Christmas and Beyond

I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas! Ours was full of fevers, coughing and teething. I guess when you have more than one kid, someone is always sick.

Christmas eve we went to a cookie decorating party with some good friends. But, the tot (3 years old) doesn’t quite understand the concept of decorating cookies. He thought it was more of a cookie eating party. 🙂 I made some gingerbread cookie dough ahead of time, and he helped me bake them in the morning. The cookies were good, but next time I will either add more molasses or less flour because the dough was very crumbly.

For Christmas we had honeybaked ham, sweet potato casserole, green beans with vinaigrette and bacon pieces, and my mom’s cranberry pear sauce. For dessert I bought a pumpkin pie from Publix – saved me time and they are pretty good. I think honeybaked hams are worth the money. A mini ham has been feeding us lunch everyday since Christmas and this year I experimented with a ham bone soup. I modified a recipe from damndelicious.net. I boiled the ham bone in a combo of chicken stock and water, probably for about an hour. Then I took out the bone, let it cool, then chopped up the remaining ham. I poured the liquid, carrots, bay leaf and ham into my crockpot. Then I sauteed garlic and diced onion and added those too. We eat a lot of beans around here, but I’m not a fan of big kidney beans in soups, so I diced up more potatoes and left out the beans. I bought corn like the recipe called for, but forgot to add. 🙂 I let everything simmer in the crockpot for a few hours, then turned it down to warm. The soup was simple, but it was tasty and I’m SO happy the bone and extra ham didn’t go to waste (as well as leftover organic chicken stock). I will definitely make it again!

Yesterday I tried another new recipe, shrimp po boys. I took the tot to the grocery store to buy ingredients for a remoulade sauce from Allrecipes (I reduced the servings to 2). Then we went to the “fish and crab place,” aka, Joe Patti’s fish market. As always, it was PACKED with people. The fish market is one of my favorite places to go, probably because this is the first time I’ve lived anywhere with a fresh fish market and I think it’s amazing. The fish is so fresh it only has a 48 hour guarantee. I bought 2lbs of 21/25, tail on shrimp.

For the sauce, I used a Thai sweet chili sauce, left out olives and celery, and used spicy brown mustard instead of Creole. We both thought it turned out great. Then, I sprinkled the shrimp with cajun seasoning from Wildtree, and dredged in a mixture of cornmeal and flour. I heated up light olive oil in a pot and fried the shrimp in batches of 5-6. I don’t think I have ever deep fried anything, so I was a little nervous my method wasn’t going to work. But the shrimp turned out great, and then I got to pour the extra oil into my recycling can (I find that exciting). We ate the po boys with leftover soup, and we are having more tonight! I am still working on the meal plan for the week, and I may skip posting this time because I’m going to be busy getting ready for grandparents coming to town!


Shrimp po boy

Fried shrimp

remoulade sauce

Shrimp po boy

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