For the second year in a row, I shared kitchen duties with my mom for our family’s Christmas Eve dinner. My mom handled all the fish dishes (I’ve written about our Italian fish tradition previously here) and I was in charge of the rest, which included a variety of nutrient-dense, fancifully flavored, plant-based recipes. This year’s menu, like last year’s, combined old-world tradition with some new fusion fare:
- Shrimp Cocktail (à la Costco)
- Chard & White Bean Soup (I substituted sweet potatoes for new potatoes)
- Wilted Greens Salad (I used plain, ol’ mesclun instead of mustard greens, but added Dijon to the dressing as a nod; I also threw in some chopped walnuts to add texture and offset the sweetness of the dressing)
- Shrimp Scampi; Calamari en Brodo; Broiled Cod; and Linguine with King Crab legs (all recipes in Mom’s head)
- Braised Kale and Carrot Stew (loosely inspired by this recipe)
- Citrus Pound Cake w/Warm Citrus Salad (from the Dec ’14 issue of The Oprah Magazine)
- Winter Warmer Cocktail (I don’t drink alcohol, but got everyone else nice and drunk on this)
I fare best when I eat vegetarian, but I don’t feel the need to make a show of it; I just like providing solidly healthful foods for people I love, especially when I know some of the day will include indulgences and sweets. Plus, it ensures that I’ll be getting my own fill of fruits and veggies…a true win-win.
What kind of foods do you eat and traditions do you follow for the holidays? Do you like to cook or share the cooking responsibilities with anyone in your family during special occasions? Feel free to post your comments below. I look forward to reading them!