Sunday, December 23, 2007

Ho Ho Ho, Y'All...

...Or how nice Southern Jews celebrate Christmas.

My friend Nancy's mom and dad, Beverly & Vince, are in town for a few days, and I wanted to do something to mark their visit. You see, Beverly and Vince host us every year for Passover at their home in Toledo. They are our family now -- we couldn't possibly love them more if we were related by blood.

So I asked Nancy if, while here parents were here, I could whip up a little dinner, just for the family, so that I could repay in some small measure their kindness and hospitality. Since both Beverly and Vince are from the South, I decided to put put together a menu of Southern comfort food.

To start, I made a couple hundred cheese straws -- lovely crisp cheesy crackers heavily spiced with cayenne which go well with every sort of cocktail imaginable. (And pretty damn well with a glass of milk -- Norbert's favorite beverage!)

A salad dressed with a garlic vinaigrette and blue cheese will follow, then chicken and dumplings -- the rolled dumplings, not the drop biscuit kind. (Yankees drop biscuits on top -- Southerners roll out their dumplings.) I like my chicken and dumplings with carrots and peas cooked in the broth, and with lots of mushrooms!

Then comes the most important part of the meal:

Three layers of coconut scented cake, filled with lemon curd, then frosted with 7-Minute-Icing and topped with coconut. Yummmm!

And I don't want you to get the wrong idea. On Christmas Day we will do what Jews across the country are sure to do. We will see a movie and go out for Chinese.

For Christians, Happy Holidays! My Muslim readers, I hope and pray your Eid was filled with peace. And for my Jewish readers, Try the mooshoo. Yum.


Leslie said...

My raised conservative husband obviously has a genetic defect -- he doesn't care for Chinese! I'll have to cook something for dinner on Tuesday - nothing elaborate but still I'll be cooking :(

SarahA said...

Any recommendations for Chinese? We Baha'is go to movies, too, but last year we couldn't find a restaurant open. I suppose we could wander around Chinatown tomorrow...

Aidan said...

I love, love, love dim sum. I prefer Furama, which has restarants on the north side (Argyle & Broadway) and in Chinatown (south end of Wentworth) and really puts on a nice spread. (Now I'm going to be craving those wonderful curried squid all day -- thanks.)

My favorite place for snacks has closed -- it was this little, tiny, easy to miss bar-b-que place that sold bar-b-qued chicken livers. They were sweet and smoky and tender. I would buy a half a pound and then walk around, looking in windows and nibble on my livers.

anne marie in philly said...

ummm, coconut cake (slobbers like homer simpson)!

may you and your family have a quiet day and happy happy thoughts of the season for 2008.

Cherice said...

As I will tell my Jewish neighbors tomorrow happy Tuesday (I don't think anyone has told them they're supposed to go out for Chinese...usually they're home all day Christmas day. Come to think of it I think our Chinese restaurant is closed on Christmas day).

Aidan, I hope you and your family have a lovely Tuesday and I hope your Chinese restaurant is better than the one we have here. I'd love it if you could send me a slice of that cake, it looks devine.

Cinders said...

Now I never though of going out for a Chinese. Though I dont know if any are open in England. You'd be surprised at the number of our friends making 'festive' dinners. Not us.
have a good 'winterval'!!!

Anonymous said...

Oh and what a shock to this German born Yankee when she moved south and asked for chicken and dumplings to find out they were not the dropped kind LOL. Boy your meal sure sounds delicious and that cake OMG that cake. Too bad they haven't invented a way to share through computer screens.

Happy holidays to you and yours!!!