Merry Christmas everyone. I hope you are all enjoying time with those you love, eating good food and having some special down time together. I love this time of year and I also enjoy cooking for the holidays. Have you decided what you are cooking for Christmas Dinner? I have collected a few of my favorite recipes to share with you in case you need some inspiration. If you are tired of turkey, you could substitute prime rib, steak, or ham.
Roasted Turkey with Herbs and White Wine Pan Gravy
Slow Cooker Mashed Potatoes
Apple, Cranberry Walnut Salad with Feta
Cranberry /Pear Salsa
Dessert: Cherry Pie with Whipped Cream
ROASTED TURKEY WITH HERBS AND BUTTER WITH WHITE WINE PAN GRAVY
Recipe and Photo from: https://www.halfbakedharvest.com/herb-and-butter-roasted-turkey-with-white-wine-pan-gravy/
- 1 (14-16) pound turkey, giblets + neck removed, patted dry
- 2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, softened
- 2 tablespoons fresh sage, plus more for stuffing the bird
- 2 tablespoons fresh thyme, plus more for stuffing the bird
- 3 tablespoons fresh parsley
- zest of 1 lemon
- 3 teaspoons salt
- 1 1/2 teaspoons pepper
- 1 piece large of double lined cheesecloth
- 2 lemons, halved
- 1 garlic head, tips sliced off
- 1 onion, halved
- 7-8 cups low sodium chicken or turkey broth
White Wine Pan Gravy
- 1 cup white wine, divided
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 6 tablespoons flour
- drippings from the turkey
- 2-3 cups chicken or turkey broth, as needed
- 1 tablespoon fresh sage
- salt + pepper, to taste
- Remove the turkey from the fridge one hour before roasting. Remove the giblets + neck and rinse the bird off, pat dry and allow to come to room temperature.
- To make the compound butter, finely chop the sage, thyme + parsley and add to a bowl with the butter. Add the lemon zest, salt, and pepper, mix well to combine, making sure the butter is smooth and the herbs evenly mixed throughout (you can also add everything to a food processor and mix it that way).
- Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Position a rack in the lower third of the oven.
- Place the turkey in a large roasting pan.
- Season the cavity of the turkey with salt and pepper and fill the cavity with the, lemons, garlic, and onion. Gently lift the skin of the turkey by using your fingers and going in between the skin and body of the bird. Rub half of the compound butter under the skin of the bird, spreading some of the butter on top of the skin as well. Take the remaining butter and melt it over the low heat on the stove or in the microwave. Dampen your cheesecloth with warm water and squeeze dry. Submerge the cheesecloth in the melted butter, making sure all the cheese cloth has soaked up the butter. Lay the cheesecloth over the bird, covering most of the bird. Drizzle any remaining butter over the turkey.
- Pour about 4 cups of chicken broth into the bottom of the roasting plan. Place the roasting pan in the oven and roast for 45 minutes at 450 degrees F. After 45 minutes reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees F. and continue cooking for another 2 hours (until the turkey registers 160 F. on a meat thermometer), adding 1-2 cup of broth half way through roasting. I like to baste the turkey with the drippings 2-3 times throughout cooking and when doing so rotate the roasting pan.
- Remove the turkey from the oven and remove the cheesecloth, transfer the turkey to a baking sheet, tent loosely with foil and let rest 20-30 minutes before slicing.
- To make the gravy, strain the liquid from the roasting pan, skimming off most of the fat. I like to pour the broth into a 4 cup measuring cup and then place in the freezer for 10 minutes. This helps the fat rise to the top of the surface. Once you have skimmed the fat, add enough broth to equal about 4-5 cups total of drippings/broth.
- Place the roasting pan over two burners and add a slash of wine (about 1/2 cup) to deglaze the pan. You want to scrape up all those brown bits on the bottom of the pan. Once the pan is thoroughly deglazed, add the butter, and once melted, add the flour whisking to combine. Cook stirring constantly, until the mixture is golden, around 5 minutes.
- Increase heat to medium high and add the remaining 1/2 cup of white wine, whisking as you go to let the wine reduce down. Slowly add reserved broth, stirring constantly, until the mixture is smooth. Stir in the sage and cook, continuing to stir, until the gravy has thickened to your desired thickness, around 8 to 10 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve warm with the turkey.
SLOW COOKER MASHED POTATOES
Recipe and Photo from: https://carlsbadcravings.com/slow-cooker-mashed-potatoes-recipe/#
- 3 pounds red potatoes sliced into 1-1/2” slices, skin on
- ¼ cup unsalted butter, cubed
- 3 tablespoons prepared pesto
- ¼ cup water
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- ¼ teaspoon paprika
- ¼ teaspoon onion powder
- ½ cup milk, more or less as desired
- ½ cup sour cream
- Spray slow cooker with nonstick cooking spray.
- Add potatoes, butter, pesto, water, garlic and spices to slow cooker. Cook on HIGH for 3-4 hours, or on LOW for 7-8 hours OR until potatoes are very tender.*
- Add milk and sour cream, and mash with a potato masher or beat with an electric mixer (recommended) just until blended – don’t overwork potatoes or they might become gummy.
- Add additional milk as needed to reach desired consistency. Taste and season with additional salt and pepper if desired.
*Potatoes will require longer cooking time if you have an older slower cooker.
*Cooking time will vary depending on potato size.
APPLE CRANBERRY WALNUT SALAD
Recipe and Photo from: https://www.lecremedelacrumb.com/apple-cranberry-walnut-salad
- 6 cups salad (I used a combination of arugula and baby spinach, any spring green mix will do)
- 1 red apple
- 1 green apple
- 1 cup walnuts, roughly chopped (such as Diamond of California)
- ⅓ cup crumbled feta cheese
- ⅓ cup dried cranberries
- 1 cup apple juice
- 4 tablespoons apple cider vinegar (or white vinegar in a pinch)
- 2 tablespoons honey
- scant ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- ¼ cup oil
- Core and chop apples (thin slices or 1 inch chunks).
- Toss lettuce, apples, walnuts, feta, and cranberries together in a large bowl.
- Whisk together all dressing ingredients.
- Toss with salad immediately before serving. Enjoy!
Recipe and Photo by: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/food-network-kitchen/steamed-asparagus-recipe2-1916138
- 1 pound medium asparagus, stalks trimmed and peeled
- 1 to 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
- 1 lemon, cut into wedges
- Trim the dry ends off the asparagus. If the spears are thick, peel them lightly with a vegetable peeler.
- Bring about an inch of water to boil, and put a metal steamer inside the pot.
- Lay the asparagus in the steamer, cover, and steam until crisp-tender, about 4 to 5 minutes.
- Transfer asparagus to a heated serving dish, drizzle with the olive oil, and season with salt and pepper, to taste.
- Garnish with lemon and serve immediately.
Cranberry Pear Salsa
Recipe and Photo from: http://www.finecooking.com/recipe/cranberry-pear-salsa
- 12 oz. fresh cranberries, picked over and stemmed
- 1-1/2 cups peeled, cored, and coarsely chopped pears (about 2 medium or 1 large)
- 1/2 cup diced green bell pepper
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1 fresh serrano chile, cored, seeded, and minced
- 1 tsp. finely grated orange zest
- 2 Tbs. fresh orange juice
- 1 Tbs. canola oil
- Pinch salt
- Coarsely chop the cranberries (or pulse them in a food processor until coarsely chopped).
- Combine all the ingredients in a large bowl and toss gently.
- Taste and adjust the seasonings.
Easy Crumble Cherry Pie
Recipe and Photo by: https://singingthroughtherain.net/2013/12/easy-crumble-cherry-pie.html
- 1 Frozen Pie crust (take out when preheating the oven)
- 2/3 cup flour
- 1 tsp almond flavoring
- ½ cup butter (cold cut into chunks)
- 2/3 cup of sugar
- 1 21 oz can of Cherry Pie filling
- Pre-heat oven to 375. Stab the bottom of your pie crust with a fork about 5 random spots. After the frozen pie crust has sat out about 15 minutes dump the pie filling in to the crust.
- Put crumb topping in a bowl and use a pastry blender or fork until the butter is crumbled and everything is mixed. Sprinkle the crumb topping over the top of the cherry filling.
- Bake 30 to 40 minutes longer or until topping is golden brown and filling is bubbly around edges. If you want you can cover the edge of the crust with strips of foil to prevent excessive browning for the first 15 minutes of baking. You’re looking for a golden brown crumble topping. Let cool 30 minutes and enjoy!
I hope you find some of these recipes on your Christmas Dinner tables this year. Have a wonderful evening!
Be the Best YOU in 2018!
Join me on my 2018 journey to lose 60 pounds by eating healthy and walking daily. I will provide you with my free tools to make it super easy. I will also have recipes on my blog! We can encourage each other along the way. Are you ready? Let's DO THIS.