Wednesday, December 30, 2009

A Cozy Christmas

Our Christmas visit to New York and my Mom's cozy house was full of delicious foods! We arrived on Christmas Eve Day and set to feasting. Scenting the kitchen was a beautiful rosemary plant in bloom with delicate pale-blue flowers:

The rosemary shares kitchen counterspace with this little rabbit, found at the New York Botanical Garden gift shop, a mecca for lovely flora and fauna related books and gifts:
 Mom's roast chicken had an amazing dried cherry and yellow onion stuffing that we just devoured:

On Christmas morning, a smoked salmon platter:

And panettone! This yummy version was full of subtle orange rind flavor and was meltingly soft:
My stuffed mushrooms have become something of a holiday tradition. The recipe involves the made-for-each-other combo of mushrooms, garlic, olive oil and white wine.
Stuffed Mushrooms with Garlic

large and very fresh stuffing mushrooms-3 per person, approximately
one large mushroom, diced, for every 6 you are serving
garlic cloves, peeled and minced medium fine
olive oil, butter
fresh parsley and thyme
white wine or dry sherry
a plain bread slice, torn into small pieces

Preheat oven to 375.
Assemble as many large stuffing mushrooms as your company will devour--3 or so per person is a safe bet. Wipe mushrooms clean and twist out the stems, set aside. Arrange cleaned and dried mushroom caps in a baking dish, coating them and the baking dish with a light glaze of olive oil. Lightly salt mushrooms on both sides, and place in oven and bake for 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, prepare stuffing:
Chop, medium-fine, the mushroom stems and one whole mushroom for every six mushrooms to be stuffed.
Saute 5 cloves of minced garlic in butter and olive oil until nicely soft and lightly golden; add mushroom stems and chopped whole mushrooms, cook over medium heat and season with salt and pepper.

Add minced flat leaf parsley to mushroom-garlic mix, then a splash of white wine (or dry sherry) and some fresh thyme leaves if desired.When wine has cooked off and your kitchen smells like Provence, toss in some small pieces of white bread, and cook with stuffing mixture for another 5 minutes.

Check seasoning, remove mushrooms from oven and carefully fill the caps. Pour some dry white wine or sherry into the baking dish, a little over the mushrooms, and lightly salt once more. Bake another 10 minutes or so, or until golden and tender, and enjoy!

Also part of Christmas dinner was Mom's lovely lasange, this year a ricotta-mozerella-tomato basil version. Here it is about to go in the oven:

Salmon with horseradish dill sauce:

Here's Tiki. I think he had as cozy a Christmas as the rest of us...

Wishing everyone a joyful and peaceful New Year!


babykins said...

Gorgeous feasts!
I love rosemary and roast chicken and panettone. Thank you for sharing the appetizing nice recipe of you and your mom. Happy holiday!

bentobird said...

Hi babykins!
Happy New Year! Thank you for your visit and lovely comments! I look forward to reading your great blog in 2010.
Best wishes!