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The party season...

In the past six weeks -- starting with Thanksgiving -- we have had a party on five the the weekends. It is the season of parties, after all. In my world, parties always equals food. So in the interest of posterity, I thought I would write down everything we made. I need to stress the "WE" here. There is no way I could do this by myself -- however, my mom, Mry and I can do almost anything.

Thanksgiving. We had about 20 people.
  • 3 roasted chickens (because home-raised chickens are that much better than turkey)
  • Baked mashed potatoes
  • Corn pudding
  • 7-layer salad
  • Calico beans
  • Cranberry salad
  • 2 pumpkin rolls
  • Pretzel apple salad (made by my sister-in-law)
  • Orange tapioca pudding (made by my sister-in-law)

Baby Shower for my niece, Sasha. We weren't (fortunately) in charge of or planning the shower, however, we helped make the food, set up and clean up. While this was work, it was far less than had we been actually throwing the shower! There were 30+ people at the shower.
  • Breakfast burritos
  • French toast bakes
  • Mom-osa bar (all the fixings and decorations -- our gift to the mom-to-be!)

Family Christmas Dinner. There are nine of us at this party -- 9.5 if you want to get technical!
  • Spinich Dip
  • Buffalo chicken cheese dip
  • Shrimp scampi
  • Bacon wrapped asparagus
  • Fluffiest dinner rolls (Made with this cutting-edge Asian baking technique that super-hydrates the flour. SO. COOL.)
  • Clam chowder soup
  • Porchetta
  • Riced potatoes
  • Gravy
  • Chocolate mousse filled-chocolate cups
  • Millionaire Shortbread
  • Ulta-nutty pecan bars

Christmas soups. We always make soups for Christmas, not only does it make a good all-day meal for those coming and going, but we can pretend that it is less work. Since this is close to the same people we have at Thanksgiving, we're looking at 20+ people.
  • Corn Chowder
  • French Onion Soup
  • Coconut Thai Chicken Soup
  • Lemon bars
  • Pineapple squares

New Year's Eve Gumbo. Our chicken and sausage gumbo is our traditional New Year's meal. It's a 2-day affair that fills our beautiful 16-quart kettle. It is truly a work of art and everyone should be sad that they don't celebrate New Year's at our place because you all missed out on this culinary masterpiece. And since this was a WEEKEND long party, it also included two breakfasts! For this we had between 6 and 10 people, depending on which meal we are looking at!
  • Homemade buttermilk pancakes (New Year's Eve)
  • Gumbo
  • Sausage salsa con queso
  • Biscuits and gravy (New Year's Day)

Then there were all the little added cooking things that pop up around the holidays

Cookies. Total of 40+ dozen, easy.
  • Chocolate sugar cookies
  • Gram's Molasses cookies
  • Gram's sugar cookies
  • Hungarian poppyseed cookies
  • Lemon Melt-a-ways
  • Mint Chocolate sandwich cookies
  • Peanut butter cookies
  • Spritz

  • Carmel corn (30 quarts!)
  • Chex mix

  • Homemade Irish Cream Whiskey (which we call colostrum because my father was raised on a dairy farm and that is his humor)
  • Kahlua (which is so good I doubt I should ever make it again)

Gift baskets. Myr and I always make items to put in gift baskets to give to family and friends, so there was the stuff that needed to go in that!
  • Taco seasoning mix
  • Hot chocolate mix
  • Gingerbread biscotti
  • Carmel corn (a good part of the 30 quarts we made)
  • Millionaire shortbread (another batch because the one we made for Family Christmas was beyond good)
  • Mix-tape CD of some of our favorite Christmas songs (this is the 12th CD we have made!)

Well. I think that covers all the big events. In between there was work and decorating and cleaning and normal meals and life as usual.

It was work and it wasn't perfect, but it was beautiful. I'm thinking that would be a good theme to carry into the next year.

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January 2017
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