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Menu Plan for Winter I: Week 3, Wednesday

Christmas Day Dinner or Christmas Lunch For 4
Smoked Salmon Salad
Glazed Ham with Mustard Sauce
Maple Glazed Sweet Potatoes
Brussels Sprouts with Chestnuts

Cooking time:  1 1/2 - 2 hours for menu       Cooking schedule: see below for instructions

      This menu is for 4 - or 2 with leftovers.  The vegetables and potatoes can be done ahead and reheated.  The mustard sauce can be done up to a week in advance. We'll be having Pan-Seared Foie Gras.... But, I realize that it's not to everyone's taste and/or easy to get. The recipe is here. 

Smoked Salmon Salad

Total time: 10 minutes
     If you are buying the shrink-wrapped, dry-smoked kind 1 package should be enough.  If you are buying the moist, European kind that is pre-sliced, paper thin, you will want 2 - 3 slices per person depending on how big the slice.

Smoked Salmon Salad Ingredients:

 Instructions:

Roast Ham with Mustard Sauce

Total time: 1 hour 45 minutes 
      A fully cooked ham should be baked to an internal temp of 140F (60C), about 20 minutes per lb. A ham that must be cooked should reach an internal temp of 150F (65C), 35 minutes per lb. for small hams and 22 minutes for larger (over 5 lbs) hams.  All times assume a 325F (165C) oven.

Roast Ham Ingredients:

 Instructions:

Mustard Sauce

  Time: 10 minutes
    A timeless tradition in my large, extended family.  The original recipe came from "The Anderson House", a small family run hotel in my home town. For some, it's the only reason to have ham!  Can be made ahead.

Roast Ham with Mustard Sauce Ingredients:

 Instructions:

Note:  if you don't have a double boiler, put a metal bowl on a saucepan partially filled with water.  The bottom of the bowl should not touch the water.

Maple Glazed Sweet Potatoes

Total time: 60 minutes 
     These are not overly sweet - no mini-marshmallows.  The taste of the sweet potatoes shines through and is enhanced, rather than overpowered, by the maple.

Maple Glazed Sweet Potatoes Ingredients:

 Instructions:

Brussels Sprouts with Chestnuts

Total time: 50 minutes
      This is a classic on British holiday tables and slowly moving to American tables.

Brussels Sprouts with Chestnuts Instructions:

 Instructions:

Cooking Schedule: 2 lazy hours
Assemble all ingredients and utensils
Utensils: measuring cups, spoons, knives,
small bowl, roasting pan, meat thermometer, baking
dish, foil, 2 medium saucepans with lids, double boiler
or saucepan and metal bowl, small saucepan, carving
board, medium bowl, small bowl, whisk

Turn oven on 325F (165C), arrange 2 shelves
Start to bake ham
Peel sweet potatoes, slice
Cook sweet potatoes
   Prepare chestnuts if using fresh
Open jar, rinse and drain chestnuts if using canned
Make mustard sauce, cover, refrigerate
Trim sprouts
Cook sprouts
Make glaze for sweet potatoes
Remove sweet potatoes, drain
Layer sweet potatoes, glaze in baking dish, set aside
Make glaze for ham
Remove sprouts and keep warm
Prepare salad greens if needed

  Everything under control? Do a bit of kitchen clean-up
  Pour a glass of Christmas cheer, enjoy the day

Remove ham, fuss if needed, pat on glaze
Return ham to oven
Remove salmon from fridge to warm up
   Another break, 15 minutes
Bake sweet potatoes - same temp as ham is fine
Make vinaigrette
Add vinaigrette to salad, toss
Arrange salad, salmon on plates
Sprinkle with capers, olives
Remove ham, cover and let rest
Serve salad, relax, toast the holiday!
Done?
Melt butter for sprouts and chestnuts
Add thyme, pepper, chestnuts and sprouts to butter
Sauté until heated through
Slice the ham... Don't forget the mustard sauce!
Remove potatoes
Serve all... 

                     MERRY CHRISTMAS!