Whether this is your first time making a holiday meal or you're a seasoned veteran, everyone can use a little help or inspiration from time to time. We're here for you. See what members of the Los Angeles Times Food staff plan to serve for their holiday celebrations.
Whether this is your first time making a holiday meal or you're a seasoned veteran, everyone can use a little help or inspiration from time to time. We're here for you. See what members of the Los Angeles Times Food staff plan to serve for their Christmas celebrations.
For me, Christmas tends to be an intimate affair, savored with close family as we catch up and reflect on the year and our blessings. We always begin with clam chowder, a tradition my mother-in-law began decades ago. The table will include some sort of gratin, Yorkshire puddings and one or two colorful vegetables. And no meal is complete without a glorious crown roast. Growing up, we always had my mother’s pies for dessert, and I now do the same, baking at least one to two pies to share after the main meal."
This is a meat-and-potatoes holiday dinner starring roast fillet of beef, which happens to be so easy to make, it practically cooks itself. And with such a delicious cut of beef, the potatoes ought to be special -- Daniel Boulud’s recipe for a really luscious gratin. There are plenty of vegetables here too, all on the light side to balance the beef and gratin: tangy mushrooms a la grecque that could be served as an appetizer with grilled bread, and two salads -- one with dates and blue cheese, the other with beets and oranges. For dessert, a hazelnut brown butter cake is simultaneously elegant, rich and rustic. "
While Thanksgiving menus have to follow tradition, Christmas is a dinner a cook can really play around with. For my Christmas dinners, I like to follow the best foods of the season -- oysters (raw or cooked), Dungeness crab (always, in some form) and, for an amazing centerpiece, a whole crown roast of pork stuffed with wild rice and dried fruit. Finish that off with a nutty pear frangipane tart and you’ve got a feast."