Hope everyone had a wonderful holiday!
Traditions are discussed a lot here, and everyone has their must-see Christmas movies. For us, it's not December if we haven't watched Bad Santa, A Christmas Story and holiday-themed episodes of South Park, Family Guy and Aqua Teen Hunger Force. [Ed. note: Grow up? You fool!] This year my BF surprised me and found the 1964 Rankin/Bass Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, which I haven't seen since I was a child.
On Christmas Eve we hosted our annual traditional dinner with a small group of dear friends. In previous years I'd made seafood paella, but this year I veered away from that tradition and made cioppino. Although it was delicious, my guests took a vote and it's back to seafood paella in 2018. (Am not complaining. Note to self: don't mess with tradition.) I also made a delightful sugar-free low-carb peppermint cheesecake, and bought a chocolate layer cake wrapped like a gift, because I didn't think all the guests would go for the sugar-free option. Of course, the sugar-free cheesecake won out (and will certainly be featured in a blog post next year).
Christmas day was gloriously relaxing. For me, a rare day off. Music and movies playing all day, a leisurely breakfast, gifts to open [Ed. note: I got Joker socks and you didn't], taking our chocolate lab Marlowe for a long romp, and a Christmas Story-inspired Chinese take-out dinner of Peking duck and Chinese greens.
The aforementioned "leisurely breakfast" was this gorgeous, colorful, refreshing, jewel-toned citrus salad. Blood oranges and citrus are at their peak right now, so it's the perfect time to make it.
Wishing everyone a happy, healthy and adventure-filled 2018.
NOTE: I cut the sugar amount in half from the original recipe as my preference is to not over-sweeten, but if that's not of your concern, stick with the original recipe. I also added two Cara Cara oranges, which look like regular navel oranges on the outside, but the inside is red-fleshed, juicy and sweet. You can make this one day in advance. Keep chilled.
Number of servings: 8
Adapted from: Gourmet (December 2008)
Another seasonal (in California, we are in the throes of cherry and corn season) client favorite, this one is quick and simple to prepare, and the colors and ingredients scream summer. The sweetness of the corn with the charred lettuce, tangy pickled cherries, and shallots make for a fresh, vibrant combination.
Adapted from Heather Christo
Number of servings: 6
Pickled Cherries and Shallots
I'm Jacquie, personal chef & recipe developer in the bay area. Living life with my wildly funny boyfriend and dog Marlowe. Lover of books, bourbon, chocolate and movies.