in some of the hotter recipes (and how to heat things up, which would not appeal to you).

Anyway, VV salad dressing:
Cilantro-Citrus Vinagrette (P. 69) is quick and easy to make, delicious, and not at all spicy.
Freh Gazpacho Salad Dressing (p. 70) is a bit more work. It calls for one green chile pepper, which could easily be left out with good results.
Creamy Ancho Chile Dressing (p. 70) obviously has ancho chilies in it. They are some of the milder chilies. I don't know if you've tried them and know if they are in your comfort range or not.

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 Post subject: Re: Christmas/winter holiday meal 2013
PostPosted: Sun Dec 22, 2013 11:44 pm 
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I know. I'm hanging my head in shame. I just rarely cook these days. I hate it, but before I cook something, I ask myself if the physical pain standing/moving around the kitchen for an hour will cause is worth it. Usually I decide it isn't and make a Boca burger or Amy's meal.

I feel bad about this. I need to just suck it up and get back to cooking. Or at least baking, which I used to love to do.

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 Post subject: Re: Christmas/winter holiday meal 2013
PostPosted: Sun Dec 22, 2013 11:49 pm 
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Oh, yeah, I feel stupid. I managed to forget about your mobility issues. No shame. I take it back! Don't suck it up and hurt yourself just to cook. Cook books can totally be enjoyed as books, without cooking out of them. They are some of my favorite reading. Sorry for being so dense!

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 Post subject: Re: Christmas/winter holiday meal 2013
PostPosted: Mon Dec 23, 2013 12:14 am 
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I don't celebrate Christmas, but had a delicious Summer Solstice meal with my love this weekend. Luckily it was a fairly cool day so it wasn't a big deal to be using the oven lots. The mains were:
- Roasted carrot, pumpkin, tomatoes, zucchini, and garlic
- Mashed potatoes with roasted garlic
- Polenta-crumbed baked tempeh triangles, a la Kittee's recipe for tofu in Papa Tofu (made from homemade tempeh!)
- Basil-white bean sauce

Dessert was some kind of custard and fruit tart that my love made, it had a biscuit base, then layers of peaches, mangoes, and strawberries interspersed with custard. It was amazing.

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 Post subject: Re: Christmas/winter holiday meal 2013
PostPosted: Mon Dec 23, 2013 12:23 am 
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Rhizopus Oligosporus wrote:
Oh, yeah, I feel stupid. I managed to forget about your mobility issues. No shame. I take it back! Don't suck it up and hurt yourself just to cook. Cook books can totally be enjoyed as books, without cooking out of them. They are some of my favorite reading. Sorry for being so dense!


No, I like to cook! I've just been kind of wallowing and not trying hard enough to adapt. I'm sort of ashamed of myself that I've left that go. There are so many things that don't take long to cook that I could do, or I could use a stool, and just get help with getting ingredients and pans.

Part of it is that things are inaccessible in the kitchen due to space issues. So, my skillet is on the bottom shelf of a cupboard with things in it, so I usually need help to get it out. And the food processor is an old Cuisineart with metal inside parts that weighs probably 12lbs, and that is also in a bottom cupboard, so I need help with that too.

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 Post subject: Re: Christmas/winter holiday meal 2013
PostPosted: Mon Dec 23, 2013 12:24 am 
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Gunk, that sounds like an amazing meal. Can you pass some of that custard tart this way?

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