Simple Christmas Day dinner


Since we spent Christmas Eve Eve and Christmas Eve with family, we spent Christmas Day at our house, just Mom, Cailey and me. I wanted to have the Christmas dinner, but I didn’t want to make too much food since it was just the three of us. The menu consisted of marmalade-glazed ham, cheesy grits souffle, caramelized carrots, and potato-Gruyere gratin.

I bought the ham from HEB and I didn’t realize it until I got home, but it game with a ready-made glaze. I used my own glaze anyway. The order I write the recipes is the order I prepared based on time and preparation so everything finished around the same time. If you can prepare dishes ahead of time, you can always reheat in the oven.

Marmalade-glazed ham

  • 3/4 cup orange marmalade
  • 2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 gloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon dried rosemary, or 3 tablespoons fresh rosemary
  • 1 cooked, spiral-sliced, smoked bone-in half ham

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a medium bowl, stir together marmalade, sugar, vinegar, mustard, garlic, and rosemary. Place ham in a 9×13 inch roasting pan. Brush the mixture all over the ham. Place in the oven for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until a meat thermometer inserted horizontally in the bottom portion of the ham (not touching the bone) reaches 140 degrees. Transfer to a platter and garnish with herbs and fruit if you like!

Cheesy grits souffle

  • 6.5 ounces sharp Cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 1 cup quick-cooking grits
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 6 large eggs, separated

Preheat oven to 375 degrees and grease a baking dish.

In a saucepan, bring water, margarine, salt, and 1 1/2 cup of milk to a boil. Whisk in grits. Cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer for about 5 minutes. Whisk well, then stir in nutmeg, cayenne, remaining 1 cup milk, and the Cheddar cheese. Whisk in 3 egg yolks; discard the remaining yolks. Transfer to a bowl and cool.

In a large bowl with an electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat all 6 egg whites until stiff peaks form. Add one-third of the whites to the grits mixture and stir until blended. Fold in remaining egg whites, stir gently, then transfer to a souffle dish. Bake 45 to 50 minutes or until puffed and golden brown on top.

Caramelized carrots

  • 3 pounds carrots, peeled
  • 1 garlic clove, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease a 9×13 inch baking pan. Toss carrots with garlic, paprika, 2 tablespoons oil, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Add to the baking pan, cover tightly with foil, and roast for 30 minutes. Uncover the roast an additional 20 minutes longer or until carrots are tender.

Remove carrots and garnish with fresh parsley.

Potato-Gruyere Gratin

  • 1 head cauliflower
  • 1 1/2 pounds potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 3 cups whole milk
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/4 ground nutmeg
  • 3 ounces Gruyere cheese, grated
  • Salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease a baking dish. In a saucepan, bring salted water to a boil. Chop the cauliflower and boil until tender then drain.

In a deep skillet, heat potatoes and milk on high just until boiling, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer 7 to 10 minutes or until potatoes are just tender, stirring occasionally.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl, stir water and cornstarch until cornstarch dissolves. Stir it into the potato mixture and simmer for 3 minutes or until mixture thickens. Stir in cauliflower, nutmeg, half of Gruyere, and 1/2 teaspoon salt.

Transfer the potato mixture to a baking dish and pour remaining Gruyere over the top. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes and let sit for a few minutes before serving.



Of course you can enjoy your Christmas dinner with Christmas sangria! Just add cranberry juice to white wine. Cheers and Merry Christmas!


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