I love the fact that its colder outside and the Christmas tree is up and sparkling. Even if I AM recovering from a cold. I have presents to wrap under the tree. And, I don’t know why but I haven’t been able to find the porcelain figurines to go in my Nativity set. Right now I just have an empty manger waiting for baby Jesus, Mary, Joseph and the three Wise Men. I know I’ll find ‘em.
After all, the Christmas tree is beautiful and I love my little Santa doll I got in Paris a few years ago that sings “White Christmas” by Bing Crosby. (I am NOT making this up.) But the nativity set and the story of Jesus being born in the manger in Bethlehem is really what the season is about, right?
In the midst of all the holiday events and the craziness, we eat a lot of regular meals, too. It makes sense to make them reasonably healthy because we’re eating so much rich, decadent foods. At the same time we want something hearty and stick-to-your ribs because baby it’s cold outside.
The holidays are coming. We’re all acutely aware of that as the stores are completely decorated for Christmas. There’s a chill in the air that means Thanksgiving is coming soon and more holidays are on the way.
I like serving veggies that taste a little special but aren’t coated with heavy sauces or topped with mini-marshmallows. I want my guests to say, “That was delicious and I didn’t have to abandon my health goals to enjoy something special.”
Winter arrived in Las Vegas this week. It was the end of summer less than a week ago – temps in the balmy eighties. Suddenly it was gusty, chilly, better pull-a-jacket-on-with-a sweater weather. That’s how it happens around here.
After nine years in Las Vegas I’ve learned the drill. It takes a long time to make the agonizingly slow descent from the scorching, oppressive, make-you-want-to-cry 110 degree heat in August, to the cooler but still summery October.
Yesterday I wanted hot cocoa. I wanted my coziest, ugliest chenille sweater and a good, engrossing book. Instead I had meetings with two mentoring clients and a prospective client.
Plus, our carpet was cleaned. So, at 7:00 am, Ernie and I had to move furniture. Almost everything had to be up off the floor. My leather office chairs were in the bathroom. The dining table was in the kitchen. The side tables were on top of our bed. The carpet looks great, though. We’re ready for the holidays. The Christmas tree will go up next weekend.
Today, I intend to tuck into a good book underneath a cuddly afghan.
I learned how to make this amazing Grand Marnier Cranberry-Orange Sauce when I dated a guy who was an Executive Chef before meeting my husband, Ernie. This guy was so good as a Chef he cooked for three US Presidents. As outstanding as he was when it came to cooking he was not so hot as a boyfriend.
So, the relationship was short-lived. But once it was over I took with me some great recipes like this one. I also took knowledge I never had about food and cooking before that you’ll see sneaking in my posts now and then.
Always look for the good in every experience even though at the time it may not seem like it’s so great. There’s always a silver lining if you look for it. Now, I’m so grateful for that experience because I finally came to the understanding that I deserved more. Deserved better.
A little over a year later I met Ernie and he has been the love of my life since the day we met in August 1997.
That’s what these roasted four-way potatoes are like. But really brilliant. It’s perfect when you want a lot of color on the side of your plate in a starchy side dish. Which is surprising because starches like potatoes, rice and pasta are typically white unless you add color with bits of bell pepper, scallions or whatever you like.
What I love about these potatoes is they contain the rich, gorgeous colors of fall. But they have an effortless ease – like a comfortable pair of jeans that always fit just right.