The Three Meals of Christmas

The tree will be fresh cut, the decorations will be nature or music inspired, the wreath my Grandma made will be hung, the nutcrackers shall increase in number, and books and music will rule the gifts.

While I schedule like a pro, I am not big on planning too far ahead for meals. It’s more fun to think about what I want to eat that day and make it! But, as stores are closed or have limited hours, holidays are a different story. And so, I plan, chat with my favorite butcher at the meat market, and shop accordingly.

Fortunately, it’s really quite easy to create a list of meals for our family’s traditional Three Meals of Christmas. Tradition is the buzz word in that sentence. I am allowed a certain amount of experimentation, but the food tradition basics, just like the decorative elements, must remain the same. I’ve come to terms with this and gradually tweaked the menu to make me happy to repeat it.

Read More

Cranberry Relish


16 oz bag of fresh cranberries
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup orange juice
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 t grated ginger

Spoon Mage™ Notes:

If you prefer, sub in orange zest for the juice and replace the juice with water. Or sub in Grand Marnier for the juice. If you don’t have fresh ginger, use 1/8 t ground ginger. If you really hate sweet relish, reduce the sugar by half, but taste it before removing it from the stove in case you regret that. As long as it is still warm, the sugar will incorporate. Or, if you prefer – use honey or your favorite sugar substitute. Read More

Challah Bread

Throughout the year, Challah Bread is formed into an intricate braid. On Rosh Hashana, it is made round as a symbol of the Circle of Life. You certainly do not have to be Jewish to enjoy this delicious bread. Easily doubled for large gatherings – but do make sure you have a very large mixing bowl! This recipe is courtesy of Carol Osterman.

Makes one large loaf
Prep time: 4-5 hours
Baking time: 1 hour


2 cups Warm (not hot) Water
1 T plus 1 1/2 t Active Dry Yeast
1 1/2 t Sugar
4 Eggs
1 Cups Sugar
3/4 cups canola or vegetable Oil
1 T Kosher Salt
2 1/2 lb plus 1 cup, of Bread Flour
2 egg yolks Read More