Christmas Eve Preparations

Sweet & Sour Stuffed Cabbage, Applesauce, Apple Crisp

We throw a dinner party on Christmas Eve with extended family and friends and this year it looks like we’ll be about 20. The Christmas holiday is swiftly approaching and I’m making any items this week that can be frozen. Here’s the menu for this year:

CHRISTMAS EVE DINNER – 2015

Hors d’oeuvres

Spanikopita
Mini Potato Latkes with Sour Cream & Chives or Applesauce
Mini Sweet & Sour Stuffed Cabbage
Pigs in a Blanket with Mustard
Crudite & Dip

Cocktails

Buffet Dinner

Garlic-Herb Rubbed Roast Pork Loin with Creamy Mustard-Herb Sauce
Apple Cider Chicken
Macaroni & Cheese
Mashed Sweet Potatoes
Roasted Rainbow Carrots with Thyme
Steamed Broccoli & Cauliflower with Lemon-Shallot Butter
Christmas Salad with Pomegranate Vinaigrette
(Kale, Beets, Apples, Pistachios, Blue Cheese)
Apple Sauce
Challah

Wine

Desserts

Vanilla Bean Ice Cream
Apple Crisp
Ricotta Cheesecake
David’s Bars
Chocolate-Covered Strawberries
Fruit Bowl

Coffee & Tea

Today I’m making the apple crisp, which I’ll freeze uncooked. This can easily be taken from the freezer to a preheated oven and baked for an extra 30 minutes (1 1/2 hours total). The remaining apples (I bought three bags of apples, Granny Smith, Rome and MacIntosh) are for applesauce. I used a large stockpot (think lobster pot size), which I filled three-quarter full of chunked apples. I didn’t peel or core the apples, I used a food mill to puree them, and then added a good sprinkle of cinnamon. I got nine pint jars and a bowl for dinner!

I’m also making the Sweet and Sour Stuffed Cabbage today. These, too will be frozen uncooked and go directly from the freezer to the oven and cook for about two hours.

Sweet & Sour Stuffed Cabbage, Applesauce, Apple Crisp

Cut the blanched cabbage leaves into quarters (triangle shaped). Place about two teaspoons of the meat mixture at the top, bring the outer edges over and roll up.

Sweet & Sour Stuffed Cabbage, Applesauce, Apple Crisp

Throughout the rest of the week, I’ll make Challah and Potato Latkes.

I need to order some rentals: linens, chairs and all-purpose glasses. There are a few items I’ll get readymade from Stew Leonards: fruit bowl, pigs in a blanket and spanakopita. The chocolate-covered strawberries I’ll order from Edible Arrangements. With these details out of the way, I can focus on decorating the house and wrapping presents next week.

My To Do List is done. Anything already accomplished I highlight in yellow. I’d be lost with the list – it keeps me on track and from becoming overwhelmed. I’ll also print out the menu and pencil in cooking times on Christmas Eve so I know how to coordinate the final dishes.

Here’s the To Do and Grocery Lists:

To Do List

Centerpieces

Candles
Flowers

Rentals

Chairs (6)
Linens (cloths, napkins, runners) 3 tables + buffet
2 Dozen All-purpose glasses

Make Ahead and Freeze

Latkes
Stuffed Cabbage
Challah
Applesauce
Apple Crisp

Christmas Week

Tuesday

Groceries

Wash herbs and greens
Roast beets
Prep Ice Cream Base

Wednesday

Bring up Xmas china
Set Tables
Tablecloths/napkins
Centerpieces/candles
Knives/forks
Glasses
Churn Ice Cream
Lemon Shallot Butter Sauce
Thyme Butter Sauce

Thursday

Garlic Herb Rub
Brown Pork Roast
Rub Pork
Bake sweet potatoes
Parboil broccoli and cauliflower
Creamy Herb Mustard Sauce
Ricotta Cheesecake
David’s Bars

Friday

Thaw Challah
Prep Mac n Cheese
Prep Christmas Salad
Pomegranate vinaigrette

Cook

Apple Cider Braised Chicken
Stuffed cabbage
Spanakopita
Latkes
Mac n Cheese
Broc/cauli
Sweet pots
Warm Applesauce

Setups:

Cocktail Napkins/Small Plates/Forks
Dessert Plates/forks
Coffee/Tea/Spoons – sugar/cream

Serving Platters/Bowls:

Cocktails:
Spanikopita/Pigs in a Blanket/Mustard
Latkes/Sour cream/Chives/Applesauce
Stuffed Cabbage
Crudite/Dip

Dinner:
Pork/Sauce/Meat Fork
Chicken/Meat Fork/Ladle
Sweet Potatoes Bowl/ Serving Spoon
Carrot Platter/Tongs
Veggie Bowl/Serving Spoon
Bread basket/butter dish/butter knife
Salad Tongs/ Serving Spoons (sweet pots, mac n cheese, applesauce)

Grocery List

Order in Advance

Stew Leonards

Fruit Bowl
Crudite Platter

 

Edible Arrangements

Chocolate-Covered Strawberries

Meat

3 pounds ground beef
boneless pork roasts
chicken

Dairy

Heavy Cream
Half & Half
Eggs
Blue Cheese
2 # ricotta cheese
12 ounces extra sharp Cheddar cheese

Fruit

Apples (applesauce, apple crisp, plus one for stuffed cabbage)
Lemons
Orange

Vegetables

8-9# Russett Potatoes
Onions
3 Heads of garlic
Shallots
2 large green cabbages
2 pounds rainbow carrots
Broccoli
Cauliflower
Kale
Beets

Herbs

Chives
Thyme
Rosemary
Sage
Parsley

Staples

2 packages yeast
Kosher salt
APF (7 cups)
Dried cranberries (1 cup)
Pomegranate vinegar
Neutral oil
Dijon
Brown mustard
Dark, Milk and White Chocolate
1 # elbow macaroni
Condensed Milk

Other

Apple Cider
Pistchios
Spanikopita
Pigs in a Blanket

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