The Christmas holiday is all about enjoying time with friends and family. Traditions that outline the holiday season include decorating the home, sending cards and pictures to family members, enjoying children's plays at church and school and planning the celebration menu. Favorite Christmas dishes vary from family to family based on ethnic preferences. Many cookie recipes have come from Europe such as the pfeffernuesse cookies from Germany, Irish tea cookies and Russian tea cakes. Meat dishes vary but traditional fare includes turkey, goose, ham and game birds. Side dishes also vary from family to family and contain anything from noodles to a variety of vegetables.
Many gatherings during the holiday season start with variations on the old favorite, wassail. This punch beverage can accompany a dessert dish or served along with your dinner Christmas dishes. The basic recipe includes using one quart of apple juice, one quart of apple cider, eight oranges and four lemons sliced, ten cinnamon sticks, eight allspice berries and eight whole cloves. Cranberry juice can be substituted for the apple juice and cider if desired. Place the spices in a cheese cloth and tie tightly. Heat the ingredients in a large pot until heated through. This punch should be served warm. You may also add a jigger of rum or vodka, according to taste.
Although fruitcake often gets bad reviews, this is usually because the recipe itself needs work. A moist and flavorful fruitcake can be made and it doesn't have to include candied fruit. A delicious version can be made of dried fruits and nuts and finished off with an almond paste. The basic recipe that can be added to your xmas menus includes using favorite nuts and dried fruits and soaking them in rum for at least one hour. The cake itself can be made of a store bought yellow cake mix. Add the nuts and fruit to the cake batter and pour into a bundt pan and bake following the cake mix directions. The end result will be a fruit cake that your friends will actually enjoy eating.
Simple delicious Christmas dishes include broccoli casserole, green bean casserole, candied yams, cheesy mashed potatoes, cranberry walnut stuffing, cornbread dressing and winter squash with pecans. Easy Christmas dishes are made with the least amount of time and very few ingredients and all of these recipes fit the bill. The simplest holiday casserole has to be the green bean casserole. All that is required for this delicious dish is a can of French cut green beans, a can of mushroom soup and a can of dried onions. Mix the beans and soup together then top with the onions and bake until heated through. What could be simpler?
A holiday feast wouldn't be complete without a few desserts amongst the other Christmas dishes. Favorites include shortbread cookies, chocolate yule log, meringue snowmen, gingerbread cookies and cheesecake topped with fresh strawberries. Although cookies and pastries take a little more time to prepare they are always appreciated at any holiday party.
Everyone has their own unique menu that they share with friends and family during the holidays. Whether it is a traditional holiday menu or spice it up with new and unique recipes is entirely up to the hostess preparing the meal. The key to the success of the xmas menus is the variety of dishes prepared for the feast.