I have to confess, I still have to make Cheesy Potato Casserole for, get this, BREAKFAST tomorrow morning. (Okay, we’re a little odd when it comes to favorite holiday foods. Some things are essential to the holiday menu but not always in their traditional role!) I’m still frantically rolling out Banket Bites and stirring up No-Fail Fudge. I have about a dozen presents to wrap and I’m brainstorming on a few last minute gifts from the kitchen that I can do on the run.
Tomorrow is our big Mexican Feast with Chile Verde, Carnitas, and Fajitas. I thought I had all my grocery shopping done but realized that I forgot the tortillas. I wish I had time to make homemade tortillas but that is NOT on my list! I’m reminded, though, to think through all the little odds and ends that turn out to be important ingredients in our holiday meal strategy. It’s easy to forget things like foil, whipping cream, fresh limes, sour cream, and the like if I don’t make extensive lists. And right now, my brain is buzzing around so fast that I need an actual list…a mental list isn’t going to cut it!
Tonight we’re eating Dave’s amazing Seafood Chowder. We’re amping it up a bit with the addition of some fresh clams, scallops, and crab meat. In fact, we’re getting pretty close to one of our other traditional Christmas Eve favorites, Christmas Eve Cioppino. Still, the base of the chowder is potatoes and that is very different from Cioppino. (If you’re interested in Cioppino, we have another great recipe in addition to the one I just mentioned: Traci’s Crab Cioppino.)
In the midst of all the food-making, banket-baking, present-wrapping, chowder-simmering, and housecleaning, we have Handel’s Messiah weaving musical memories throughout the house. I’ll start the Spiced Cider warming soon so that it’s ready when family arrives. I LOVE feeding the people that I love good food!
And over everything in my home arches the Christmas story–a tiny baby born in Bethlehem to a young girl, tucked into a manger, worshipped by shepherds, announced by the stars: Jesus. THAT is Who we are really celebrating tonight and tomorrow. Merry Christmas all!