Haute n the Kitchen

Entertaining Inspired by my Travels & Traditions

Having just returned from two weeks in Rajasthan India, I, more than ever, feel the need to embrace the holiday season. Missing Thanksgiving may be part of this sentimental fever rising up inside of me; but also the sense of being “home” and needing to nest. I was in India during the recent Mumbai terrorist attacks and that too has made me want to celebrate this holiday season in the old fashioned way emphasizing family and the traditions we hold dear. While you may not find me going door to door caroling, or traipsing into a forest for the perfect tree; you will find me deep in my kitchen conjuring up all the classics of a true Christmas.


A champagne holiday cocktail party is a must to get the spirits soaring! There will be chestnut soufflé, caramelized onion bruschetta, mushroom crab cakes with cranberry jus, succulent bacon wrapped quail bites, rich dolcetta blue cheeses with lavender honey, candied orange slices and wine soaked figs.

Next, there will be a Christmas Eve dinner in anticipation of tiny hooves on the roof. Roast Beef with fresh horseradish and rich beef stock gravy; roasted and caramelized carrots, parsnips and potatoes; sautéed kale sweetened with oyster sauce,  baked artichokes with breadcrumbs and parmesan and then of course – a flaming Christmas pudding – all to be washed down with rich red wines tasting of tobacco, blackberries and oak!

Christmas morning and the excitement of opening gifts, excited voices and phones ringing with well wishes from far off places, begs more champagne and of course breakfast. Smoked salmon, lox, capers, chopped onion, lemon, crème fraiche, toasted bagels, pumpernickel triangles, hard boiled eggs, fresh melon, homemade orange ginger jams, herb cream cheeses and hazelnut biscotti.

Pull out those old Christmas traditions, dust them off and celebrate this year with a focus on what is truly important; family, friends and freedom. May your season be merry, your kitchen busy and your house aromatic with the smell of chestnuts roasting on an open fire.



Categories: Eat

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