Above and below are some of the sides I made to go along with our holiday ham. Above - my first attempt at cooking (and eating, believe it or not!) Brussels sprouts. They were very delicious simply roasted with a few thin slices of apple in olive oil and tossed with some bacon (I figured a bit of bacon makes everything a little more palatable, right?), sea salt, and a splash of white wine vinegar. The potatoes below were inspired by a recipe in Bon Appetit for German Fried Potatoes. Unfortunately, I cut out the ingredients, but only part of the directions. The concept seemed simple enough. The potatoes are parboiled the night before, refrigerated, and then cut into pieces and pan-fried in lard (or bacon-drippings in my case). I fried the potatoes along with finely chopped red onion. The potatoes are then dressed with: olive oil, mustard, malt vinegar, and salt. The recipe also called for a splash of lager beer. It's garnished with finely chopped chives.
When I announced we'd be conjuring Nana tonight, my older daughter thought I was proposing a seance. No...just following Nana's recipe for Magic Cookie Bars from our probably 35 year old cookbook. Nana would have been very happy with the cookie bars we made for Santa!
Here are some other photos from my trip to Longwood Gardens. This festive wreath below is made of different herbs.
This tree, in a section of the Longwood holiday display, was made by the music department at a local school. I thought the sheet music paper chain was very cute.
I'm not sure what's going on with the order of things, but I know many people who don't have much reason to celebrate this season. Tragic and very sad things are going on for several people I know right now. I do hope everyone has a happy and thankful Christmas and New Year. And for those going through a rough time, I hope you can find solace in friends and family, and know that things get better.