Sunday, December 30, 2012

Christmas Eve Dinner 2012

For the last several years, we have been out of the country during Christmas.  But since we stayed home this year, I was able to personally prepare our Christmas eve dinner.  

I remember a few years back we had a Christmas eve buffet dinner in Hong Kong, I didn't fully appreciate the food spread because of the limited time available.  Add to the fact the two younger ones were so much younger then, and needed more assistance.  Eating at home is so much more relaxed.  It is made more enjoyable if, like me, you also enjoy cooking and trying new recipes.

Since I decided that ALL the food are going to be home-made, I started prep work in the kitchen mid-afternoon to make sure that I won't be hurried.  I wanted to enjoy the process since I was going to make it for my family for Christmas Eve. after all.  

Pardon the photos since they were all just taken with my daughter's iPhone cam.  As you know, my hands are tied in the kitchen.... So anyway, here's what we had for our simple celebration:

Caprese Salad on Skewers.  Grape tomatoes, basil leaves, truffle noir cheese, drizzled with extra virgin olive oil, generous sprinkle of freshly ground peppercorns and sea salt.  This is a family staple, even on ordinary days as this is so easy to prepare, and the flavors just pop in one mouthful.

 

Baked Brie with Truffle Mushroom, topped with Roasted Honey Almonds. You cannot see it here but underneath those roasted almonds is a layer of crusted brown sugar.  This is hands down the favorite dish of the night.  So easy to prepare, but it made my family think the world of me.
Baked pears with caramelized balamic vinegar topped with crumbled stilton cheese and pistachios.  The kids usually refuse to eat any kind of blue cheese, but somehow this one was tolerated somewhat... or they were just being cooperative and grateful.

 

Roasted chicken with garlic and lemons.  This roasted chicken is another family favorite, and on the few occasions that there are leftovers, I find that they taste even better the next day.

And I just love the roasted garlic... I simply press at the ends and all the garlicky goodness slides out easily.  Mash and eat with the chicken.
 

Grilled rib-eye steak on a bed of arugula and strawberry salad, drizzled with balsamic vinegar dressing.  My carniverous family could not let a meal pass us without red meat, so I grilled a few slabs of rib-eye and placed them on top of the saladHate to admit, but I prepared the salad to find a way to limit their consumption of red meat.
 

Linguinie with mushrooms and garilic with truffle cream sauce.  This is a special request from C, and I made sure to make the sauce generously cover the pasta as everyone loves the cream sauce... no fighting over food because it's Christmas Eve.:)

You might notice that I was very generous with using truffle oil, using it even in several dishes; and that is because I bought it at Bacchus Epicerie over at PowerPlant Mall the day before Christmas for 20% off.  I bought a small bottle of black truffle oil (about 25ml if I am not mistaken) from them about six months ago for P1,200.  And for this recent purchase, I just paid less than a thousand only.  

I did not prepare desserts anymore, but I want to share with you that the red velvet cake from Karen's Kitchen is such a stand out that it will soon be a staple on every celebration!  It's so good, so moist and just the right amount of sweet.  

That's about it.  Leaving you all as I celebrate the New Year with a staycation.  See you all 2013!



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