People don’t waste any time going from one holiday to the next. Thanksgiving JUST happened and already there are Christmas lights up and grocery stores are stocked with eggnog, candy canes and fruitcake (eew!). We haven’t even had time to take off our fat pants from that over-indulgent turkey day dinner — which is good, because we’re still going to need them for all the holiday baking that is about to happen.
Before we jump into all the Hanukkah and Christmas dinner talk, let’s take one last look at Thanksgiving. Although I’m sure everyone is still working on the leftovers, I prefer to enjoy my Thanksgiving dinner on the one day of the year it comes and then leave it be. No leftovers for me — I didn’t take any food home this year. I definitely had my fill of turkey, stuffing, and all the works. My whiskey-glazed sweet potatoes were just as good as they looked in the picture in Food Network. Not to toot my own horn, but it was my favorite part of the meal. Bubby roasted one turkey and my Uncle Gary grilled the other; both were so good. I only eat the white meat and it was so perfectly moist that it didn’t even need any gravy. My Aunt Patty is a great cook, too. She made the stuffing, broccoli au gratin, balsamic-maple-glazed-root veggies and even tried her hand at a homemade cranberry sauce this year. Everything was SO good. My cousin Leah’s husband Michael was in charge of the desserts. He made an apple pie and pumpkin cheesecake. Usually my other cousin Beth is in charge of the cheesecake, but she couldn’t join us this year for dinner, so Michael took over and did an awesome job. It’s so hard not to overeat when everything is freaking delicious. But Thanksgiving is the one day of the year that I think it’s totally okay to overindulge. Just make sure you wear stretchy pants. 🙂
Now, we move on.
This is such a beautiful time of year. I don’t celebrate Christmas, but I’ve always loved all the music and decorations and happiness the season brings. Hanukkah is fun, too, especially this year. The Kabbalah Centre is having a big festival on the first day at Mizner Park, then there’s a Hanukkah party at the Centre a couple of days later, then I have a family dinner at my aunt’s on the last night. Eight days of miracles — that’s what this month is all about anyway: miracles. The good things in life will manifest into great things, and the great things will become amazing. My favorite part about the holidays is all the “togetherness.” There are so many parties and get togethers, giving us all so many reasons to whip up something in the kitchen. Last year I did an “Eight Days of Hanukkah” post series with a new recipe each day. I made an apple-cranberry crumble, baked wonton-wrapper chips, chocolate peanut butter snowball cookies, mini sweet potato knishes, dark chocolate peppermint bark, mint chocolate rugelach and featured my dad’s famous potato latkes as well as a few other recipes that friends shared with me.
I’m hoping to do something similar to this again, so I’ve started to look around for fun holiday-inspired recipes. Of course, Pinterest came to the rescue! Check out these fun ideas.