Christmas Dinner Traditions and Dessert Ideas
Christmas is my family's favorite time of year. We have many Christmas traditions that we've developed over the years. One is that each year one of us daughters (mother and sister-in-laws) is responsible for a part of the dinner. My favorite part to make is the Christmas desserts.
Our family is large, there are five sisters, four brothers and both parents still living. We also have a lot of wives, husbands, nieces and nephews mixed in. When we get together there are twenty seven people. Each year one of us cooks for a different segment. We put the dinner segments in a hat. After dinner, after all the dishes are done and we're relaxing we choose what our dishes will be for the next year. The menu is broken up into appetizers, before and after dinner drinks (for the adults), meat, stuffing / potatoes (starch), vegetables, rolls, desserts. Two people are responsible for meat, two for stuffing / potatoes and two for vegetables. One for appetizers, one for before and after dinner drinks and one for desserts. And, now that there are ten of us every year one lucky girl gets a get out of jail free card, which means she does not have to cook the next year!
As I said earlier Christmas dessert is my favorite. I start cooking about a week in advance. I know everyone's favorites, and like to add a few new things. I like to make lots of different types of desserts for the family. One of my favorites is Black Bottom Cup Cakes. Another is Greek Almond Cookies. These are super simple. Another favorite is definitely a Red Velvet Cake with Butter Cream Icing. It's my Grandmother's recipe and the family loves it. The Red Velvet Cake is the one thing we're guaranteed to have every year, regardless of who is assigned dessert duty.
I also make a Cinnamon Crumb Cake, a Chocolate Truffle with Raspberry Sauce and a Louisiana Roasted Pecan Pie. All of these things make quite an impressive looking Christmas dessert buffet and everyone is able to find something that they really like.
Over the years we girls have shared recipes between us. We all love cooking, us sisters were all raised to enjoy being in the kitchen. When a new item is introduced to the table there is also a menu card for each sister for that new item. When I added Greek Almond Cookies to the dessert table last year everyone was amazed how easy the recipe is. I got it from an actual Greek friend, Valerie. The Cinnamon Crumb Cake is also easy to make and goes really well with a cup of coffee after dinner.
One year when my sister-in-law picked the Christmas dessert portion of our meal I gave her a lot of advice on recipes as she really is not comfortable baking. I went to her home two days before Christmas and helped her make the traditional Red Velvet Cake. She did it really well and is now a pro!
Perhaps if you have a large family you can do something like our family does. We all enjoy our Christmas cooking tradition.