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Old 10-31-2004, 01:29 PM   #1
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Annual Christmas Question

I asked a similar question last year, and think this may be an annual event, unless dh and I get adopted from some kind family in our village.

We have no one to share Christmas with, it's just the two of us. I am beginning to think about Christmas lunch. Tradition here is turkey, as we don't do thanksgiving in England.

What to cook?? I made Beef Wellington last Christmas. No idea what to do for dessert, usually tradition is Christmas pudding, but I fancy a change. I love cooking for Christmas, and feel very sad it's just the two of us, I am used to chaotically busy Christmasses with lots of people around. sigh. :(


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Old 10-31-2004, 01:36 PM   #2
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I am sure that if you asked around that there are some folks in your village that also wish to have someone to share the holidays with. Maybe you could find some others to come over and share your meal with you and your husband. Ask at your local church or social clubs or even your neighbors.

SC :)

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Old 10-31-2004, 01:38 PM   #3
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Aw, that's sad, kyles. Because most families want to be with family during the day, maybe you could invite the neighbors over for dessert in the evening. Think of all the ways you could dazzle them then!

If you can't attract any "Christmas orphans" to your lunch table, perhaps a pair of nicely roasted Cornish game hens would be in order for you and DH. A little fruit chutney, roasted potatoes, homemade rolls.........hmmmmmmm....I may invite my family to your house!
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Old 10-31-2004, 01:39 PM   #4
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The North Of England isn't like that......people are very closed in and keep themselves to themselves. We have made friends at the pub, but we never get invited to anyone's home for dinner and if we invite people to ours they always decline.......people are different here, I am sure it's not us! We shower regularly LOL! I think it highly unlikely we will get an invitation anywhere, and Colin doesn't do church. So we are consigned to Christmas on our own I think!
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Old 10-31-2004, 04:01 PM   #5
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We usually do Christmas by ourselves, the family lives too far away and there is work the next day.

Used to do lobster a la Americaine for an appetiser, but that is a lot of work.

Now we have simplified. A shrimp cocktail does us fine.

We usually do a standing rib roast for dinner, and we buy the best we can afford. And from the leavings we make a French onion soup to die for.

It takes a while, but it is worth it.
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Old 10-31-2004, 07:08 PM   #6
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Christmas dinner was always a big thing for me. But, Dad passed away about 6 years ago, my kids grew up and got married and now have more in-laws and out-laws than they can visit in one day ....

These days I just make a big Christmas Eve dinner for me and my step-mom ... and then on Christmas day I donate my time to helping cook at my chruch or someplace else for the homeless - where ever I'm needed. My kids get off the hook to make yet one more Christmas day visit they don't have time for ... and I can do something to help someone.

So, Colin doesn't do church - big deal ... ask the Vicker for someone they know will be home alone on Christmas day .. take them a meal and spend 30-minutes with them!
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Old 10-31-2004, 07:21 PM   #7
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Kyles, see if there is a retirement residence with ambulatory residents who may be alone for the holidays, or call an organization to which you belong, perhaps other members have the same situation. Also, my daughter and I signed up at a local homeless shelter and volunteered to serve dinner and pass out gifts. We had the same problem as my relatives are still in Norway or in other states and it was just my daughter and I until now, she is unofficially engaged so we will be spending holidays with them. Good luck I hope it works out.

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Old 10-31-2004, 07:31 PM   #8
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I remember this conversation last year! LOL You do have each other kyles and the day can still be special with just the two of you. Lots of people don't even have a special someone to share the holiday with.

Are you going to do Beef Wellington again? Or do you want something totally different. I like the cornish hen idea - glaze with a mixture of heated orange juice, honey, and fresh tarragon. Stuff with some wild rice that is cooked in some of the honey/oj mixture added to the water. and also add some chopped pecans and golden sultans (add the sultans at the end), stuff that little guy and bake, basting with the oj mixture.

Add some Brussels sprouts with a sauce of butter, shallots, and some dijon mustard.

Just some suggestions to get everyone's mind working! LOL What about Salmon Wellington?

"Count yourself...you ain't so many" - quote from Buck's Daddy
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Old 11-01-2004, 12:46 AM   #9
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I feel for you guys Kyles, because I lay out a chunk of coin that all our kids can come home and lay their little trotters in the family food dish for the Christmas period; I regard it as buying myself my own Christmas Present, as there are few things that warm you up as much as the "full tribe" about the table on 25 December for supper...

I expect in the "nawth" of England things are a good deal different than from NA and or NZ!

Are there any other clubs or means of association with others from different countries/continents that you could make new friends with? And/or have over for dinner either Christmas Day and/or Chritmas Eve? (If so, make it a real BLOWOUT!..that nobody will want to miss in future and will make a point in contributions in future!)

A "Levy" is, I believe, a Brit Tradition of the Holidaze, and you could host something like that on a come+go basis, that might compel the neighbours to attend... a good clam chowder with nice beers and wines would keep them coming back, if not pile up a sense of "social obligation"...

Anyways, those are my ideas, I know we ran though some of the same issues when we moved here 16 years ago, and could no longer count on "family" coming in for the feast days...

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Old 11-03-2004, 11:39 AM   #10
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Kayles, I just got my monthly "Taste of Home Magazine" e-newsletter and thought of you :)
Here's a yummy-sounding recipe for 2:

1 package (6 ounces) long grain and wild rice mix
2 tablespoons butter or margarine, divided
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1-1/3 cups orange juice
1 cup water
1/4 cup raisins
2 Cornish game hens (1 to 1-1/2 pounds each)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper

Set the seasoning packet from rice mix aside. In a saucepan, melt 1 tablespoon butter. Add rice and pecans; saute over low heat for 10 minutes or until rice is golden brown. Stir in orange juice, water, raisins and contents of seasoning packet; bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 25 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. Spoon about 1/2 cup rice mixture into each hen; refrigerate remaining rice mixture. Tie legs of each hen together; turn wing tips under backs. Place on a greased rack in a roasting pan. Melt remaining butter; brush over hens. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 to 1-1/4 hours or until meat juices run clear and a meat thermometer inserted into stuffing reads 165 degrees. Baste occasionally with pan drippings. Heat reserved rice mixture; serve with hens. Yield: 2 servings.

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