Tuesday, December 8, 2009

To Oink or Gobble....That is the Question!

by Jeanne Adams and Cassondra Murray

Ahhhhhh, the Merry Holiday Season! What doth it mean to thee?

To me, it means a lot of wonderful COOKING!!! Yeah!

Everthing loading the table from stuffing to mashed potatoes, to sweet potoato casserole, to corn pudding, to yeast rolls and gravy and fixin's. Then there's all the desserts and side dishes. Ohhhh and the china and silver that make their gorgeous, shiny presence on the table as well.

Then there's the magnificent smells emantating from the stove and oven and broiler and grill...ahhhhhh!

But there's a big debate around our house, and evidently around the Lair. Yes, yes, it's true, you guessed it its....

(Drum roll please!)

Ham or Turkey?

My dear evil twin Cassondra and I were having this discussion recently. And oddly enough, on opposite sides of the table, so to speak. So we thought we'd present the debate to you, our dear readers, and get your take on the matter.

As for me, I fall on the oink-oink-oink HAM side. While I adore turkey and love it for Thanksgiving, there's just nothing like a pineapple-and-clove-laden ham for the Holidays.

Cassondra: Oh, c'mon. Honestly? There's nothing like a giant TURKEY coming out of the oven.

Jeanne: Well, yeah, at Thanksgiving. But for Christmas, you need Ham.

Cassondra: Right. It must be my country upbringing. I can't help it. We got turkey only twice a year at my house. And watching mom fix that turkey and smelling it cooking? OH MY! I'm sorry, but at heart, even at Christmas I am a Turkey Girl.

Jeanne: Turkey Girl. Snork. Guess that makes me Ham Girl. Hahahahah!

Cassondra: If the apple fits....

Jeanne: Or the stuffing. Grins.

Cassondra: Well, here's another question. White or dark meat? I like dark meat. Everyone around me likes white meat. And that's just fine. MORE DARK MEAT FOR ME! Bwahhhahahaha!

Jeanne: Okay, we DO agree on that. Dark meat, alll the way! Yum! So what else did you have with your turkey, at Christmas?

Cassondra: Oh, we had a traditional meal every year. It never varied. Turkey, with an amazing and simple stuffing made from light bread and celery and onion and lots of sage. Green beans, corn, mashed potatoes with homemade gravy, and cranberry sauce, plus my mom's homemade biscuits. Okay, I'm salivating.

Jeanne: Oooooh, yummmy! Sounds fabulous. For me, it's ham, covered with pineapple and cloves, sweet potato casserole (no marshmallows, eeeew!), corn, mashed potatoes, stuffing, green beans - you know, Cassondra, good old shelley beans! - asparagus casserole, and spiced apples too. Hmmmm, lets see what else? Oh, by the way, we skip the cranberry sauce. For some reason, I'm the only one who eats it and I always hate to see it go to waste.

Now, I like turkey too, but I have to ask, why turkey instead of ham?

Cassondra: The cool thing that tips the scale in favor of turkey at both holidays, for me, is that my mom made these awesome little treats we call "dressing balls." She took the light bread stuffing mixture, added a bit more moisture so it would cling together a little, then she'd roll it up inot little balls about the size of a truly satisfying meatball. Then she'd bake them in the oven at the end of the turkey's roasting. They came out brown and crispy on the outside, soft and steamy and sagey on the inside. ONLY at the holidays. And once at Thanksgiving was never enough. Still isn't. So, despite my getting tired of turkey leftovers by about a week after Thanksgiving, I'm ready again at Christmas. You just can't go wrong cooking a turkey.

Jeanne: Now, for me, those endless leftovers are one of the things that tips the scale for me in favor of ham. I love dressing, and gravy, but apples and cinnamon and ham just make my mouth water. I'm not a huge fan of dressing, but those meatball sized helpings actually sound good. (Anybody ever made a Yule log, like the one at the right? Tell all!)

Cassondra: Yeah, the leftovers thing is a pain, but for me, I fall firmly on the side of fowl. Fow's that for falliteration?

Jeanne: SNORK! Well, I guess that leaves me happily parading on the party-side of pork!

What about you, dear Banditas and Bandita Buddies?

Are you on Team Gobble or Team Oink?

Ever do both?

Favorite side-dishes?

C'mon, it's an all out battle between bird and beast! Let the GAMES BEGIN!!!

158 comments:

Nancy said...

Turkey! I'm a turkey pers--uh, eater!

Nancy said...

Oh, it's me! Whoo-hoo! I can really use somebody to do some work around here, clear stuff out to make room for decorations. The dog makes a great supervisor, too. And she doesn't trust the GR any farther than she can see him.

And she looooves chicken as entree.

GR, prepare to work!

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Drat! One for the Turkey team. :> Oh, and Nancy, congrats on the GR too. Put him to work, darlin!

I know Herself (the dog) will make a great supervisor.

Nancy said...

My parents did both turkey and ham. I quit eating ham a few years back--read an article about how comparatively smart pigs are and just couldn't go there anymore--and the boy doesn't like it, so the dh has given it up, too. Takes a long time for one person to eat a ham.

And we had ham at other times of the year. Turkey, as with Cassondra's family, was ONLY at Thanksgiving and Christmas.

I love sweet potatoes, though, and we always had green beans. And dressing with gravy. And the dh makes a fabulous cranberry compote from actual cranberries (though I can still be perfectly happy with the stuff out of a can we always had when I was growing up--slid right out still bearing the imprints of the can shape and was totally sliceable. Probably had all kinds of weird junk in it to make it hold its shape.) I prefer the taste and texture of the home-made, but the canned still holds memories.

And for me, big parts of any holiday are cherishing old memories and making new.

Nancy said...

Thanks, Jeanne. Yes, she'll keep him busy while I'm off giving a quiz, the semester's last! And I think he's a little afraid of her, which always helps.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Oh! The can of cranberry sauce! Grins. I too can remember the can imprints as it was sliced into biscuit sized slices. Now that cranberry compote...hmmmm. Sounds good.

As to sweet potatoes, I've never met a dish of them I wouldn't eat, barring the ones with marshmallows. Can't abide marshmallows on sweet potatoes (tho' that comment may cause even MORE debate!) It just makes them tooooo sweet. Grins.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Uh-oh. You just let the secret out that you're poppin' a quiz tomorrow! Think any of your students read the blog?

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Ohhh, wherefore art thou, ham-lovers? Grins.

I'm off to bed to dream of...ham. SNORK!!!

(And perhaps other pork products, who knows?)

limecello said...

Erm... for Christmas... neither? :P We don't have a "traditional" food. Also... :X I don't like ham, so if I had to pick a side, I'd go with turkey :D

And... now I'm hungry >.<

Congrats on the GR, Nancy!

chelleyreads said...

with all the talk and pictures of food... i'm getting hungry!

i'd have to go with ham. i agree with jeanne that turkey's for thanksgiving but ham's for christmas--not that i celebrate christmas but i don't think i can take another week of leftover turkey right so close after thanksgiving

congrats on the GR nancy :)

Virginia said...

Congrat Nancy on nabbing the GR today!

For me its the turkey, dumplings, dressing mashed potatoes,green beans home made yeast rolls. We have it all. We also have country ham. We have the country ham cook at a small IGA store near where my sister lives, because there is a man there that can cook one of the best country hams I have ever ate, they are awesome. So at Christmas we have one feast at my sister's house and we all take left overs home for the next day.

Cassondra said...

Nancy said:

Turkey! I'm a turkey pers--uh, eater!



YAY! Chalk one up for TURKEY WOO HOO!!!!!

And congrats on the...uh...UNroasted bird, Nancy. Don't be too hard on him. He takes a lot of abuse around the holidays, getting mistaken for a turkey and all....

Cassondra said...

Virginia said:

there is a man there that can cook one of the best country hams I have ever ate, they are awesome. So at Christmas we have one feast at my sister's house and we all take left overs home for the next day.


OOOOHHHHHHH! Virginia. I bet I could get to that IGA from here. We can't be THAT far apart, me being in Kentucky and all....I may have to hit you up for that. (slurp) I LOVES me some country ham. (slurp)

flchen1 said...

LOL!! Jeanne and Cassondra, you two crack me up! I have to say that I love both! But actually, my mom tended to go with prime rib for Christmas. Mmm... And definitely, dark meat all the way!

My youngest would definitely vote for ham (also apparently know as "red chicken" ;))

Congrats on the GR, Nancy! Put that bird to work!

Helen said...

Congrats Nancy I hope you can keep him working

What a great blog well let me see. Our family doesn't eat a lot of turkey and as a child Mum only cooked turkey if she was given one but we always had ham, roast pork and chicken with roasted potatoes pumpkin peas beans and cauliflower with gravy then Christmas pudding and custard yummy.

When I started doing Christmas lunch myself I stuck to the same things but we can buy a seasoned turkey thigh or breast roll that comes ready to cook and I have been getting these for a while now and love them I prefer the thigh, but last year my son was given a
5 kg turkey by one of his clients and his boss is Greek and he stuffed it with the best stuffing I have ever tasted and I cooked the turkey it was beautiful and we are getting one this Christmas as well.

The vote is for ham sorry Cassondra it will always be my favourite at Christmas closely followed by the roast pork with the crackling but I do love the turkey as well

This post has made me so excited that Christmas is very close I love the food. Now all I have to do is get the Christmas cards written out finish the shopping get the tree up LOL

Have Fun
Helen

Jane said...

Congrats on the GR, Nancy.

Last year was the first time we had ham for Christmas. My dad did a great job and it was delicious. He didn't use the glaze that came in the package. I think we'll be having turkey this year. I look dark meat, too. I love green bean casserole and stuffing.

PinkPeony said...

Hi!

We do a ham, a turkey and a prime rib and usually everyone goes after the prime rib. I make a corn pudding that's got bacon, grits, cheese and a fried shallot topping every year and I am sick of making it, but every year, someone asks...you are going to make that corn thing, right? My mom does a cranberry jello mold which is very good but I spend a couple hours pretreating the red stains on my tablecloths and napkins afterwards! I love sweet potatoes. My new spin..I peeled and cut them lengthwise and roasted them, then tossed in a roasted fresh pineapple, sliced up with a tiny bit of brown sugar. I like the colors and it was yummy and very nutritious.

PJ said...

Congrats, Nancy! It's been some time since the GR visited with you, hasn't it?

Jeanne and Cassondra, I'm going to come down firmly on the fence with this one. We have turkey and ham and I love them both!

Growing up it was turkey on Thanksgiving and ham on Christmas. Most of my married life was the same and that tradition continued with my family of the heart after my husband died. But, four years ago the younger child (then 7) developed a love affair with pigs and gave up all pork products. (This was a child who had previously inhaled pork!) She was very serious about this sacrifice so, to humor her that year, we added a turkey to the Christmas dinner. We knew this was just a passing phase and that the next year we'd be returning to the solo ham. Well, here we are four years later. She hasn't touched a single pork product in all that time and the turkey/ham combo has become our new Christmas tradition. And really, how can you lose with both gobble and oink? :)

PJ said...

Pink Peony, that sweet potato dish sounds fabulous! I'm definitely trying it!

hrdwrkdmom aka Dianna said...

I can't decide, and I usually have both. Just a little ham and a little turkey, left overs don't last long enough to worry about it. I will put in this one point though, I think you can do way more with ham leftovers than with turkey left overs. As far as ham for Christmas, well you do have to fix pork for New Years so you can use the ham from Christmas.

Deb Marlowe said...

I'm going all rebellious this year and having beef!

Sorry girls!

I am looking forward to the noodles that my grandma used to fix with beef broth. Yum!

Gillian Layne said...

My mom will make a turkey. I'm having a ham. I love ham leftovers; ham and beans, ham and scalloped potatoes. Ham salad! yum.

Favorite side dish? This year it's my daughter's strawberry pretzel salad. Totally yummy, and you can make it with Splenda if need be.

PJ said...

Gillian, enjoy the strawberry-pretzel salad. That's one of those quirky food combos that has stood the test of time. It's been one of my favorites for more than 30 years. :)

Caren Crane said...

Oh, Nancy, you got the GR!! Good luck getting him to help with decorating, though. He's a bit lazy!

I am firmly on Team Oink! I adore turkey at Thanksgiving, no doubt. But Christmas is all about ham, my family and I agree.

My mother sent home the turkey carcass with me this year, which was awesome. I made turkey pot pie and a great turkey curry. I also had tons of broth and made my favorite barley and lentil soup with it. It was all excellent! I'll look forward to it again next year, too.

But come Christmas, I'll be salivating for some ham! Of course, NC does produce more pork products than any other state in the USA, so...

Barbara Monajem said...

Gobbler for sure! With stuffing (not dressing, although I do have a great sweet potato dressing recipe), mashed potatoes, gravy, root veggies such as rutabagas and parsnips, and homemade (NOT canned) cranberry sauce.

I'd love to try a terducken some day instead, as long as I don't have to do all the de-boning.

The Romance Dish said...

Oh, we definitely do both ham and turkey for Christmas. My hubby would be devastated if we didn't have a gobbler. ;) The side dishes are very similar to our Thanksgiving ones: sweet potato casserole, mashed potatoes, green beans, etc. Can you say carbs? LOL


Nancy, congrats on the GR! I would definitely put him to work!!

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

LIme! Sigh. ANOTHER Turkey person. Ahhhh, well. Outnumbered by fowl people....snork!

So, if you don't have "traditional" food, what's to eat at your house at the holiday? Anything cool? A friend of mine always has tamales and empanadas along with other fixin's. Do you do anything like that or is it just pot luck?

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Chellyreads! YEAH!!! Finally another ham-er to stand up with me. Chelly, we celebrate all kinds of things around here including Yule and occasionally Channakuh with our neighbors. And since the kids learned about the "new" holiday of Kwanzah and First Night, well, it's holiday central 'round here.

And ham goes with ALL of it! Whoohooo! :>

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Virginia, you're a woman after my own heart...why not have it all, turkey AND ham! :>

Oh, and having someone else make it's pretty good too! Ha!

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

(Yep, there's the Fowl Fanatic now) Hey Cassondra! Ohhh, you came over to the Ham Side in your subsequent post, admitting the joys of country ham. Bwah-ha-ha-ha!

Grins.

Hey, you're right about the GR. He does get a lot of grief about this time of year. Not that I have MUCH sympathy mind you...

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Fedora! YUM!! Prime Rib? Okay, I'd come to your Mom's house for Christmas. Grins. Love me some prime rib.

Red Chicken. SNORK!! Love that.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Oh, Helen, you've made me hungry too and it's only breakfast here. Hmmmm, ham and eggs anyone? Grins.

Pork with cracklin'? I wonder if that means the same thing Down Under as it does Down South? Grins.

Now, you'll also have to explain what a turkey breast ROLL is too...sounds intriguing!

Christie Kelley said...

I'm on team turkey too. And yet, I still have to make a small ham for my son who loves ham. So both will be coming out of my oven on Christmas day. I might even sneak a bite of ham but I save myself for the turkey. And like Cassondra, dark meat for me!

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Jane! Chalk up another person for the Dark (meat) Side of the house! :> That's three of us - you, me and Cassondra.

BTW, I never use the glaze for the Ham either. Does anyone out there use it? If so, pros? Cons? :>

Fedora, I adore green bean casserole too. I just made sweet potato, asparagus and pineapple casseroles last night for my DH's office party. My house smells great. :>

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Hey Pink! That corn pudding sounds d'lish! I'd probably be asking you to make it too. I like the sound of the roasted sweet 'taters too. Yum.

Everyone goes for the prime rib? Really? Hmmmmm.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Hey PJ! Well, both is just better, isn't it? Of course Pink's tradition of red, white and pink (prime rib, turkey and ham) makes a lot of yummy sense to me too...

Maybe I'll have steak and eggs. Gosh, I'm hungry!

Had to laugh about the previous ham-fan who went no-pork. Nancy said she did too, much to her DH's disappointment.

Ain't happenin' 'round here, I can tell you that. :>

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Yeah! Another Ham-er! Thanks Dianna, I was beginning to feel so lonely....sniffle....Grins.

See? I think you've put your finger (or carving knife) on it - you can do so much with ham leftovers. Of course, there are so few leftovers 'round our house at Thanksgiving with my husband, sons, nephews, neice, and all, not to mention ME!

Deb said...

My entire family loves eating turkey. This year, though, we are having both ham and turkey. Not sure why....We usually have ham on Easter Sunday. I love all the trimmings that go along with turkey. It's a thing in our family (my dad's mother started it) to also put sliced apples and prunes in the turkey. They really do add flavor. My sister makes an excellent chopped cranberries-apple-orange side dish. Yummy!
Not many people like mince pies, but we're having that as well as pumpkin pie and caramel pecan pie this year.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Mornin' Deb! Ooooh, you rebellious thing you! :> Beef! The first red meat! Snork.

Whatcha fixin?

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Gillian...strawberry pretzel salad? Really? Tell us about it?

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Caren, my Ham Teammate! :>

Had to LOL about NC being the pork capitol of the US. Maybe that accounts for my fondness. :>

Now tell me about this Turkey curry...

(Jealous of the turkey broth for recipes too, btw...I don't think that far ahead, alas!)

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Okay Barbara, either that was a typo or you've invented a new Fowl.

A terducken? Really?

Beth said...

When I was growing up we always had ham at Christmas and I've been known to bake a ham for the holidays since my husband loves it, but I'd much rather have turkey *g*

Actually, this year I'm craving Italian. I may even do a version of the Night of the Seven Fishes for Christmas Eve :-)

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

It's the Dish! What dish could be more romantic than ham? It's pink!

Grins.

But gobbler's the fav at the Dish, eh?

Deb said...

Hi, Beth. Usually, for Christmas, my family chooses a different country and we make a typical Christmas meal of that origin. (My sisters have in-law dinners so don't want two turkey dinners. Of course, that leaves my family and my folks without, so I usually have a turkey dinner just for us in January.) Anywhoooo...
We're doing a typical 1940s Chrismtas dinner this year, hence the ham, I think. (The meal's the basic one as now and it really pleases my dad!)

Deb said...

Oops, Christmas....Wish there was a way to edit!

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Christie, you sat the fence, eh? Turkey AND ham! (I'm going to claim it, even if it's a small ham for your son~!)

Ah, and another Dark Meat afficianado. Exxxxxxxcellent!

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Hey Deb! Since I'm feeling outnumbered, I'm counting you on the ham side. Bwah-ha-ha!

I've heard about putting apples and prunes and cherries in the Bird too. I have a great recipe that uses apple brandy in the stuffing sauce that you actually stuff in the bird. Supposedly keeps things moist. I just like the way it smells. Grins.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Okay, now you have me intrigued, Beth. Night of the Seven Fishes? Tell, tell!

Frankly Deb, if I had inlaws and parents to visit with and eat with and all, I might make standing rib roast, but since we're "it" for Christmas, Ham it is!

Christie Kelley said...

Sorry Jeanne, if it wasn't for my son begging me to make a small ham, there would be no ham on the table. I don't think you count me on your side :)

Christie Kelley said...

Beth, I've never done the seven fishes. Mostly because my Italian husband had a non-Italian mother so she never did it either. And my husband isn't a fish eater. I have to force him to eat it.

p226 said...

Both!

And, I have to say that the one thing that is missing from both Thanksgiving and Christmas meals is... well... bacon.

Because bacon makes everything better. Which, I guess kind of kicks me over towards team Oink.

What am I saying?

If Mrs. P226 read this, she would laugh at the question. She would say, unequivocally, that I am not only a member of team Oink, but a founding father. Though, that would have less to do with food choices and more to do with mindset. I'll explain why.

Example:

Mrs. P226 has a cone of ice cream. She's eating it. I'm staring slack-jawed. She catches me staring luridly at her enjoying her treat.

Her: "Pig!"

Me: "Oink!"

So... yeah. I'm in Team Oink. For more reasons than Christmas ham.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Awww Christie, too bad on the ham. Sigh. :>

Now...tell me about the Fishes!

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

P226!! You're on my side! Yeah! Serious fire power on Team Oink - no matter the reason - is always welcome.

I'm with you on the bacon too. (Not so much on the ice cream thing...I'm sure Beth is grateful for that!)

Got this corn chowder recipe that you put bacon in...if you like corn with your bacon, its great.

p226 said...

I'm with you on the bacon too. (Not so much on the ice cream thing...I'm sure Beth is grateful for that!)..

Hahah, she probably is. But I think most women grossly underestimate the seductive power of licking an ice-cream cone. It brings out the pig in most of us guys.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Hmmmm. I've heard that.

SNORK!!!

Kate Carlisle said...

Fabulous post, you evil twins, you!!

Uh ... prime rib, anyone????

{{Anyone else for beef? Oh, high five, Deb Marlowe!}}

That's right, ladies, we're doing red meat this year for Christmas. Did turkey for Thanksgiving, and I really love ham at Easter, but for Christmas, there's nothing like a beautiful hunk 'o beef, if you know what I mean! ;-)

I'm laughing at PJ coming down firmly on the fence. :-)

Wow, Pink, that corn pudding sounds deadly fabulous!! I might have to try something like that this year.

Gillian, strawberry pretzel salad? Wazzzat??? Recipe, please!!

Beth, we have a wonderful fish soup on Christmas Eve every year. It's a tradition from the Italian side of the family. :-)

Nancy, congrats on snapping up the bird!!! And I hope the quiz goes well.

~Drew said...

What a great question! Being from Canada, we have a longer period between Thanksgiving and Xmas (October to Dec) than those in the States, so my family is turkey all the way for both. For me? White meat.
Leftover turkey sandwiches with slathers of Miracle Whip. *sigh*

Also, being originally from the Maritime provinces of Canada, fish gets a nod, sometimes fresh Atlantic Salmon is a must for Christmas Eve!

But I believe in giving all meat a fair shake, so Ham for Easter, and Roast Beef on New Years day!

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Hey Kate! Wow, another beef vote. Hmmmm. Might have to think about this. Beef and ham. Y'know, I might could enjoy that...

I'm with you too on wanting the Strawberry Pretzel Salad recipe. Since both Gillian and PJ mentioned it...

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Ah, Drew, another Meatatarian. Welcome. :> Heehee. Seriously, I am SUCH a meat lover. About the only thing I'm averse to is veal and that's just for personal associations rather than any moral high ground. :>

Salmon on Christmas eve sounds delish. May have to do that too. Yummy.

I'm with you on the turkey sandwiches though. I'll take Duke's Mayo - the South's favorite - first, but Miracle Whip as a close second. Y'know, turkey is about the only thing on which I put mayo? Weird, eh?

jo robertson said...

Another food topic! Yay, Cassondra and Jeanne.

I'm a turkey girl all the way! But I do love ham. For me it's all about Easter though, yummy, a nice Easter ham. I like my ham with eggs and homemade biscuits, however.

And I'm among the ranks of the white meat, although I do like dark meat on a nice turkey sandwich! Okay, now I'm salivating too!

Becke Davis said...

Happy Birthday, Jeanne! I'm with the oink team - Honeybaked Ham for me!

Nancy said...

Jeanne wrote: Uh-oh. You just let the secret out that you're poppin' a quiz tomorrow! Think any of your students read the blog?

The quiz is on the syllabus, so no worries. And no, I don't think they read the blog. Seein' as how romance writin' don't get no respect, I don't advertise my writing activities at school.

And I don't like marshmallows in my sweet potatoes--or my anything else, really, except s'mores--either.

Nancy said...

Thanks, everyone, for the good wishes and the advice re: the GR. When I left for school this morning, the dog had herded him into the dining room and had him trapped on top of the china cabinet. I don't want him messing with my papers (or anything else) when I'm not around. When I get home, though, he'll be filing, dusting, and taking out the trash.

Minna said...

Oink, oink! Ham. In this country most people eat ham. Turkey is bit of a newcomer. We even have a song about pig and ham:

Juice Leskinen: Sika (Pig)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j-CuPDYB9UM

Nancy said...

PinkPeony, the sweet potato recipe sounds great.

When I was growing up, we had my grandmother's Irish linen tablecloths, and I was always the first person to spill. *sigh*

Now we have a candletower in the center of our table, and I'm on constant guard against wax blobs from dripping or from blown-out candles. The cleaners charged a freakin' fortune to get out the wax last year. I usually put aluminum foil under the tower, and I'm using a bigger piece this year!

Nancy said...

Yes, PJ, it has been a while since the GR last came here. On that occasion, he hatched a dragon egg in the back yard. At least the dragon isn't hanging around waiting to be fed, though Demetrius had expressed some hope of having an air force for Lair protection. The dragon didn't appear very cooperative, though, so it's probably for the best.

The dog was not pleased, as GR control has interrupted her plans for sofa sleeping today.

Nancy said...

Jeanne wrote: I have a great recipe that uses apple brandy in the stuffing sauce that you actually stuff in the bird.

One of my favorite holiday episodes of The West Wing was the one in which the president was resolved to cook the family turkey, a running debate about stuffing in the bird or on the stove top ensued, and at the end of the episode, he was trying to get advice from the Butterball hotline without admitting who he was. I also liked the turkey-pardoning episode.

Nancy said...

Beth, since you mention the seven fishes in conjunction with Italian, I'm assuming this is not a variant of lutefisk?

Nancy said...

p226, you're a hoot! I love the anecdote.

And your love of bacon also puts you on Team Emeril and Team Paula Deen, I think.

They are our dog's favorite Food Network chefs. Because of the pork fat thing.

Cassondra said...

Flchen1 said:

actually, my mom tended to go with prime rib for Christmas. Mmm... And definitely, dark meat all the way!


OOOOOhhhhh.. Steve's mom did prime rib every Christmas. Some day I want to try that, but they can be a little difficult to get and a little expensive when it's NOT the holidays. The price comes down for the season around here,and the availability goes up. I need to try one when it's NOT the holidays, though, so I can learn to do it. I've never cooked a prime rib.

High Five on the dark meat baby!

Cassondra said...

Nancy said:

And we had ham at other times of the year. Turkey, as with Cassondra's family, was ONLY at Thanksgiving and Christmas.


See, I do ham at Easter, and sometimes in the summer as it's easy to fix and everybody requests my ham. I do make a right fine football ham, but I just like turkey for the holidays. Especially for Thanksgiving. I can shift at Christmas, but I'm not admitting that out loud.

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Cassondra said...

lime said:

Erm... for Christmas... neither? :P We don't have a "traditional" food. Also... :X I don't like ham, so if I had to pick a side, I'd go with turkey :D


YAY! Another turkey vote YAY!

Cassondra said...

Jeanne said:

Can't abide marshmallows on sweet potatoes (tho' that comment may cause even MORE debate!) It just makes them tooooo sweet. Grins.


On this, we agree once again, Evil Twin. I like the pecan and brown sugar crusty goodness on top. I don't do marshmallow topping. I can eat it, but meh...

However, I did not traditionally do sweet potatoes at the holidays. That has come more recently since I've been fixing the food here. It was strictly mashed potatoes and gravy when I was growing up.

Cassondra said...

Jane said:

Last year was the first time we had ham for Christmas. My dad did a great job and it was delicious. He didn't use the glaze that came in the package. I think we'll be having turkey this year. I look dark meat, too. I love green bean casserole and stuffing.


OH, I never use the ham glaze. I make my own. Yay, another vote for dark meat!

Cassondra said...

Helen said:

roast pork and chicken with roasted potatoes pumpkin peas beans and cauliflower with gravy then Christmas pudding and custard yummy

Helen, what's Christmas pudding?

Cassondra said...

chelleyreads said:

i'd have to go with ham. i agree with jeanne that turkey's for thanksgiving but ham's for christmas--not that i celebrate christmas but i don't think i can take another week of leftover turkey right so close after thanksgiving


Okay I'm going to admit here that I DO sort of get this wanting to switch out thing. It's just that....Turkey is ONLY available this time of year. Once is just not enough! *sigh*

And I think if my faith or tradition did not celebrate Christmas, I'd have to come up with some other excuse to feast again before the New Year. It's just too yummy to not do so. (grin)

Cassondra said...

Pink Peony said:

I love sweet potatoes. My new spin..I peeled and cut them lengthwise and roasted them, then tossed in a roasted fresh pineapple, sliced up with a tiny bit of brown sugar. I like the colors and it was yummy and very nutritious.


OOOOh, that sounds WONDERFUL! Slurp.

Cassondra said...

PJ said:

turkey/ham combo has become our new Christmas tradition. And really, how can you lose with both gobble and oink? :)


You are so right! My difficulty is oven space. I can cook the ham ahead of time, of course, but the drippings are so much better hot. I do miss turkey gravy when I do the ham, since I always do mashed potatoes with ham also. And with mashed potatoes, ya just want gravy, dontcha?

Cassondra said...

aka Dianna said:

I will put in this one point though, I think you can do way more with ham leftovers than with turkey left overs. As far as ham for Christmas, well you do have to fix pork for New Years so you can use the ham from Christmas.


HI DIANNA! (waving toward West Virginia)

Now to the leftovers: Do you REALLY? See...I know more stuff to do with turkey. Makes sense, I guess, since I grew up eating only turkey for holidays, but with ham, I'm just kind of stuck with...ham. A WHOLE ham.....I get really tired of ham after about the third day. I need to learn some leftover ham tricks I guess.

Cassondra said...

Deb Marlowe said:

I'm going all rebellious this year and having beef!

Sorry girls!

I am looking forward to the noodles that my grandma used to fix with beef broth. Yum!


NOOOOO! YOU MUST PICK A SIIIIIIIIIDE!!!! Okay, just kidding. I want to know more about this beef and noodle thing though. Is this a family tradition?

Cassondra said...

Gillian Layne said:

Favorite side dish? This year it's my daughter's strawberry pretzel salad.

OH, Steve's aunt makes a fabulous pretzel salad. It's more a dessert around here though. SO much rich food!

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Hey Jo! Ahhh, another Turkey gal. Sigh. Well at least you're partial to ham at eiaster. Now what do you do with the eggs? Or do you just mean eggs in general? ('cause I love me some ham and eggs, for breakfast, lunch or dinner. But some people mean recipe wise...like I use the pineapple and cloves)

Cassondra said...

Posh said:

My mother sent home the turkey carcass with me this year, which was awesome. I made turkey pot pie and a great turkey curry. I also had tons of broth and made my favorite barley and lentil soup with it. It was all excellent! I'll look forward to it again next year, too.


See? ALL those yummy things to do. Posh, how, how HOW can once a year be enough?

Ah dang. Lost one to team Oink.

Cassondra said...

Barbara Monajem said:

Gobbler for sure! With stuffing (not dressing, although I do have a great sweet potato dressing recipe), ...and homemade (NOT canned) cranberry sauce.


Woohooo! A gobble vote! I also do not like the normal cornbread dressing. I am a stuffing girl. However I do like the crispy dressing balls. That is my only waver toward the side of dressing.

Cassondra said...

The Romance Dish said:

My hubby would be devastated if we didn't have a gobbler. ;) The side dishes are very similar to our Thanksgiving ones: sweet potato casserole, mashed potatoes, green beans, etc. Can you say carbs? LOL


Thank you, thank you, another vote for Team Gobble. And yes, I can say carbs. Spell it too. OMG.

Hey though...which one of you girls is behind that Romance Dish username? (grin)

Cassondra said...

Jeanne said:

Ohhh, you came over to the Ham Side in your subsequent post, admitting the joys of country ham. Bwah-ha-ha-ha!


Well now, COUNTRY ham is an entirely different thing. The saltiness. Country ham is not something I've ever had at the holidays, but I know lots of people do. I would have no idea how to cook or present country ham for Christmas, and I can't imagine us wanting it for too long--the salt again.

When I cook ham at holidays it's a Field Kentucky Legend football ham. I get a whole one for special occasions because even though they're too big really for us, I think they cook up better than the cut halves. Country ham is a stranger, but Virginia bragged on her ham guy so much it made me want it.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Yeah, Becke! Go Team Oink! (We're the underpigs here, Turkey's winning, so far!)

And thanks for the Birthday wishes. I'm actually old enough to drink legally now. Grins.

Cassondra said...

Deb said:

It's a thing in our family (my dad's mother started it) to also put sliced apples and prunes in the turkey. They really do add flavor. My sister makes an excellent chopped cranberries-apple-orange side dish.

OH, the prunes and apples do sound wonderful. And I love the sound of tha tcranberry fruit side dish.

I have had mince pie only once, a small bite, and did not like it at all, but maybe I didn't have a good one.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Hey Nancy, you do know that if you put the table cloth in the freezer the wax will peel right off, right? Then the cleaners just has to clean the grease spot. Sigh. This happens to me every year.

Oh, and I was always the first to spill too. Grins. Story of my life. I probably still am. Ha!

Forgot about the dragon egg hatching incident. Hmmm. Id think that dragon's been hanging around the battlements, though. SOMETHING's been up there, leaving claw marks and bones.

MsHellion said...

I'm a Team Gobble fan. Mainly because I think the pineapple and cloves are revolting (I have a problem with sweet-and-savory dishes--don't like them combined. I don't even eat sweet and sour chicken! And I'm not keen on cranberry sauce on the turkey, because again with the sweet.)

I prefer the dark meat (white is so dry!); and really it's all about the sides anyway. And the sides served with the turkey are tastier than the ham ones (which incidentally are sweeter dishes: sweet potato casserole, apples, et al.)

Gonna have to try the meatball shaped dressing. That sounds awesome!

And Dad's already bought a large turkey for Christmas. I hope I don't screw this one up by overcooking it like I did the last one!

Oh, and we've done both for Christmas, but dad prefers the turkey too. (And if we do ham, we do COUNTRY ham and we don't put pineapple on it.)

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

*hand to faint forehead* Oh, Ms. Hellion? Revolting? Sigh. Okay, okay, I know some just don't like the savory sweet thing. :>

Now don't get me wrong, I ADORE turkey. And yes, dear Evil Twin, I probably know more things to do with turkey leftovers - salad, savory turkey cranberry ring, sandwiches, soup - but hey, I believe in the freezer. If there's too much and I think it's going to potentially go to waste? Oh, yeah, freeeeezer bound baby!

*POUT* Still pouting over Hellion thinking my pineapples are revolting. Sigh.

Ham though, and yes I do mean the kind you mean, Cassondra, the good solid side of pork, not the salt cured stuff; that I know how to work with too. Ham salad, ham with green beans, ham with Navy beans, ham soup...oh, the list. :>

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Hey Cassondra, have you heard of this strawberry pretzel thing? Whazzup with that? :>

Hey, what's your fav way to cook Turkey-lurkey?

Oh, and I"m with you that I would love to try a prime rib sometime, but I'd better do a couple of dry runs before I serve it to company. Oh, the hardship...

Snork.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Hey Minna! Team Oink all the way! Yeah! Hey ya'll! We've got a whole country on Team Oink now. :> Too bad the vote only counts once. Sigh.

Minna, we're still the Underpigs.

Helen said...

Jeanne Happy Birthday I hope you have a wonderful day.

OK turkey roll comes in foil in a box it is the meat rolled together with seasoning very easy to cook and carve and tastes wonderul.

Cassondra
Christmas pudding is a rich boiled fruit pudding done in a cloth or in a steamer. When I was a young girl my Mum would put money in them but since we changed currency way back in 1969 that doesn't happen anymore. I make one every year they need to cook for 6 hours then on the day you eat them cook for another 2 hours they are really yummy and are often called plum puddings.

Have Fun
Helen

Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

HAPPY HAPPY BDAY, Dear Duchesse!!!

Ham or Turkey? I don't care, as long as somebody else prepares it and cleans up. :-P

As for food traditions, does anyone else eat black-eyed peas on New Years? I've heard this is a tradition in Oklahoma. My gramma INSISTED on having at least a bite of 'em (BLECK! P-THEWEY!) on New Year's Day for good luck in the coming year.

AC
P.S. Good luck with the GR, Nancy. He needs to EARN his holiday cheer.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Thanks, Helen! Its a good day so far, since I get to spend it with YOU all!!! (Oh, and my sis and sons sang me happy birthday this morning.) :>

Wow, that's a lot of cooking for one pud. :>

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Heehee. AC, you crack me up. Well, either is a fence vote, drat it. :>

Ohhhhh, yeah, we do black-eyed peas, collard greens and other stuff on New Years. I used to think it was like the bitter greens for Passover, since I'm not much one for black-eyed peas either. Ha!

Either that, or the bitter/bleechy bite at the first of the year so the rest of the year would be sweet. Hahahah!

I've come to like collards, though only with malt vinegar. I'll eat black-eyed peas, but sparingly, so I make 'em, in my Mom's memory, then they don't get much eaten. :>

Deb said...

Jeanne, the pretzel thing is a jello salad with crushed pretzels and butter mixed and pressed into a pan with a layer of cream cheese and then strawberry jello on top. You can mix in celery and strawberries, etc.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Hmmm, that sounds interesting Deb. A jello salad at the holidays. Hmmmmm. I usually relate those to summer, so I hadn't thought of doing one at Christmas. I should have, I guess since we sometimes do a fruit salad or a Waldorf for color and gee...something besides MEAT! Hahah!

Pretty cool

hrdwrkdmom aka Dianna said...

Oh yeah Cassondra, we can get you on the lefover train for ham.

Put a little in the freezer for New Year's Day. Cook up some cabbage then throw ham and cabbage in a skillet.

Make potato/ham casserole, just lovely for a one dish meal.

Let us not forget a ham omelet or just ham and eggs for breakfast.

Come over to the ham side Cassondra bwahaha

Lady_Graeye said...

I'm a Turkey............lover, no oinkie for me...
Green bean casserole is a fav. I want all the fattening desserts. Pecan pie, pumpkin pie, pumpkin roll-up and squares. And plenty of cool whip!!!!

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Oh, man, lost another one to Team Turkey. Sigh.

But I'm with you on the pumpkin squares, Lady Graeye! :> Pumpkin anything, really. I've not met many things made with pumpking that I DON'T like.

I say that, with the caveat, because my son and I went to Smoothie King and I got a pumpkin smoothie. Let's just say....not so smooth. Not BLEEECH, but not WOOOT! eithere. Not getting THAT again! :>

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

OH, yeah, Dianna! Omelets w/ fresh ham are among the best things in the world...

Breakfast casserole with ham...

MsHellion said...

I'm sorry, Jeanne, I'm sure I'm just uncultured in knowing what good ham is about. Please disregard my maligning of perfectly good pineapple (which I adore fresh). (Incidentally I'm not a fan when they do the ham-pineapple-cherries bit either. Ewww.)

I'm all about the salt-cured ham. *LOL* It's tragic really. And I do like a good pork rind.

Oh, and yes, I've heard of the black eyed pea thing. My friend Pam's family did that. But this is also the family that believed if you did laundry between Dec 25-Jan 1, that someone in your family would die...so they'd do all their laundry by the 24th and wouldn't do it again until the 2nd of January. Not sure what they did when the kids were itty-bitty.

Anyway, they always had to have the black eyed peas--and they'd have to have at least a bite or their luck would be crappy all year. Honestly these were not the luckiest people I knew, so I'm frightened to know what their luck would've been like without the peas.

Fortunately since Dad was in WWII, he got out of the Navy, loathing black eyed peas and SPAM, so for the most part, we missed out on these culinary delights. Plus Dad was never a superstitious fellow--he was a Capricorn and far too practical for that nonsense.

MsHellion said...

How about if I have a Ham-Breakfast Casserole on Christmas morning and then Turkey for Christmas dinner? Would that help, Jeanne?

I mean this is sorta like picking between Edward and Jacob (Jacob! It's Jacob all the way!) and there's no wrong answer. The meat is good on either side.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Ahhh, Hellion, there really is nothing like a good pork rind. Grins.

Maligning notwithstanding, you're also right that there is no losing on this one. Being a meatatarian, I'm really happy with either.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Hellion said: How about if I have a Ham-Breakfast Casserole on Christmas morning and then Turkey for Christmas dinner? Would that help, Jeanne?


Sounds like a great plan! Hahah!

Oh, btw, my dad wouldn't touch black eyed peas either and for exactly the same reason! Ha!

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Hellion, where on earth do you reckon that superstition about the laundry came from? As a mom with two boys, I can't imagine going that long without doing at least one load. I mean, seriously, I'm doing a load every other day. And when they were little? No laundry? *Shudder*

But that's a load-ed topic for another blog! Hahahah!

Suzanne Welsh said...

Just crawling out of bed to see a food fight has taken place in the Lair! Geesh, Ham AND Turkey?

At our house we have neither for Christmas dinner. Yep, neither foul nor pork. Instead we have:

1.grilled marinated flank steak
2.twice baked potatoes with cheese and bacon
3.shrimp cocktails
4.shrimp and crab stuffed mushrooms
5.spinach salad with candied pecans, sliced strawberries and grated white cheddar and a raspberry vinagarette
6.fresh rolls

This year I'm adding a chocolate cheese cake, I think

Gillian Layne said...

Hi ladies--home from work. (Sigh and collapse) Here's the recipe:

STRAWBERRY PRETZEL JELLO SALAD

2 c. crushed pretzel sticks
3/4 c. melted butter
3 tbsp. sugar
8 oz. cream cheese
1 c. sugar
8 oz. Cool Whip
1 (6 oz.) pkg. strawberry banana Jello
2 c. boiling water
2 (10 oz.) pkgs. frozen strawberries, partially thawed

Mix first three ingredients and press in bottom of a 9"x13" pan. Bake at 350 degrees (metal pan) or 325 degrees (glass pan) 8 minutes. Let cool completely. Beat 1 cup sugar and cream cheese. Fold in Cool Whip. Spread over pretzels. Mix Jello and water until dissolved. Add strawberries. Stir into Jello, then set aside for 10 minutes. Pour over cheese mixture. Chill.

My daughter stirs in mini marshmallows with the whipped cream as well. And we've mixed strawberry and cranberry jellos. Just whatever you have on hand. It's good food, especially when you're hungry for leftovers at 11 o'clock at night while watching a movie. :)

PJ said...

Ohhhhh, yeah, we do black-eyed peas, collard greens and other stuff on New Years. I used to think it was like the bitter greens for Passover, since I'm not much one for black-eyed peas either. Ha!

Jeanne, that's because you've never tasted my black-eyed peas! I learned how to make them from my late dh. He was a master! I'm not kidding. Neighbors would line up at our door on New Year's Day for a bowl (or two) of his black-eyed peas. :)

Gillian Layne said...

Suzanne, I would crawl all the way to your house for a twice baked potato right about now....

Gillian Layne said...

PJ, you need to share the recipe as well---my grandmother swore all sorts of evil would befall anyone not eating black eyed peas on New Years day.

MsHellion said...

I'm eating at Suzanne's house. Immediately!!! (You mean I could be having STEAK on Christmas instead of a cheap old bird or months-old ham? Please! Why didn't anyone tell me this?)

Christine Wells said...

Fabo post, ladies! So sorry to be this late to the party. The feast looks absolutely sumptuous! Particularly like the yule log. It is edible, right? Or is that just my piggy eyes deceiving me?

You will be amazed, but I have never had a roast turkey Christmas dinner. Shock! Horror! My father hates eating any kind of poultry so we always had lobster thermidore for our Christmas lunch--very sickly and not really the kind of thing a child likes to eat. Also, our Christmas day is broiling hot, so a hot meal is not really a good idea. Did that stop us? Nooooo. Anyway, ham has always been part of my family's Christmas. My mother would order a big ham for the day and then we'd be eating ham sandwiches and ham and salad from that same haunch for the rest of the summer. So...maybe just once I'd love a Christmas with turkey and all the trimmings. My dh and I would like to take the boys to a cold place for Christmas one year so they can experience Christmas the way it's depicted in all the carols.

Ooh, Nancy, cover the GR's ears! Poor fellow, he won't like listening to us talking turkey!

PJ said...

Gillian, I cook them by taste and texture. I soak dried black-eyed peas in water overnight then get rid of the little peas that float to the top. I then cover the remaining peas in water and chicken stock and add a chopped onion, ham hock, garlic, tomato paste, tomato sauce, hot sauce, salt, pepper and Worcestershire to taste. I start with one can each of the tomato sauce and paste then add more as needed to get the taste and consistency I want. I bring it to a boil then simmer until it cooks down to a thick soup consistency, adjusting the seasoning along the way, if necessary. I serve it with hot corn bread.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Oooooh, Suz!! Sounds fab! Love the sound of that spinach salad too...

Cassondra said...

p226 said:

Example:

Mrs. P226 has a cone of ice cream. She's eating it. I'm staring slack-jawed. She catches me staring luridly at her enjoying her treat.

Her: "Pig!"

Me: "Oink!"

So... yeah. I'm in Team Oink. For more reasons than Christmas ham.


Okay I am totally snorking over this visual, but I would say you are definitely not alone on the ice cream thing and guys' reactions. Snork.

Ah but still...I lost another one for Team Gobble. Dangit.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Gillian, thanks for the recipe!

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Ooooh, PJ! Any chance you'll tell the secret?

Cassondra said...

Nancy said:

The dog was not pleased, as GR control has interrupted her plans for sofa sleeping today

Nancy, give Herself an extra pat and belly rub for us as a thank you for doing guard duty today. If I were there I would try to sneak her a bite of TURKEY. (grin)

Cassondra said...

Drew said:

White meat.
Leftover turkey sandwiches with slathers of Miracle Whip. *sigh*
Ah, dang I lost one to white meat. BUT, if you're going to have white meat, a turkey sandwich with Miracle Whip is the ONLY way to eat it. OH, yeah. On Sourdough. Yummmmm..

LOVE ME SOME TURKEY SAMMICH SLURP.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Christine! Shock! Horror! Lobster thermidore? Wow. :>

Ham's so wonderful though...Not sure I'd want to eat it alllll summer though. Grins.

You've gotta go someplace cold for sure though. Then have that turkey.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

PJ, I just copied your post and printed it out. :> That sounds great!

Cassondra said...

Jeanne said:

Hey Cassondra, have you heard of this strawberry pretzel thing? Whazzup with that? :>



OH, it's amazing. Steve's aunt gave me the recipe but something had to be wrong with it. I tried it twice and failed miserably. It was just muck instead of a nice layered dish. It's phenomenal when done right, but I can't get it right.

Hey, what's your fav way to cook Turkey-lurkey?

I just roast it the old fashioned way, right smack in teh middle of the oven. I do brine it. I soak it in salt water for about 24 hours (longer if it's a big turkey) then pepper it, rub the cavity with butter, stuff it, add some rosemary in the opening for flavor and shove it in the oven. I buy fresh turkeys though, as I think they're better than frozen.

Oh, and I"m with you that I would love to try a prime rib sometime, but I'd better do a couple of dry runs before I serve it to company. Oh, the hardship...

Snork.
Yeah, that's what I'm thinking. FINDING one not during the holiday season is a little difficult though, and honestly you kind of need a crowd because that's a lot of beef, and it's best fresh of course....

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Cassondra said: On Sourdough. Yummmmm...LOVE ME SOME TURKEY SAMMICH SLURP.

Ohhhhh yeah. ON this we can agree. Grins.

Cassondra said...

Hellion said:

But this is also the family that believed if you did laundry between Dec 25-Jan 1, that someone in your family would die...so they'd do all their laundry by the 24th and wouldn't do it again until the 2nd of January. Not sure what they did when the kids were itty-bitty.


Thank God nobody in my family holds to that superstition. If I didnt' do laundry for a week you would not be able to get through my house! I wash EVERY DAY, and still there is laundry. With only TWO of us. We make a lot of laundry for some reason. :0/

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Sounds delish on the Turkey, Cassondra. I usually use the white wine/butter/cheesecloth thing with some apples and stuffing in the bird itself.

I'm with ya' on the fresh bird too. I can't ever seem to get the frozen ones unthawed properly by the right time to put it in the oven. So, I figured, removed the guesswork, buy fresh! Ha!

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Cassondra said: Snork. Yeah, that's what I'm thinking. FINDING one not during the holiday season is a little difficult though, and honestly you kind of need a crowd because that's a lot of beef, and it's best fresh of course....

Yep, the prime rib's not that easy to come by. However, I'm thinking that maybe I'll do a dry run for a winter gathering, see how it goes. Maybe if I go to the butcher ahead of time and ask? That would probably work...

Cassondra said...

PJ said:

Jeanne, that's because you've never tasted my black-eyed peas! I learned how to make them from my late dh. He was a master! I'm not kidding. Neighbors would line up at our door on New Year's Day for a bowl (or two) of his black-eyed peas. :)


OH, can you teach me to do something decent with them? I don't like Black Eyed Peas but Steve does. If I could find a way to fix them so they're good I'd start a New Year's Day tradition.

Cassondra said...

Gillian that recipe looks very similar to the one I have. I think I'll print yours out and try it. Maybe whatever got left out of the one I have will be there in yours and I can finally get it right.

Gillian Layne said...

Cassondra, hope it turns out well for you! And you really can use splenda and no-sugar jello and it will turn out just fine, as well, if anyone in the house is diabetic.

PJ, thank you! My beans are very boring. I just cooked them with the ham bone and chicken stock. Putting tomato sauce and hot sauce in there never would have occurred to me. My husband will love these, I'm sure!

Deb said...

Has anyone else gained 5 pounds today just reading all of these comments?!

Gillian, have you ever made "The Pretzel Thing" with another jello and fruit? I haven't, but wonder if lemon jello and blueberries, etc. might work?

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Deb, all I have to say is that it's a good thing that READING about all this great food isn't as bad as EATING it! Hahahah!

Now I want ham hock cooked beans and twice baked potatoes and all that great stuff. And I want to fly around the country eating Christmas dinner with all the TEAM PORK members. Heehee. With a few stops for Turkey and Steak and, yes, even lobster thermidore. Oh, and fresh Atlantic Salmon. YUM.

Of course, my DH is taking me out to dinner for my birthday tonight so I'll get to choose something slurpy off the menu to ease the food cravings you've all given me! Hahaha! Bet neither turkey nor ham are on the menu though. Pout.

Cassondra said...

Christine said:

So...maybe just once I'd love a Christmas with turkey and all the trimmings. My dh and I would like to take the boys to a cold place for Christmas one year so they can experience Christmas the way it's depicted in all the carols.


OH NO, you've never had a turkey dinner for Christmas? You must plan one year to bring the family to the States in December and we'll fix you a roast turkey traditional Christmas dinner! New York would be a fabulous place to have that, but anywhere in the States would do, as long as it isn't in the tropical parts. Of course, if you want snow, you'd need to be further to the North. New YOrk, Denver perhaps? (a skiing holiday would be a good excuse don't you think?)

Cassondra said...

Jeanne said:

Of course, my DH is taking me out to dinner for my birthday tonight so I'll get to choose something slurpy off the menu to ease the food cravings you've all given me! Hahaha!

Happy Birthday, Duchesse! Have a great dinner out and tell us what you had when you get back!

PJ, thanks for the ideas on teh Black Eyed peas. How many peas to how many cans of the paste and sauce? Do you drain the peas first? Yes, never having done it before I need remedial help. (hangs head in shame)

PJ said...

Hey though...which one of you girls is behind that Romance Dish username? (grin)

Umm, I think that might have been Gannon. She has other things on her mind today.

PJ said...

Cassondra, I use the bags of dried black-eyed peas. After I soak them overnight in water, I rinse them, drain that water and start from scratch with new water and chicken broth.

Cassondra, if you use a 16 ounce bag of peas (that's the small size), I'd start with an 8 oz. can of sauce and a 6 oz. can of paste then add to that a little bit at a time, along with the seasonings, until you get the taste you want.

PJ said...

Oops! Didn't meant to "Cassondra" you twice. *g* That's what happens when I try to type with dogs on both sides of my chair vying for my attention. lol

Suzanne Welsh said...

Why yes Ms. Hellion, steak is a very nice option. Here's a recipe I'm making this week for a family dinner:

SEARED BEEF TENDERLOIN MEDALLIONS IN MUSHROOM SAUCE

2-3 Tenderloin Steaks (1 inch thick)
trim fat and cut into medallion sized pieces
salt and pepper
2 Tbs. Butter
½ small onion diced
1 pkg. baby Portabello mushrooms sliced
¼ cup good wine
2 tsp. A-1 sauce
1 small box beef stock
1 pkg. Brown gravy mix

Melt ½ of butter in medium sized pan .
Salt and pepper meat.
Sear medallions on both sides until medium rare.
Remove from pan to platter and cover with foil.
Add remaining butter, onions and mushrooms to pan. Sauté until soft.
Add wine and cook 2-3 minutes.
Add A-1 sauce and broth. Cook 2-3 minutes.
Stir in brown gravy mix, whisk until dissolved.
Return meat to pan and simmer 10 minutes, turning at least once half way through.

I serve with mashed potatoes and some steamed asparagus.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Hey Cassondra, no hanging head in shame, you beat me to the ask. Grins. So, PJ, how much Worchestershire?

Suz, that sounds DIVINE!!!

Cassondra said...

Dianna can I have your ham and potato casserole recipe?

And will anybody give up a recipe for ham salad?

Also, Steve's aunt is reputed to make a certain renowned turkey salad, which I have never had, and cannot get the recipe. If any of y'all have recipes for that, I'd love those too. Yes, I am a recipe slut.

Cassondra said...

PJ said:

if you use a 16 ounce bag of peas (that's the small size), I'd start with an 8 oz. can of sauce and a 6 oz. can of paste then add to that a little bit at a time, along with the seasonings, until you get the taste you want.


THANKS!

What taste does it have for you? Can you compare it to anything? I kind of don't know what I'm shooting for since I haven't had yours, dangit, and I want that stand-in-line-for-it taste. (grin)

Ah well, I can experiment. I'm making experimental beef stew tonight, actually.

Cassondra said...

Suz said:

SEARED BEEF TENDERLOIN MEDALLIONS IN MUSHROOM SAUCE


OMGOSH Suz! I made tenderloin this weekend, and I still have two small ones in the fridge. I'll try this at the end of the week! Hooray!

Joan said...

Dashing in very quickly before I make my snack and watch the finale of Biggest Loser (Ya gotta have snacks :D)

I'm a fencer too. Turkey for Thanksgiving. I only like white meat on turkey but favor dark on chicken.

As to ham that is Christmas all the way. I prefer Honey Baked Ham. Then we have potato salad which I eat on top of Ruffles potato chips. I can put away a ton of that....which is why I watch the Biggest Loser :D

And on the ice cream thing. We had this nurse years ago who would get a soft serve cone and sit and LEISURELY lick that cone. I was VERY young then and wondered why all the docs looked like PIGS in white coats.....

Tawny said...

ROFL - I'm going to have to bow out of the meat-battle today. As a vegetarian, I'm all about the potatoes!!!

I have, Jeanne, made a Yule log though :-) Yummmy delicious. I'll probably be making another one this year.

Kate Carlisle said...

Y'all are making me hungry and I've got a Weight Watchers meeting tomorrow! Well, that'll teach me to sign up during the holidays...

Gillian, the strawberry pretzel salad looks fun! I'll try it.

PJ, the black-eyed peas sound fabulous! I've never made them but I'm going to have to give it a shot.

Suz, you're killing me!!!!!

Cassondra said...

Okay y'all, Tawny especially...I need a recipe for a Yule log. Yes, I do.

Tawny said...

Cassondra, I just make a jelly roll style cake -chocolate usually with a chocolate cream filling, and roll it up, then frost it in chocolate buttercream decorate to look like a log :-)

Joan said...

I need a recipe for a Yule log. Yes, I do.

Swiss Colony :D

Oh, and meant to say Nancy, those porcines aren't TOO smart or they wouldn't end up in my Jimmy Deans
;-)

Cassondra said...

Tawny said:

Cassondra, I just make a jelly roll style cake -chocolate usually with a chocolate cream filling, and roll it up, then frost it in chocolate buttercream decorate to look like a log :-)



Hmmm. That does not sound too hard. Whether I can make it look like a log is another thing entirely. Chocolate buttercream. Yummmm....

Cassondra said...

Joanie said:

Then we have potato salad which I eat on top of Ruffles potato chips. I can put away a ton of that....

REALLY?!!!!

I never heard of this. Wavy ruffles or regular? Potato salad on top of potato chips. As I think about it, I bet it's yummy. The creamy and the crunchy juxtaposed.....

Pat Cochran said...

Hi, Ladies,

This is really weird, I'm working on the menu for Christmas Day, then I decide to stop for a bit and check my favorite blog sites. And here you are, talking about holiday foods. My menu thus far, includes oven roasted turkey, baked ham and my #1 son's special pot roast. Also my favorites : scalloped potatoes. As you can see,we plan to cover all the bases.
The rest of the siblings will add
their favorite side dishes to the
menu.

Pat Cochran

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Pat that sounds delish!

Joanie T, potato chips WITH potato salad? Did I read that right?

Gotta check in and see who won Biggest Loser.

I had steak and a baked potato tonight...the perfect birthday meal...yum.

Tawny, one word: SNORK!!!

Cassondra, Tawny's right, the yule log thing is supposed to be easy - jelly roll and all that - but it's the icing bit and the marzipan or meringue mushrooms that do it and I've not managed those to my own satisfation yet. :>

Joan said...

Yup, you "heard" right. Potato salad ON potato chips.

Just plain 'ole Ruffles....I don't get the difference between them and WAVY...

And here is Joanie T's sure fire chocolate fudge icing.

1 lb. powdered sugar, sifted
1 stick butter softened
3/4 cup cocoa
2 tsp. vanilla
1/2 cup plus of evaporated milk.

Sift together the powdered sugar and cocoa. Add to butter and beat slowly. Add the evaporated milk. Beat until spreading consistency adding extra milk by the tablespoon full until achieved. Blend in vanilla

I'm telling you it is the BEST

Suzanne Welsh said...

Kate said:Suz, you're killing me!!!!!...What are friends for dear?