If you are reading this, the world has not yet come to an end! Whew. If I get to live for a few more years, I also get to stick to my rule of nothing serious being said by me in this blog during the holidays. Therefore, this will not be about anything horrific that has happened in the past month nor anything about the edge of the cliff. Instead I am going to share some of my favorite holiday recipes – all of which involve alcohol!
My character, Alex Garfield, has two favorite martini varieties – her own version of a Cosmo and Martini Alex as Chef Geoff named it.
1 cup Stoly vodka
4 tablespoons cranberry juice – a 100 percent – no “cocktail” allowed
¾ teaspoon Cointreau
¾ teaspoon simple syrup
Shake well. Put in freezer to get ice cold! Serve up in a martini glass.
MARTINI ALEX for two:
1 cup Stoly vodka
8 drops Sour Apple Pucker
Shake and pour into a chilled martini glass.
BIG JUANITA’S INDUSTRIAL STRENGTH EGGNOG
12 eggs separated. Beat yolks.
1 tablespoon sugar to each yolk
1 pint whipping cream
2 cups “good bourbon”
Beat yolks, gradually add sugar.
Pour bourbon over yolks, beat well.
Beat egg whites till soft peaks form but not dry. Add to yolk mixture.
Whip cream and fold in. Pour into silver punch Bowl. Sprinkle with nutmeg and serve in silver goblets.
Now as for food – food is always better if you add a splash of alcohol to it. Chocolate cakes should have a bit of Kahlua thrown in. Turkeys should be roasted with a basting that includes Grand Marnier, Apple Brandy, or Bourbon. (Makes the skin browner also!) Recently, a good friend added a great dressing (or stuffing as some call it) to the list of foods that are divine and include something alcoholic in the preparation. She kindly is allowing me to share with you.
MARA’S SAVORY WAFFLE STUFFING:
2 cups of all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon of salt
4 teaspoons baking powder
2 tablespoons white sugar
1 1/2 cups of warm milk
1/3 cup melted butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1. In a large bowl, mix together flour, salt, baking power and sugar; set aside. Preheat waffle iron to desired temperature.
2. In separate bowl, beat the eggs. Stir the milk, butter and vanilla. Pour the milk mixture into the flour mixture; beat until blended. (I used a kitchen aid.)
3. Ladle the batter into a preheated waffle iron. Cook the waffles until golden and crisp.
4. Break up the waffles into pieces with your hands and spread them out on 2 baking sheets. You can then put them in the oven at a low setting and let them dry out. You can also leave them out. I think I left them in the over at 200 degrees for 3 hours and then just kept them in the oven after I turned it off and let them sit. (The whole waffle part can be done a day or more in advance.)
5. Make a package of bacon. Then chop the bacon into pieces. (If you need more fat, feel free to make it two packs of bacon.)
1 onion (chopped)
salt & pepper to taste
1 apple (chopped)
1/4 cup of whiskey or bourbon
leftover bacon grease
4 whole eggs
2 egg yokes
2 cups of milk
leftover bacon grease
salt & black pepper
1 tablespoon of brown sugar
6. Chop the onion, sauté in bacon fat with the thyme, salt & pepper.
7. Add chopped apple to onion and sauté for 2 minutes just to coat in fat and to soften.
8. Turn off flame, add booze, turn flame back on and simmer 1 minute.
9. Let cool.
10. Whisk 4 eggs, and 2 egg yokes in a large bowl, add 2 cups of milk and also maybe a little more bacon grease if you want. Add some extra herbs you have left over as well. More chives are always good.
11. Add some salt & black pepper and a tablespoon of brown sugar, mix.
12. Add the cooled apple onion mixture and stir.
13. Pour over waffles.
There should be enough moisture that if you press your hand down some ‘custard comes through’ if it is too dry, just pour on some milk and maybe another whisked egg.
You then mix it all up and out into a buttered dish.
Bake it for 45 minutes at 350 degrees covered. And then serve. If you want to do all this the day before and refrigerate it over night then slightly under bake (35 minutes). To warm it up the next day, splash some water on it and cover and bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees and then uncover until it is golden on top which should take an additional 15 to 20 minutes
HAVE A VERY MERRY HOLIDAY!