Since we celebrate both Christmas and Hanukkah at the Noble Pig household the holidays are already in full food swing.
Last night was the first night of the eight days of Hanukkah and the feasting began.
Someone bring the elastic pants over now! Eight days of this with Christmas sandwiched in the middle is definitely going to wreak havoc on the waistline. Oh well.
Here’s how we celebrated last night, with food of course…
We started with our favorite salad, Mixed Green Salad with Pears, Goat Cheese and a Fig Vinaigrette. The dried figs and a good quality balsamic vinegar knock this salad out of the park.
I served the salad with Potato-Sour Cream Biscuits. These are so easy to make, no yeast is involved and they are yummy.
For the main course, Beer Braised Beef Brisket. I braised the brisket for three hours in stout beer and beef stock on top of a bed of mirepoix (diced onions, carrots and celery). When it finished cooking, I strained the broth and added red wine vinegar and tomato paste to punch up the sauce. Beurre manie (French “kneaded butter”) was added at the end to thicken the sauce. The result…perfection. Melt in your mouth meat with tremendous flavor.
On the side, Noodle Kugel. Oy. This is my all-time favorite. I’m telling you, with the crispy-sugary top and the creamy inside, you have to make this. Put this on your holiday table, no matter what you celebrate, and it will be requested every year. I promise.
Yes, we did have some veggies, Lemon-Roasted Green Beans with Marcona Almonds. This is a bit of twist on “green beans amandine”, remember that? Except this uses Marcona almonds from Spain, which are my favorite. They are more tender than California almonds and are sold roasted and salted. I love them and I love this side dish.
This over-indulgent meal was enjoyed with an exquisite Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon from the Montona series of reserve wines, produced by the Andretti Winery. Yes, Mario Andretti, the race car driver, has a winery, and it’s beautiful, a Tuscan Villa in the middle of the California wine country. I bought this bottle there several years ago and have been saving it for a special meal. Tonight was the night.
Let me just say, it was incredible. It had all the characteristics of Napa Valley Cabernet I love; tobacco, spices, cedar and vanillin. Why did I not buy a case of this?
We also had The Wild Boar’s Favorite Cake for dessert. I will post more about that later.
And for those of you enjoying the Christmas season, here are some tree trimming shots…
I have lots of these gumdrop snowflakes in varying colors, I love how realistic they appear, like real candy.
This is a handmade violin or is it a cello? Either way it’s beautiful?
And here’s my crown, I hang it on the tree when I’m not wearing it.
For tomorrow’s Hanukkah meal…
Tangerine Glazed Carrots
Latke’s (potato pancakes)
Roasted Asparagus with a Honey-Citrus Dressing
Orange Cardamom Cake and Sufganiyot (Donuts normally filled with jam, mine will be with chocolate)