As for the tablescape, I bought a new red tablecloth this year from the Kate Spade home decor line (which I was happy to find at TJ Maxx!) and a few festive candles. And for the napkins I used our standard napkin rings and then just used a red ribbon to tie a bow and tucked a piece of fresh rosemary underneath (sage or tarragon would also work.)
If I am hosting a dinner party and making a big meal I don’t normally like to make a big fuss over appetizers, but I do like to make a special “clean” cocktail. And by “clean” I mean that I make my cocktails without refined sugar. They do, however, have alcohol. This year I came up with a recipe for Brandy Lemon Drops, which I am pretty crazy for. But last year’s Pomegranate Cocktail would be another festive holiday cocktail option.
But as for dinner, here’s what we’ll be having….
Our Christmas Dinner Menu
- Salad with Mâché lettuce (my absolute favorite!!), pomegranate, avocado, homemade spelt croutons and Nutty Herb Dressing.
- Cornish Hens with Risotto Stuffing. This will be my first time ever making cornish hens (fingers crossed all turns out ok!) I am modifying a recipe I found from Ina Garten online & using a whole grain risotto made with brown rice and quinoa. Ina’s Cornish Hen recipe called for a cornbread stuffing instead of risotto, so if you like the cornbread idea better than the risotto here is a delicious whole grain corn muffin recipe made with hemp seeds.
- Homemade Cranberry Sauce. A Christmas dinner must! I like to make my Cranberry Sauce with oranges, ginger and wine—but no refined sugar.
- Green Beans with Shallots, Garlic, Lemon and Almonds.
And of course no Christmas dinner menu would be complete without dessert…
- Individual Gingerbread Parfait Desserts. I’m serving them in clear glass Old Fashioneds (see photo left) and layering Gingerbread Spice Cake—which I make with pureed butternut squah—with roasted apples, “Clean” Candied Pecans and coconut whipped cream. ***Note: If you want to make the parfaits and don’t have the Old Fashioneds, you could always use martini glasses.
And that will be all! That should be plenty (wink.)