Category Archives: Christmas
My apologies for the late posting, but the holiday season has begun and we had two guests for dinner on Sunday. This got me to thinking about holiday parties and how to cope if you are on Keto and want to host a small party (depending on your local restrictions during COVID 19).
This year in lieu of a larger party which usually sees us having 40 plus guests, we have had to make significant changes in how we entertain. In our region, we can have 6 people together and for the next four December weekends, we will be entertaining four other people beside ourselves each Saturday.
The easiest way to handle this is to avoid cooking!
Charcuterie is a way of entertaining in France which involves presenting a variety of cold meats and cheeses, along with some fresh fruits and nuts and a selection of breads and crackers. Keeping in mind KETO, a charcuterie can easily be assembled on a lovely wooden cutting board or two or just spread out on a layer of butcher block paper on a convenient hard surface, along with paper plates, napkins, etc. Make it finger foods by cutting up your items in bite sized portions in advance. BYOB means you don’t have to supply alcoholic drinks!
The trick is to choose KETO items ONLY , especially with the breads and crackers!!!
FYI… no two are ever alike! It all depends on what items you wish to choose. Vary the amounts depending on the number of guests you are contemplating. Whatever you choose be sure to carefully check the contents label for the total percentages of carbs, protein and fats !!!
A charcuterie can easily be modified for those who are not on a Keto program, by including non-KETO items.
The following is a suggested Keto board I came across on Pinterest. There are many more to view on that site.
INGREDIENTS for 5 servings…
- 6 ounces sliced prosciutto
- 6 ounces genoa salami
- 5 ounces spicy capocollo
- 4 ounces herbed chevre
- 6-ounce sliced Manchego cheese
- 5 ounces sliced peppercorn white cheddar
- 4 ounces garlic white cheddar
- ¼ cup Sugar-Free Dried Cranberries
- 1/2 cup mixed nuts
- ½ cup fresh blackberries
- 10 strawberries hulled and halved
- 5 pepperoncini
- ½ cup pickled artichoke hearts
- 10 garlic stuffed green olives
- ½ cup pitted Kalamata olives
- ¼ roasted red peppers
- ½ cup Low Carb Pickled Red Onion
- 20 pickled asparagus spears
- ¼ cup stone ground mustard
- 1 sleeve low carb crackers
Select a large platter from the list of options in this post and carefully arrange all of the ingredients on top.
The holidays are always full of social events. What would it be without a cheese ball rolled in crunchy walnuts? Usually I make mine with Imperial Cheddar from Canada, some softened blue cheese and a package of Philly. This year, something a little different… did I mention it is Keto friendly, if you dip bacon rinds?
Blue Cheese, Bacon, And Scallion Cheeseball
- 4 pieces bacon, chopped and fried and drained to make bacon bits
- 8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
- 2 scallions (green onions), minced
- 2 Tablespoons parsley, chopped and divided
- 1/4 cup gluten-free blue cheese crumbles (or more, depending on taste)
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 cup chopped unsalted walnuts, raw or lightly toasted
1 In a medium bowl, combine the bacon bits, cream cheese, scallions, 1 tablespoon parsley, blue cheese crumbles, pepper, and salt. Stir together to mix.
2 Using hands or a spatula, form the mixture into a ball. Wrap with plastic wrap or place in an airtight container. Refrigerate for at least two hours.
3 Place the walnuts and reserved tablespoon of parsley in a small bowl. Stir to combine.
4 Unwrap the cheeseball and roll it in the walnut mixture to coat all sides. Press the walnut coating gently to help it stay on if necessary.
5 Store in an air-tight container in the refrigerator.
For 1/10th Of The Cheeseball
Fat (g): 12.9
Carbs (g): 2.2
Fiber (g): 1.3
Protein (g): 7
Net Carbs (g) .9
simply so healthy http://simplysohealthy.com/
No photo for this one as it is all blended together in a jar and then refrigerated. Great for using during the upcoming holidays…
Easy Cranberry Chutney
(Adapted from a recipe in Yumana’s Table by Yumana Devi)
Makes about 3 cups, and doubles easily if you’re serving a crowd.
1 (12-ounce) bag of cranberries
2 large apples
2 large oranges or limes
1 cup pure maple syrup (I used ½ cup)
- Zest the oranges.
- Wash and drain the cranberries and put them in a pot. (My 3 quart pot is the perfect size.)
- Peel, core, and chop the apples, and add them to the pot.
- Juice the oranges. Add the juice and the orange zest to the pot.
- Add the maple syrup.
- Bring the chutney to a boil over medium-high heat.
- Reduce heat to medium. Cook, uncovered, for about 30 – 45 minutes, until the cranberries have popped, the apples have cooked down, and the chutney has thickened a bit. Stir it occasionally while it’s cooking.
- Cool and transfer to a bowl; cover and refrigerate until ready to serve OR put it in an airtight jar, ready for use. Would be great over cream cheese as an appetizer or with roast beef…not just turkey!
What to do without Costco? I have had a bag of turkey meatballs in the freezer for awhile. The truth is we didn’t really like them! Not to waste I found this slow cooker recipe for Swedish meatballs and I got the chance to use them all up, never to buy again. If you have been following for sometime you will know that I had previously made meatballs for use with pasta. This recipe called for frozen ones. Et voila! Actually they tasted awesome…great for a buffet table.
Slow Cooker/Crock Pot Swedish Meatballs
1 can cream of mushroom (or chicken) soup, low sodium*
1 can beef broth, low sodium*
1 packet dry onion soup mix
2 tbsp. A1 steak sauce
1 (2 lb.) bag frozen meatballs
1 (8 oz.) container sour cream (1 cup)
1 (16 oz.) package egg noodles
sliced mushrooms (optional)
In a 5-6 quart slow cooker, mix undiluted soup with beef broth, onion soup mix and steak sauce. Stir well.
Then add in frozen meatballs.
Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours or on high 3-5 hours. (My slow cooker is always faster than the recipe calls for, in this case they were done in about 4 1/2 hours.
After meatball mixture is almost cooked, add in the sliced mushrooms and stir in sour cream.
At this time, put a pot of water on the oven to boil for your egg noodles (make according to package directions.) Drain noodles well when done.
Mix noodles and meatballs together. Or serve meatballs on top of noodles.
Note: Low sodium is my personal preference for this to keep it from being too salty. If I’m serving for a crowd, I will mix together noodles and meatballs and keep my crock pot on the ‘warm’ or ‘buffet’ setting. But when it’s just my family, everyone can serve themselves and grab as many meatballs, noodles and sauce as they like.
From the folks at Food Network…a little something different for Christmas dinner or use it as a topping for cream cheese appetizer.
2 tablespoons butter
1 small shallot, finely chopped
2 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, and diced
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves
1/2 cup golden raisins
3 cups frozen cranberries
1/2 lemon, zested and juiced
1/2 cup fresh orange juice
2 tablespoons sugar
Heat the butter in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the shallot, apples, and thyme; sauté until tender, about 3 minutes. Add the raisins, cranberries, lemon zest and juice, orange juice, and sugar. Reduce the heat to a low simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, until the mixture has thickened, about 20 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool. Transfer to a serving bowl and serve.
Recipe courtesy of The Neelys
© 2015 Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.
Up until last year I always brined my turkey according to a recipe from Emeril Lagasse. (its here on the blog). Last year I wanted a different brine recipe and on Food Network, I found Alton Browns Good Eats Turkey Recipe. Lo and behold I liked it better! Sorry Emeril!
So here it is…you can choose Emerill or Alton…
Good Eats Roast Turkey Alton Brown The Food Network
1 (14 to 16 pound) frozen young turkey
For the brine:
1 cup kosher salt
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1 gallon vegetable stock
1 tablespoon black peppercorns
1 1/2 teaspoons allspice berries
1 1/2 teaspoons chopped candied ginger
1 gallon heavily iced water
For the aromatics:
1 red apple, sliced
1/2 onion, sliced
1 cinnamon stick
1 cup water
4 sprigs rosemary
6 leaves sage
2 to 3 days before roasting:
Begin thawing the turkey in the refrigerator or in a cooler kept at 38 degrees F.
Combine the vegetable stock, salt, brown sugar, peppercorns, allspice berries, and candied ginger in a large stockpot over medium-high heat. Stir occasionally to dissolve solids and bring to a boil. Then remove the brine from the heat, cool to room temperature, and refrigerate.
Early on the day or the night before you’d like to eat:
Combine the brine, water and ice in the 5-gallon bucket. Actually you can find special brining bags in most supermarkets these days, made by Reynolds. Place the thawed turkey (with innards removed) breast side down in brine. If necessary, weigh down the bird to ensure it is fully immersed, cover, and refrigerate or set in cool area for 8 to 16 hours, turning the bird once half way through brining.
Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F. Remove the bird from brine and rinse inside and out with cold water. Discard the brine.
Place the bird on roasting rack inside a half sheet pan and pat dry with paper towels.
Combine the apple, onion, cinnamon stick, and 1 cup of water in a microwave safe dish and microwave on high for 5 minutes. Add steeped aromatics to the turkey’s cavity along with the rosemary and sage. Tuck the wings underneath the bird and coat the skin liberally with canola oil.
Roast the turkey on lowest level of the oven at 500 degrees F for 30 minutes. Insert a probe thermometer into thickest part of the breast and reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees F. Set the thermometer alarm (if available) to 161 degrees F. A 14 to 16 pound bird should require a total of 2 to 2 1/2 hours of roasting or less…use a timer. Let the turkey rest, loosely covered with foil or a large mixing bowl for 15 minutes before carving.
Recipe courtesy of Alton Brown, also featured in Food Network Magazine