Remember those wonderful holiday dinners at your grandmother's house and the tantalizing smells that filled the air in her kitchen--fresh vegetables seasoned to perfection, delicate fruits bubbling through delicious pie crusts, and tender turkey seasoned with herbs from her own garden?
If she was anything like my grandmother, cookbooks lined one corner of her kitchen and she had dozens of boxes crammed full of index cards, newspaper and magazine clippings, and scraps of paper with recipes on them, most of which she never used. Each time she added a new one to her collection she swore that she would make it someday. Of course, there was the occasional church social or family picnic when she actually dusted one off and used it, but for the most part they remained archived in the cabinet above the stove.
My grandmother, like most grandmothers, preferred to cook by taste and from memory. Nothing was ever measured or weighed; no set instructions ever followed.
Today, I seldom even make Kool-aid that I donít read the instructions first. Okay, maybe Iím not that bad, but I do rely heavily on the printed guidance of others. My mother often tries to tell me how to make some of the favored dishes that I grew-up loving. Unfortunately, she subscribes to the same cooking theory my grandmother did - a pinch of this, a dash of that, and cook until it looks ready.
For those of you who are as culinarily challenged as I am, Iíve put together this collection of great holiday recipes you can use to wow even the toughest critic at your table. And when your mother asks you how you made them, just tell her, ďOh, you know, a pinch of this, a dash of that, and cook until it looks ready.Ē Donít worry, I wonít tell if you wonít.
Honey Glazed Turkey
Wild Rice Stuffing
Holiday Mashed Potatoes
Festive Sweet Potatoes
Green Beans and Roasted Peppers
Spinach Salad in Fresh Orange Dressing with Pine Nuts
Pumpkin Pie with Streusel Topping