Lets Start the Year Off on the Right Foot

Or the left!
After all, this IS the Sticky Menu Plan and we get to change our minds whenever we want. Try Getting Started if you need a jump up. Otherwise, Here We Go will take you to the latest posts and recipes. You can always find links to both in the top menu.

I did a LOT of menu switching last week.  In fact, what we actually ate bore no resemblance to the plan, partly because our family celebrated the holidays with a brunch on the 29th.  As usual, my menu was excessive and we had plenty of leftovers that had to be used. When does a Baked Ham ever get completely consumed at the original occasion? Along with many of my tried and true recipes I wanted to try something new, a Spinach and Fontina Strata. I think that recipe could use a little tweaking. The biggest issue is the cheese. Young Fontina is expensive and hard to find. I don’t think it exerted its presence in this recipe strongly enough to justify the cost, nor the effort it took to track it down. I think Gouda or even Monterey Jack would work at least as well. The Challa bread could have used a little time to stale up, but I do think it was the best choice of bread.

The Clover Leaf Garlic Rolls couldn’t have been easier to make. No one would guess that they started out as frozen dough. I do think they are easiest to prepare if you start forming the rolls when the dough has just thawed but not yet begun to rise.

No holiday brunch is complete without a sweet ending.  Our new favorite indulgence in the Triple-Chocolate Mousse Cake. This is the third time I’ve made it without a single change to the recipe, and it has been predictably scrumptious each and every time. I highly recommend this entry from the internet, but I can’t remember who originally posted it to give them credit.

Speaking of sweets, what’s Christmas with out cookies and candies? Do you think Santa would just quit coming to our house if we didn’t leave him out a plate of goodies? We left him a couple of new ones this year. Delicate Mint Thins are made with fresh mint and dipped in dark chocolate. They are reminiscent of the traditional Girl Scout cookies, but on a grown up level. As delicate and delicious as they are, these slice and bake cookies are very easy to make.

Santa’s sweet tooth was probably satisfied by my favorite new candy, Butter Pecan Fudge . I think this is by far the easiest fudge I have ever made. It is absolutely foolproof! No candy thermometer is required, but it has the texture of old fashioned fudge that is cooked to “soft ball stage” and then beaten until your arm falls off. Nope! You just bring a creamy sugar mixture to a hard boil for five minutes before stirring in a few more ingredients, then quickly spread it into a buttered pan. Done! I think I’ll try to turn this method into an old fashioned chocolate version like my Father used to make as a special treat when we were children.

It’s a good thing Santa gets around in a sleigh rather than a motor vehicle. We have our own special beverage that we leave him each year. It’s eggnog, but we spike it with Wild Turkey Bourbon Whiskey. It’s as dangerous as it is delicious! Thanks, Betsy and Wendell for that Christmas Eve indulgence.

Be thankful for what life gives you.


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