Easy and Elegant Life

The Search for Everyday Elegance and the Art of Living Well.

Christmas at Home

Style Court did such a wonderful post on Christmas traditions and it got me thinking that I might let you suffer a few recollections of Christmases Past in my family.

My parents made me swear to stay in bed until the sun was up. Then my Dad would throw on a robe and slippers and head downstairs to make coffee and set up the camera while I waited in agony upstairs on the landing or in my room…. That first glimpse of the tree all lit up and piled with presents always made me shout “he’s been here!”

Im looking forward to seeing how my very young two are going to react this Christmas. I plan to put on the coffee, set up the camera and get the Christmas music going. I usually wear a Santa Hat for the distribution of the gifts.

But it’s the night before that’s become the focus for the festive Mrs.E and me.

Christmas Eve used to entail dinner and a dash to Midnight Mass at St. James’s down the street. The choir is magnificent, the church resplendent and seeing the parishioners all dressed for the celebration is very affecting. But we got out of the habit when we had children. To begin with, staying up until midnight is rough since my son gets up before dawn….

We did keep one tradition alive. Christmas Eve we dress for dinner and always prepare something obscenely decadent for supper. Last year it was Beef Wellington, the year before a crown roast, and before that a goose with stuffing and trimmings. This year, in a nod to my Louisiana heritage, the always surprising Mrs. E. has ordered a Turducken… which should be interesting. I’ll pick up the bûche de noël on the 24th.

After dinner, we retire to the library, crank up the electric holographic fire, turn on the carols and swig champagne while opening one present. It is the last moment of calm for a number of days.

On Christmas Day or New Year’s Day I make breakfast. But how do you follow up the feast from the night before?

Easy and Elegant Soft Scrambled Eggs in Puff Pastry:
Serves 2.

2 -4 eggs
2 oz of Lobster meat
1 knob of butter
1 roma tomato
truffle oil
A couple of dashes of sherry
1 scallion
Premade puff pastry shells
Dollop of caviar (I’m using paddlefish)
Dollop of lightly sweetened whipped cream or sour cream(opt.)
Salt and pepper to taste.

Warm the premade puff pastry shells and the plates you’ll be serving on.

Mince the scallion, chop the tomato and sauté both in the truffle oil.

Heat another small pan and melt some butter into it. Add the lobster meat and a dash or two of sherry and heat through. Add the scallion and tomato mixture to the pan.

Whip the eggs in a bowl until frothy. Pour into the pan with everything and scramble until they are just beginning to set. You are aiming for a soft scramble that is very moist.

Spoon eggs into the puff pastry, garnish with chopped parsley, sprinkle with salt and pepper. Add a dollop of whipped cream or sour cream and top with a bit of the caviar. Two long chives sticking up in the eggs also looks rather festive.

Yes, it’s finger-licking good. And, no, we don’t dress for breakfast. Yet.

7 thoughts on “Christmas at Home

  1. First, dare I admit that I have never eaten Turducken? Although, it’s something I have always wanted to try. And your recipe for scrambled eggs sounds completely decadent but absolutely divine! Merry Christmas!

  2. Wow–you do it up right! I love the idea of an elegant Christmas eve. We usually go to the candlelight service with my family and then my husband get to open one gift to each other. I may have to make your egg recipe as a present! Thanks for sharing your traditions.

  3. A pleasure to share life’s little pleasures. They really make all the difference in the world.

    Stay tuned for Turducken commentary…. I admit to a little trepidation. It’ll be a first for me, too.

  4. Hi… should I tell you that I learned how to cook with Paul Prudhomme and we made turducken about 20 years ago? I spent a lot of time in Opelousas learning to cook and working on the PBS show “What’s Cooking in America” with Pierre Franey. We did the opening sequence with Buckwheat Zydeco!

  5. Gahhhhh! Wow. There went the last bit of my composure. I ate at K Paul’s in NOLA in the 80’s (?) I can only imagine your experiences! PBS, and Buckwheat Zydeco, too?! A life well-lived.

    I’m just grateful that I don’t have to debone a turkey….

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