Marc and I took down the Christmas decorations this past weekend (well, Marc did, while I baked delicious flourless peanut butter and chocolate chip cookies, which will be posted soon).

I always hate taking down the decorations because I love Christmas. What can I say…I am a huge sucker for twinkle lights and kitsch. Our apartment was full of both. Luckily, we have a few holiday memories to tide us over until next year!

On December 30th, we hosted the annual “Girls” Christmas party. The “Girls” part refers to my Niagara Falls ladies (boys are allowed). We have been holding annual Christmas parties since were were 15. Back then we had our mothers make the food (spoiled).  After high school we started to cook our own dishes ,so dinner included a variety of our specialties.  Now, 15 years later (yes, I just dated myself), we have upgraded to a turkey feast.

Marc and I volunteered to make a turkey and the others brought the rest. We bought a 15-pound organic turkey from Rowe Farms on Roncesvalles (it was the smallest size they had).  They ordered it in fresh and made sure it was ready for us on the morning of he 30th. There prices are pretty steep, so I think next time we would shop around before we make our purchase.

Marc had his mind set on covering our turkey in bacon, so we started googling recipes and settled on an impressive (but unhealthy) recipe from Gordon Ramsay’s website, which primarily consists of butter and bacon. We made a few changes as the recipe called for 1.5 cups of butter and we ended up only using .5 cups of butter…more than enough.  We also used organic bacon, which was so delicious. The accompanying gravy recipe was the best ever!  We did, however, thicken it with a rue and left out the walnuts.

I also made cranberry sauce. I used this tasty recipe from Oh She Glows. I had never made cranberry sauce before, but I willnever buy canned cranberries again. It was so easy and delicious.

The whole dinner was amazing. So much so, that we all had problems deciding on what to get seconds of. Carly also had the sommelier at Hillibrand (where she works) pair our dishes with wine. We had a variety of sparkling sauvignon blanc from Niagara, a viognier from France and a 10 year old port.

The menu consisted of:

Endive stuffed with Goat Cheese, Candied Walnuts, Orange and Chives

Chiabatta Stuffing with Walnuts and Bacon

Roasted Potatoes with Olive Oil, Garlic  and Herbes de Provence

Steamed Green Beans with Lemon Juice and Lemon Zest

Roast Turkey with Lemon, Garlic, Parsley and Bacon

Homemade Whole Wheat Bread with Rosemary (we forgot to take a photo of it, oops)

Spicy Chocolate Cake

Candied Pecans (we don’t have a photo but they were the same ones that Jason did for his engagement party)

The night was fantastic as always!