Was your Christmas holiday merry and bright? I certainly hope so! Here in New York’s Hudson Valley, Christmas eve of 2015 was unusual weather-wise, as temperatures soared to a record-breaking high of 71°F. It was not a day to stay indoors!
For the sake of reference, here’s my house on a typical Christmas eve. If you live in Florida, the white stuff on the ground is called “snow.”
This year, instead of shoveling snow on Christmas eve morning, I started the day with cafe au creme in the herb garden. Lily the Beagle enjoyed the weather, too.
Then I drove to the train station, and picked up my dear friend Judy Katschke. Judy lives in NYC. We met in 1999 while standing in line for a flu shot at a drug store on Manhattan’s Upper East Side. We’ve been best buds ever since!
That afternoon, Judy and I shopped for organic coffee at Tierra Farm in Valatie, NY, and browsed the fun kitchen-inventory at American Pie in Chatham, NY. Then we raced home…
And drank ice-cold Pinot Grigio in the herb garden. Judy snapped this picture of me with her cell phone. If I told you this photo was taken in late-April, you’d believe me, right?
That evening, and courtesy of our friend David Deutsch, who votes in the Academy Awards and who receives films that will potentially be nominated for an Oscar, we were allowed to screen The Danish Girl in the comfort of our library/den. The film is a pseudo-biography of Lili Elbe, one of the first known recipients of sex-reassignment surgery. I highly recommend it. The film, I mean.
The next morning, the three of us opened our gifts to each other. Then I popped into the kitchen, and prepped Christmas dinner for 9 people, with Judy acting as sous-chef. The menu:
Roast Filet Mignon
Caramelized Brussels Sprouts
Puree of Sweet Potatoes
Dinner was great fun. I didn’t take any pictures, because it didn’t feel right to do so. But I can tell you that the wine flowed, and so did the laughter. I love a noisy dinner table!
Like David Deutsch, Judy Katschke votes in the Academy Awards, too. She brought along the film Trumbo, which we screened after dinner. In 1947, Dalton Trumbo was Hollywood’s top screenwriter, until he and other artists were jailed and blacklisted for their political beliefs. Another recommend.
And that, my friends, was how I spent the Christmas holiday. In the comments field below, I hope you’ll tell me about your own celebration. Did you cook? Did you travel? Did you…play outside in shockingly-warm weather?
Love ya –
Lol! The Danish Girl, Only in Cinemas and Kevin’s library/den… What great friends you have!
PS It was colder in Phoenix than in NY!! Only 32 degrees here!
Thank you for the movie recommendations, they sound really interesting. Let me tell you something, I’d love a tour of your gardens one day, if you ever think of inviting your fellow Hudson valley readers 🙂 I promise I’d see with the eyes and not with the hands if you promise not to make fun of my Sophia Vergara accent
Kevin Lee Jacobs says
Hi Susan – Wacky weather all over the country. BRRR for Phoenix!
Hi Nelly – My gardens will be open for tour a couple of times during summer 2016 — I’ll post dates in January. Hope to meet you, and to hear your Sofia Vergara accent!
VIcki S says
Both of us were down with nasty colds Christmas week, so we stayed in, slept and/or listened to music most of the day, and stirred long enough to have roast beef and Yorkshire pudding for dinner. Then back to bed for more rest….. Not exactly the most glamorous way to spend Christmas…. Yours sounds more fun!
We in north central CT also had fabulous weather. I made a lemon almond tart (Martha Stewart recipe) and brought it to my brother and his extended family. It was a lot of fun.
Rev. Leslie says
Gorgeous photo of you, Kevin! ~ and your dinner menu sounds wonderful. Like Susan in Phoenix, it’s surreal that Southern California is colder than upstate NY. It’s 10 AM as I write this, and 44 degrees outside. A nice change for us, though, after weeks and weeks in the 80’s and 90’s. Wishing you a very happy new year! 🙂
Mary in Iowa says
I LOVE this picture of you!!! What a gorgeous man you are! After a worrisomely warm winter, it decided to snow about an inch on Christmas Eve day, just enough to get in the mood. Spent the afternoon and evening on a young friend’s acreage, and gave a heartfelt thanks to the horses who provide massive amounts of equine gold for my gardens. My contribution to the annual gathering was stuffed mushrooms. After a delicious supper we went out and built a solstice fire (three days late) with the dry wood I had brought, and danced around the fire with the primitive flutes, tambourines, drums etc. which I still have from when my grandkids were little. Intent on scaring away the darkness with wild music and yelps, we suceeded in scaring the horses who crowded together and stiffened up. Just then the clouds parted and the full moon shone brightly, so we all started baying. That made the horses even more nervous, so Emily, a horse trainer, went over to the corral and played softly on one of the wooden flutes. Christmas Day was at my son’s house, and I brought your quinoa stuffing with the addition of dried cranberries and snipped apricots. Not much was left over, but I enjoyed it for breakfast this morning with a generous topping of melted cheddar. The dab of snow disappeared quickly, but today a real Iowa winter storm is raging, and it appears winter has officially arrived. Just got out the seed starting mix and some already prepared milk cartons to make the first installment of winter sowing today. 🙂
The pleasure on Christmas was all mine! I got to watch a master-chef in action while slicing my own clumsy thumbs as sous chef! It was uncanny sipping wine in your and Will’s amazing garden on Christmas Eve. I was expecting to see Valatie’s own Santa wearing a tropical shirt!! But if anyone knows how to entertain on Christmas —- and any day — it’s Kevin Jacobs. Bravo, my friend!!
How is it you look so totally relaxed after preparing a gourmet dinner? Not to mention you actually had the presents wrapped, because you mentioned exchanging them. Top it off with friends, good wine, laughter. I am so happy for you. We plummeted to a dime below zero on christmas day, but because we were celebrati n g christmas a day late this year, and I worked, my dinner was a bowl of penne with meat sauce, and a slice of garlic bread. Forgot to open the wine, so went wothoyt. Now for the good part! The 26th, my two grown daughter, their husbands and the 2 grandaughters,went sledding on that frozen tundra, and enjoyed sunshine on our faces, even tho it was only 13 above zero. We cooked two kinds of chili, and played Sorry, and opened gifts. I received the Essential oil kit and diffuser that I have been wanting, so joy! Our family is blessed with health, and success in their chosen paths. One daughter is a naturopath doctor, the other is an RN. My grandchildren are curteous towards strangers, and thoughtful towards everyone they meet.
The words of my grandmother came to mind. At her 90th birthday, all 22 grandchildren came to the celebration, and as she blew out candles, someone said, “Do you have
any thoughts about this occasion?” And she stood up, and said. “Yes. I just realized I am responsible for this bunch. I couldn’t be prouder than I am right now.
Maggie Gurley says
Sounds like you had a great time! Our daughter and her new hubs hosted this year, 18 of our 28 were able to come. I am still getting used to seeing a man in the kitchen as my newest son-in-law is the proprietor of our local Outback Steakhouse. My hubs of 25 years can nuke anything, though! lol They have two beautiful honey hams, homemade mac-n-cheese, twice baked ‘tators and cheesecake. The rest of us filled in as needed. I sauteed red onions in butter and brown sugar, we served it with the ham, YUMMERZ! For us, as long as we are cooking together, it’s all good! I also brought roasted corn and four dozen homemade sugar cookies that we decorated.
We also played ‘Heads Up’ with grown up, lil ones and everyone in between. It was so much fun! I believe there could be blackmail material on the video, especially when we couldn’t use our words LOL Lordy we looked goofy!
The weather was so great here in Oklahoma, we opened the doors and some us ate outside. Alas, the ice/sleet/snow storm came and we are cuddling up by the fire place. Oh yeah, there was also a 3.5 earthquake fifteen miles north of us. HA! We’ve seen it all this week!
Hugs & Luvs & A Very Grateful New Year!
What a wonderful Christmas! Your garden and you look wonderful!
What a fabulous picture of you, Kevin!
I made a 2-rib Prime Rib – grass-fed from Wellness Meats – roasted brussels sprouts with bacon, shallots and garlic and a cranberry/cherry sauce. Mixed fresh berries topped with whipped cream and toasted coconut chips and sliced almonds for dessert. Simple and delicious!
We watched a marathon of “Around the Farm Table” with Igna Witscher which is happily streaming episodes online. I think you would LOVE her! It’s on Wisconsin Public Television. She is a small dairy farmer who travels around the state featuring local purveyors of cheese and other local food. Utterly charming.
My birthday is 2 days after Christmas and we went down to Fairfax to Dr. Andrew Weil’s restaurant – True Food – and had a truly wonderful brunch. Highly recommended to anyone near one of his restaurants.
Happy New Year!
Sounds like you had a wonderful Christmas!! We also had unseasonably warm weather here in Western Ny. A little bit of day travel and way too much too eat. I couldn’t wait to come home and put the jammies on and like you pop in a good movie. But drat! I forgot the hot chocolate though. I did wake up to my Christmas tree on the floor not even 24 hours after it was up thanks to the orphaned kitten I have been raising. Blew out every light on the tree. But regardless we had a wonderful Christmas with our families, both that live close and those who traveled to see us. Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas. Did Santa remember Lilly and her cat siblings? I so hope so.
Jeanne Pancurak says
I host Christmas every year. This year, I know I made too much. After seeing your menu, I really, really Really know I made too much. I took notes. Not really. I copied your menu.
Your Christmas sounds wonderful! As is the pic you posted of yourself.
I just wanted to mention how impressed I am w/ your boxwood cuttings in your herb garden. They’ve really taken off. I’ve lost track when you planted those, but it doesn’t seem that long ago.
Happy New Year!
clara adkison says
My better half and I went to Houston, where our two children and their families live. Houston was our previous residence before retirement. We attempted to sit on the back porch there in The Woodlands. Temperature was in the mid-80’s. Therefore we soon revved the AC up another notch and went inside. Had a merry old Christmas Day, listening to White Christmas.
Beverly, zone 6, eastern PA says
We drove an hour, we overate, we laughed, we opened presents and it rained AGAIN! Freakishly warm, record breaking.
I took the entree, marinated turkey fillets, as well as the dessert, Almond Butter Cake ala the famous Marion Cunningham, culinary teacher and author.
My brother who lives in France came back to the US for a visit – precious moments.
Ready for some snow now.
We’ve seen Alicia Vikander in 3 films just recently, all labeled 2015. She’s one busy actress.
Great shot of you, Kevin! That’s a cookbook-worthy photo for the inside flap.
Myrtle Miller says
We had a quiet but happy Christmas. For lunch we had beef roast, green bean casserole, rice dressing and carrot cake cupcakes. And I made grapefruit rind candy which has too be an acquired taste but it’s loaded with vitamin C and the result was more energy for me. We were also blessed to see eagles flying near the apartment. The weather today was much cooler than the weather we had for Christmas thankfully.
Gay , Dutchess County ,NY says
So nice to see your friendly smile today. We spent our Christmas away from family and in Vermont for the 1st time. Our neighbors adopted us and took us to Christmas Eve services in an old hay barn, sitting on hay bales and singing all the familiar carols. The full moon added to the magic. It was so warm all the doors were open. On Christmas Day we went to friends for Christmas breakfast and later to another friend’s for a delicious ham dinner. I was sad not to be with my family but this was truly a Christmas to cherish and remember. Wishing you and yours a joyful and peaceful 2016.
Karen Thomas says
We also saw two movies, Joy and In the Heart of the Sea. I am especially fond of movies based on true events (Joy) and movies of a historical nature. Ron Howard went to great pains to be historically accurate in his portrayal of life on a whaling boat, as well as town life during the same era. Thinking of seeing it a second time.
Susan Golden says
Sounds like you had a great Christmas! 🙂 I drove to Georgia from where I live in WNY to spend Christmas, our birthdays and New Years with my sister! I left home when the weather was in the high 60s and arrived in the same temps (won’t be so lucky on the way back)! Seems like the holiday was movie time for lots of us! My brother-in-law is a movie buff with a great cable plan, so I watched oldies, but goodies with some of my favorite actors! Of course we started the marathon with It’s a Wonderful Life! You can’t do better than that! When I get home, it’s out to my gardens and raised beds to see how my nursery stock is doing. I have over 350 rooted boxwood cuttings all potted up and looking just dandy! Now, I wonder where I got the idea for doing that? Thanks Kevin! Happy New Year! <3
I made a big breakfast at my son’s house, then went home and washed my sheets and hung them outside to dry and wandered around my raised beds and herb garden… then made a massive dinner for my kids, then goofed off. Perfect day in Massachusetts.
This Christmas seemed to break records in many places. Here in East Tennessee it was quite balmy but with buckets of rain. The excess rain and warmth brought terrible storms to some areas. I am glad you were able to enjoy a warm Christmas with your Silver Fox and friend. And I love when you include your sweet dog, Lily, in the photos. Another sweet Beagle lives next door to me. His name is Duke. He comes a few times day for treats. I buy tiny ones so he does not over eat. He has me trained. Knows a certain bark to get me to the door. On occasion, he wants more and can make the saddest sounds. I do not want him to be fat so I must listen to this howl for a while until he gives up.
Happy New Year! I will be awaiting your column each week.
Pat d says
Sounds like you all had a great time and thank you for the movie recommendations. Here in West Texas we had the blizzard and east Texas had the devastating tornadoes. Just got sunshine back yesterday but with over 11 inches of snow and big snowdrifts and cool daytime temps it will stick around. That’s unusual for us. Usually when it snows one day it melts the next and warms up, but not this time. We did not loose electricity as so many did, so I’m a happy camper.
Happy New Year.
Darla Metro says
My husband and I went to our daughter’s house where she hosted Christmas morning for the first time. She made a wonderful cinnamon roll bread pudding for breakfast and then we opened presents. That night we all returned to our house for our typical Christmas spread of “finger foods” including crab imperial dip (so yummy)! We live in Galway (not too far from you) and since the weather was unseasonably warm on the day after Christmas we were able to take our 1923 Franklin out for a spin. It’s been such a treat to be able to have it out so late in the year. Now that we got snow today (and salt on the roads) the car will be in the barn until spring.
Kevin, thank you for sharing your Christmas story. You have a magnetism that draws me in every time I see your msg’s in my mailbox……Judy must have had such fun with you in the kitchen, I would be your Sous-chef any time!
We had a beautiful white magical Christmas here in the East Kootney area of British Columbia Canada. I will see if I can send you a picture via email. Are you on Facebook?
With love to you and your family and wishes for a fabulous New Year
Ingmarie E Peck says
Seems you had a great Christmas, love the photos,and you look just dashing.
Dear husband and I spent Christmas on the beach. Lido Key, Sarasota. Nice ,quiet and sunshine.
Happy New Year.
Sounds like a wonderful Christmas day for you. Mine was full of family, games, and food…garlic stuffed roast chicken, honey baked ham, homemade bread, my favorite pumpkin pie, and a free-for-all of side dishes brought by others. Perfect.
Happy New Year!
Chris C. says
Happy Holidays, Kevin, to you and the Silver Fox! We had an exciting, rainy Christmas Eve dinner with lots of friends. My husband cooked wild boar in a sous-vide for 56 hours, then seared it quickly on the stove top. I made an easy sauce with the drippings from the sous-vide bags, sour cream, and Dijon mustard. Friends cooked scalloped potatoes, Brussels sprouts, and a pear salad. It was a delicious dinner and the sous-vide method is my husband’s favorite cooking technique. It was also unseasonably warm here in North Alabama but we had heavy rain. Grower’s Champagne and Burgundy provide ample consolation for the downpour.
Happy New Year Kevin!
I spent my Xmas eve feeding the wild animals, dinner with dinner with the family then off to camp out under the moonlight. It was so warm and bright I didn’t even need to light a fire. I slept peacefully and woke to the sun rising in the east and the big ole fat moon setting in the west.
Aaaaahhhhh. Blessing to you this New Year may it be filled with peace and good will toward all.
rosemary freitas says
Lovely, Lovely, and so are you! Great photo. Greeting from now icy Ann Arbor
Gladys Rellinger - 5B- Waterloo, Canada says
It is very mild here. We had our first taste of winter yesterday but it is slowly melting and by days end I expect to see green grass again. I hosted Christmas again this year and everyone was able to make it. My son-in-law made Potato Leek Soup and I had a big dish of Perogies. The eight grandkids played together and had a wonderful time.
Sheri Rice says
Wisconsin has been unseasonably warm this winter as well. Earlier Xmas week, it was pouring rain. I actually weeded my garden and plants are growing!! Very strange for zone 4b. We headed up north to our cottage on the lake on Wednesday. Two cars were stuff with gifts, food and the two westies. Thankfully, despite it being a cottage, we have a full kitchen – not gourmet but it works fine. Christmas Eve I made my husband and mother in law a cheese tray including baked brie, aged cheddar, a creamy horseradish white raw cheddar spread cheese, and goat cheese with cranberries – celebrated with a glass of wine. We ended up feeling too full after that for the regular dinner I’d planned……so we hopped in the car to get air and look at Xmas lights! You can’t believe how dark it gets in the north woods, those lights really stand out. We saw no cars and about 20 wild deer. Came home and had a snack of jumbo chilled shrimp. On Christmas morning we enjoyed gifts around the fire. We nibbled cut fruit, and a fabulous raisin nut bread I buy at home. Toasted, it’s divine. I also made your recipe for eggs cooked in muffin tins with bacon. I used plenty of leftover cheese from that cheese tray in the eggs, including a smoked Gouda…….mmmm. For dinner we finally had the peppercorn crusted tenderloin and king crab legs I’d brought. Cooks illustrated had a recipe for the tenderloin to soften the bite of the pepper by blooming the peppercorns in oil before costing the meat. It all turned out delicious! To end the meal we had a fruit nut tart I’ve been making every year since 1996. I’d love to share the recipe as its soooooo good. This year I used your recipe for the pate brise sucre for the tart crust instead of the one in the recipe and it was amazing. I’ve been using a local hand rolled sweet butter that’s really delicious and makes your recipe even better. To balance all that food, we took our younger dog for long walks every day. It was mild and he so enjoys them. There’s a game farm nearby it’s fun to walk by and view the elk, trophy deer and white caribou. Our last day, my husband took his daughter to see Star Wars in a nearby town while my mother in law and I hit the sales at the mall – a perfect way to get back to civilization for a while. 🙂 happy to be home but happy we had our little escape!
Hello from Jersey. We also had 71 degree weather. I am still somewhat new to the state, having married and moved here last year. I seldom cook anymore (wheelchair bound with weak arms) but I married a wonderful cook who make delicious lasagna. Our blended family is large, happy and loud. I love a loud table, too. Happy New Year, Kevin, to you, The Silver Fox, and Lily the Beagle! May the coming year be healthy and prosperous.
Long time reader, first time commenter. Your new mobile site is delightful! I liked your site and blog before, now I love it from my phone! Great job and Happy New Year!
Marjie T. says
Greetings from the shores of Lake Michigan, where is was warm on Christmas but is now under 7 inches of wet-pack snow. We had Christmas brunch with the family in the morning and in the afternoon we host an open house for “Orphans and Runaways” – people we know who are not with their families, or choose to escape them. It is always fun and interesting.
Best wishes for a wonderful new year. Thank you for all you add to our tables and idea banks!
Love the photo!
We had a traditional Latin Christmas with friends and family here in sunny South Florida. Roast pig, moros, maduros, yucca, et al. Dessert stole the show however, the best tres leches ever and a rum cake that was sheer indulgence. Oh the weight poured on just by eyeing the feast!
Happy, healthy New Year to all.
Great photo! After opening and reading our Christmas cards and letters ( we consider them a gift from; our friends to be opened on Christmas Day), we ate the Eggs Benedict Casserole I had prepared the night before (Didn’t’ want to spend time in the kitchen helping my husband poach eggs!). For dinner I prepared Rosemary Cornish Game hens, wild rice pilaf and Harvard beets with homemade multi grain bread. Dessert was Pumpkin Surprise — requested by my husband.–He eats it for breakfast! Since we had 12″ of snow on the ground with snow clinging to the branches of the evergreen trees, we spent the day enjoying our view across the valley to the mountain range outside our living room window. Very nice!
Happy New Year!
Chased our 2 1/2 yr old granddaughter around–70+ in SE PA so we played on the swings, investigated blooming snowdrops and saw bluebirds. This is the second year for Bluebirds on Christmas and we usually never see them. I think they might be Christmas Angels in disguise.
Oh and we picked lettuce from the garden for dinner, another first!
Happy New Year “almost” to all. This Christmas we spent in Cooperstown, NY at our son’s. It was so warm that at times we went out onto the deck. The little birds were flocking to their birdfeeders all day. We all thought that was funny since they live right in the woods and with such warm weather there is plenty of other food still available for the birds. This year we had pork roasts, mashed potatoes, a wonderful roasted mixture of veggies, plus plenty more. All day we had enjoyed a big variety of appetizers including my well loved Salmon Ball. This year there were 12 of us. Throughout the day we played board games, plus mini table tennis,the younger people played some very invigorating games on TV. We also watched some old time Christmas Movies. (White Christmas was new to two of my daughter-in-laws adult siblings as they grew up in Peru-really enjoyed how much they enjoyed seeing it for the first time ever). A red wine was enjoyed by adults along with a variety of homemade Christmas Cookies. For breakfast my dil made her traditional Peruvian Hot Cocoa with a specialty Chocolate they get from Peru, due to my allergies I had to skip the hot cocoa but did enjoy Chocolate Mint Coconut Milk. All in all it was a lovely Christmas. (Santa didn’t forget the dog and cats). I had been at my son’s for 4 days and we came home Christmas night where my dog enjoyed his new comphy bed Santa brought him. Last night we finally got the missing snow, right now we have very rock hard snow and a lot of icy roads to deal with.
For New Years we will be off to visit our daughter’s family in NYCity. Can’t wait to see the other grandkids (age 1 and 3). Hope your New Year’s is as much fun!
Rhonda Strahler says
Hello HANDSOME!! Great picture of you! It sounds like you had a beautiful holiday with people you love (Isn’t that what it is about after all?)
I made your Glöög (using brandy) and the caramel-chocolate mousse. A hearty recommendation for both of these, in moderation of course.
Annie Guss says
I love you new photo! I made the caramel chocolate mousse 3x since you posted the recipe. Twice as practice on what kind of chocolate worked best; final version for Christmas eve party. A big success. Because it’s so rich, at home I put a scoop in a bowl and add some cream. At the party, we used a container of whipped cream (the kids love it). Happy New Year from Vashon Island, WA.
Though we were enticed by the possibility of snow on Christmas, our day in Redding CA was sunny and brisk, perfect for a walk on and around the amazing Sundial Bridge.
Back home, warmed our tummies with home-made potato leek soup and sourdough bread.
Happy New Year!
Sue Smith says
You enjoyed the kind of weather we had last year. This year Oregon is back to rain, rain….and more rain. Mudslides all up and down the coast. But, Christmas came anyway, and ours was quiet and peaceful. We had our traditional homemade clam chowder and shrimp salad on Christmas Eve and turkey and all the fixins on Christmas Day.
How awesome! It was warm here in Maine also! My cat & I spent some of the day watching my bees..all out & enjoying the warmth of the sun! Thanks fof sharing your day!
Super photo, Kevin. I have found that the best photos are often taken by folks whom we love. It brings out some sort of inner energy and glow to us, even if some of us are far less photogenic… and that love is captured on “film” or SD card!
I can see how comfortable you are with your beloved friend Judy. Glad your holidays were so fulfilling and filled with Love!
Odd weather here in the San Juan Islands, WA. Pussy willows, marrionberry have blooms! (About 2 months ahead on the pussy willow bloom) And I cut back and thinned the raspberry canes that had fruit on them! Of course weeds are sprouting up every where, they never take a break. Christmas meal was a beautiful crock-pot roast, sauteed mushrooms, whole baked garlic, twice baked potatoes and mixed veggies. Dessert was a big bag of Russel Stover’s chocolate and homemade raspberry/blackberry cordial.
Your friend took a wonderful picture of you!
Happy New Year to your whole Clan!
We had a wonderful time when our two NYC dwelling kids flew to Iowa for Christmas. Our dinner of prime rib was served with a wonderful new roasted vegetable combination (for us) of brussels sprouts, cubed butternut squash, and fresh cranberries. Was it wrong of me to look forward to the day when the kids were finally old enough to drink with us? They are, and we all enjoyed drinking our warmed glug with slivered almonds and raisins. Now the kids are back to their city jobs and I have snow to shovel, but on the inside, I feel like you look in that photo.
Robbie Lou says
i too love the pic of you looking so wonderfully content and relaxed! We prepared marinated rosemary garlic pork tenderloin on Christmas Eve and delivered dinner to my 93 year old mom who manages to live in her own home in spite of many challenges. She so loves the oak trees that surround her home and the wildlife that visit her yard. We celebrated with extended family on Christmas Day with a traditional bone in smoked ham with pineapple jalapeño salsa, caraway rye bread, and some killer salads. Yummmm! Our mild weather was appreciated by all who traveled that day and by me. I putzed outside all morning. Oh so Merry!!!
Donna Clary says
Love the “April” picture, best of you I’ve seen. Really handsome! I have been wanted to see “The Danish Girl,” but alas…not here yet. We live in a relatively smaller town. Happy New Year!
We had a lovely rib roast and beautiful roasted brussels sprouts, too, so much we didn’t have room for the plum pudding and HARD SAUCE until Saturday morning! Question: Here in NJ the rows of garlic in my raised beds are up about 8 inches. Will they survive? Also worried about my fig trees – putting out growth now.
Kevin Lee Jacobs says
Hi Susie – My garlic has about 8 inches of green growth, too. This has happened during other winters here, and not only did the garlic survive the (imminent) deep freeze, but it produced the largest heads ever! Fig tree: I don’t have one, so can’t answer your question.
Christmas was very very quiet this year for us in Colorado. Husband had major surgery early in the month and travel was not possible and could not have grandkids around while he was healing. We did put up the tree and invited a few of friends for Christmas brunch. I had made my fabulous banana bread, shortbread cookies, fudge, the best quiche ever with bacon and sausage, fresh fruit plate and a wonderful arugula salad with pears, dried cherries, red onions and candied walnuts. Of course there was champagne for those who wanted. It was a wonderful Christmas with good health news of husband’s surgery and to have long time friends share all the blessings. Then we were two again and finished the day with my New England clam chowder and fresh Kevin’s sourdough. Blessings and health for 2016.
Trying my hand at winter-sowing. I planted Cosmos, Alyssum, Snapdragons, Globe Amaranth, and Larkspur. I love reading your articles and seeing all the pictures of your beautiful plants. The food is lovely as well. Have a happy 2016!
My sister and I hosted an Open House Xmas Eve. Lots of great food and your Glogg recipe was a hit !!! Thanks Kevin
Janet Metzger says
Christmas eve mass with my fiance. Christmas Day drove to Keller to be with his family. They got to eat Southern Comfort Food while I ate food-free food! At least I had a fine brisket prepared and stashed in the freezer! Came home, went for a walk (77 degrees!) and called my family in Portland.
The tornado was 2 miles from my house, not too close. Several friends have damaged homes. Wild weather!
This is the 4th day of Christmas. Enjoy the next 8! And then party some more on Jan. 6!
PS: great photo! the movies sound fascinating. I know your food was good!
We had Christmas with our daughter and her family from Portland, OR. Fortunately it snowed two days before their arrival and during their visit. Our grandchildren love sledding, building igloos, having snowball fights, etc. right outside the front door. We were informed that visiting PoPo and PaPa in Montana is their favorite vacation site… this from a five and nine year old.
A huge plus for us …. they were here to clear our very loooong driveway!!!!!!!!
Our best to you and the Silver Fox for a Happy New Year and Joyous 2016,
Central Iowa Susan says
Don’t want to bore you with mundane details but did want to share a couple of things with you….
First, the weather in Iowa has been remarkably mild this winter too. That is, until Goliath came to visit and dumped tons of snow upon us. Up until then I would look out my kitchen window and look at my raised beds which I repeatedly congratulated myself upon “putting to bed” just like Kevin does! Lovely.
Second, I have made your cheese stick appetizers for 2 separate parties this season and have received rave reviews both times. And that’s for both flavor AND presentation.
Glad you had a nice celebration.
Sounds like a lovely Christmas dinner, Kevin. You have such a magical touch with your entertaining. Well, out here in the Sacramento, California area, we are having “cold” weather. That means that we’re running between 41 – 59 degrees during the day and we’re dropping down as low as 27 degrees at night – bad news for our citrus trees. I have C9 Christmas lights strung throughout my big lemon bush (it’s never turned into a tree), which is loaded with fabulous Meyer Improved lemons right now. This is quite a change from last year when you all were snowed in and we were warmish and lacking water. (The heavy snowfall this year will not put us right).
My question for you, Kevin – do you have the recipe for Caramelized Brussel Sprouts somewhere on your site? Thank you so much. Happy New Year to you!
Deborah L Marshall says
Hello from So. FL. Looking forward to a quiet day at home. Hot, humid. Ugh. Neighbor regaled whole neighborhood with bad, out of tune, salsa music ALL day. Dirt bikes screaming up and down the street. Not exactly a quiet day, but actually not a bad day either. Happy New Year, love your blog.
Happy New Year, Kevin! After seeing your pictures side by side I had two thoughts. One was that two Silver Foxes reside at your home! The other was that you should update your blog photo…silver hair would stand out from the kitchen cabinets and not blend in… Just a thought.
Our Christmas Day started with an eighty mile drive to our daughter’s family in suburban DC. We were greeted by the aroma of bacon.followed shortly by yummy French toast made with real French bread. The turkey was out in the Green Egg as we opened gifts. I’d made a fresh fruit salad to bring, made cranberry sauce there. My main preoccupation was to marvel at how our daughter managed a sick 3 year old, a 4 month old, a job, and serving a delicious meal. I loved doing some baby care, and pick up tips on mashed potatoes..add lots of butter, some sour cream, and prepared horseradish..delicious! And roasting vegetables..even my most disliked vegetable, Brussels sprouts, is improved by roasting. Who knew that was possible?! Happy Cooking to all until we can also garden!
Thank you for last weeks recipe of caramel chocolate mousse, Kevin. We had that for dessert on Christmas Eve and one guest asked if she could take what she couldn’t finish home! We were happy to oblige. Happy New Year!
Sounds like a lovely holiday. I had dear friends over for Christmas Eve dinner. Included in our menu were roasted Brussels Sprouts too! Such a hit with the teens that were present! Happy New Year to you all!
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! We celebrated our Christmas with your wonderful make-ahead spinach & cheese strata (a tradition). For this evening, I will prepare your most delicious onion soup (Sorry, I don’t remember the official name of the recipe.) Regardless, it’s all good! Down-right fantastic! Wishing you all the best!!!!
Happy New year to all! As I live in Noosa on the Sunshine Coast, Qld Australia it was hot, 30+ degrees, celsius not fahrenheit. We had cold baked ham, king prawns with various dipping sauces, turkey, salads followed by passionfruit whip and Vicar’s secret all of which is family tradition. Breakfast is ham and eggs. Swimming and playing in the sand follows. All in all a typical Australian Christmas.
Valerie C. says
Merry Christmas & Happy New Year! It sounds like you had a wonderful holiday! We had relatives here from London. It was great and I am still tired. I’m a one woman show in the kitchen and more, lol. They left yesterday.
I hosted Christmas for part of my BIG Irish family ..at last count I think we total around 33…that being said I had dinner for 14(us included)! ☺ It was a great time..We started with great appetizers, wines, eggnog..then we loosened our waist bands for dinner, the traditional Ham and fix-ins then the deserts, too many to count! After many laughs of new and old stories we all settled in for a little gift giving with some after dinner drinks ! It was a really nice Christmas…
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and yours!
Glad you took time off and basically reposted last week’s. Happy New Year!
I delivered my Christmas cookies in a timely shirt! While the weather has been good for my fuel bill the ticks are out in full force, we need some cold to get them to die off. Love Tierra Farms! Have you ever tried their chocolate covered dried cherries? I can’t leave the store without grabbing some.
* should be t shirt! Auto correct!
Donna McCommon says
Love your picture! Hope all your holidays were great and wish you a wonderful New Year filled with much success, good health, and lots of love.
Thanks for all the wonderful recipes and good advice.
Julie R says
That is such a nice picture of you Kevin. I liked hearing about how you spent your Christmas. We stayed home and cooked a big feast for Christmas, with ham and a bunch of sides. It was me, hubby and and our two daughters, along with my mother in law. We had a nice time visiting and laughing lots. And our dog Snickers got to enjoy some Christmas ham also. = ) Happy New Year everyone.
In the spirit of cooperation, I offered to host Christmas for my children/partners, granddaughter and several sisters (I have 6!) on December 26th. For Christmas Eve I invited my lifelong friends 92 year old mother for a nice dinner, she brought my favorite cognac and we played Boggle while enjoying my collection of Christmas music; Andre Rieu, Il Divo, Johnny Cash, Bing Crosby, London Symphony, Roger Whitaker, James Galway….. Lovely evening and our Christmas on the 26th was wonderful. Everyone contributed to my ham and scalloped potatoes, cabernet sauvignon, pumpkin dinner roles fresh from the oven. Cherry pie from my sister’s cherry tree planted in my mothers honor, red sweet sour cabbage, onion & apples, wonderful mixed green salad with pears and raspberries, spiced pecans and poppy seed dressing. Oh, we did squeeze in some Grand Marnier, exquisite dark chocolate and awesome coffee. When everyone left very late the kitchen was spotless – wow! I was exhausted but we had a wonderful day opening gifts, sharing memories of grandparents no longer with us, and memories of good and ‘bad’ gifts. The memory sharing and toasting was the very best along with some tears of joy and sadness. Happy New Year to everyone. Oh and in January we have 6 family birthdays as well as 7 additional close friends….. Isn’t life wonderful!