Garlic-potatoes-done1-1024x680

Day 24–Christmas Eve

Welcome to Christmas Eve!  What a wonderful family day!  I am so excited to have everyone together–husband, sons, mother, sister, best friend.  I don’t know about you, but I will be spending my day cooking, at least until it is time to do the stockings.  Yes, stockings for grown-ups, because as you know I believe…

Plate and pinecones

Day 22–Texas Hash

My mom always made this great beef-noodle casserole called Texas Hash.  It is not what I usually think of as “hash” (a thick concoction of potatoes and vegetables with a little beef thrown in for good measure).  No, this is a beef and noodle casserole where the noodles cook in the juice from the tomatoes. …

Gift wrap

Day 20–Wrapping Gifts

Gift wrapping is an art. It is an extension of the gift itself, showing extra love and care in addition to the thought you put into its selection.  Truth is, the Christmas tree doesn’t look complete until it has dozens of presents under its lowest branches.  They are an organic part of the decorations. What makes a beautifully wrapped package?  A…

Christmas lights

Day 16–Loving the Lights

The lights of Christmas connect us with the past.  For as long as people have been aware of the seasons of the year, they have been finding ways to light up the long nights of winter.  We are talking about thousands of years of human history here, and me, I am part of that history.  We…

caramel popcorn

Day 15–Caramel Popcorn

Flavored popcorns are all the rage these days, but I was making this one when the primary source of caramel popcorn was Cracker Jack.  It is really delicious, and the caramel is great over ice cream, too. From the Atlanta Junior League cookbook, Atlanta Cooknotes (1982): Caramel Popcorn 2 cups popcorn kernels (I use 3-4 microwave bags)…

nutcracker

Day 13–The Nutcracker

Every year I write about The Nutcracker.  But not just any Nutcracker.  This is the one with Mikhail Baryshnikov and Gelsey Kirkland from 1977.  It is not just my favorite version of this ballet.  It is my favorite ballet production of all time. I am a huge Baryshnikov fan.  Imagine my surprise when he turned up…