As you plan your Christmas menus, I wanted to share three new recipes for Christmas Eve dinner ideas. These are easy to make and delicious!
It’s always nice to have something new to add to the holiday menu. These recipes are keepers that may very well become a holiday tradition on your table.
Three Christmas Eve Dinner Ideas
I love cooking special dinners for my family on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. Some of my menus are yearly traditions, such as Italian food on Christmas Eve, but I am always looking for ways to add creativity to my dinners.
Today I am sharing three fun ideas for Christmas Eve Dinner and I hope you will try them!
Christmas Salad with Persimmons and Pecans
This Christmas salad is a perfect blend of sweet and savory and is packed with fruits and veggies. I cut the persimmons horizontally so that you can see the festive star but of course you can cut yours however you like.
I love the little burst of sweetness and sourness that the pomegranate seeds give as well as the tartness from the green apples. The sugared pecans are one of my favorite things to add to a salad and I love the way the parmesan cheese adds a salt component.
I add edamame to all of my salads, it’s a great way to sneak an extra serving of green vegetables into your day and the taste is so mild, it doesn’t detract from any type of salad. I also serve this salad as a meal by adding sliced chicken. So many options!
You will want to bookmark this recipe, if for nothing else, the Balsamic Fig Dressing recipe. Oh, my gosh, this salad dressing is amazing!
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The star in the persimmon is such a wonderful surprise that so many aren’t even aware of. If you cut the persimmons as ween below, you can feature the lovely star in your salads.
How to Make the Christmas Salad
The steps to make this salad are all described in the recipe but look how easy this is. I can tell you that sugar-coating pecans on the stovetop are one of the best ways to make an unbelievable salad. Even if you don’t make this recipe, you have to make these nuts. And you can us almonds, walnuts, or pecans.
This salad tastes great and it looks amazing.
- 1 Bag Spring Greens
- 2 Green Apples, cored and diced (peel on)
- 3 Persimmons, sliced horizontally so that you see the star, peel removed
- 1 Cup Ready to Eat Edamame
- 1/2 Cup Pomegranate Seeds
- 1/2 Cup Sugared Pecans (recipe below)
- 1/4 Cup Shaved Parmesan (optional)
- Balsamic Fig Dressing
- 3/4 Cup Olive Oil
- 1/4 Cup Balsamic Vinegar
- 1 Tbl Dijon Mustard
- 1 Tbl Chopped Garlic
- 2 Tsp Fig Jam
- 1 Tsp Sea Salt with Herbs de Provence
- Sugared Pecans
- 1/2 Cup Shelled Pecan Halves
- 2 Tbl Granulated Sugar
- Salad Assembly
- Add spring greens to a large salad bowl
- Sprinkle diced green apple onto greens
- Sprinkle edamame onto greens
- Layer persimmon slices onto greens
- Sprinkle sugared pecans onto greens (optional)
- Sprinkle shaved parmesan onto greens (optional)
- Salad can be prepared ahead, covered and chilled until ready to serve (same day)
- When ready to serve, dress with the Balsamic Fig dressing to taste
- Sugared Pecans
- Add pecans to a frying pan over medium heat
- Add sugar to the pan and stir
- Once the sugar begins to melt, reduce the heat to low and stir constantly. Do not leave the mixture unattended as sugar burns quickly if not tended
- Once the sugar is completely melted and the nuts are coated, turn the heat off and remove the coated nuts to parchment paper or foil to cool. If you leave them in the pan, they will harden and stick to the pan
- Balsamic Fig Dressing
- Whisk together oil and vinegar
- Add garlic and whisk until blended
- Add Dijon mustard, whisk until blended
- Add salt and herbs, whisk until blended
- Add fig jam, whisk until blended
- Adjust to taste
- Dressing saves up to a week
Spiced Apple Cider
Have you ever made Spiced Apple Cider? It’s warm, sweet, and so delicious! It’s also a perfect beverage to serve in the evening when your family is gathering by the fire to enjoy Christmas Eve. (Or anytime, actually!)
It’s also really easy to make spiced cider and your house will smell amazing while cooking.
The ingredients are minimal and include apple cider, fresh cranberries, oranges, cinnamon sticks, pumpkin pie spice, and ginger.
All you do is add everything to a pan and simmer for about thirty minutes. How easy is that?
And speaking of a pan, how wonderful is this pan? I absolutely adore it and it’s so fun to use. The link is below.
- 6 cups of apple 2ider
- One orange, sliced thinly
- 1/3 cup fresh cranberries
- 4 cinnamon sticks
- 1 tsp pumpkin spice
- 1/2 tsp cloves
- 1 tsp crushed ginger
- Pour all of the ingredients into a pot and simmer for 30 minutes.
- Serve while warm.
I adapted this recipe from my beloved banana bread recipe. I am lucky enough to receive Harry & David pears at Christmas and one year gave this adaptation a try.
To say it was a huge hit is an understatement. It is wonderful for breakfast, toasted with a little butter, or warmed for an afternoon snack with a cup of tea. It is also incredible, warmed, and crumbled-over vanilla ice cream with a little caramel drizzle for dessert.
- 5 pears, peeled and diced (½”-¾”-ish)
- 2 TBL butter
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 2 tsp vanilla
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 2 eggs
- 2 cups of flour
- 2 tsp baking soda
- 4 TBL ½ and ½
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees
- Prepare a loaf pan with non-stick spray.
- Peel and dice the pears.
- Using a saute pan large enough to hold all of the diced pears, melt the butter. Add vanilla and cinnamon, thoroughly combine
- Add the peeled and diced pears to the butter, vanilla, and cinnamon mixture. Cook until pears are softened and the pear juice has added liquid to the pan. Depending on how ripe your pears are, this can take as little as 10 minutes or as long as 20 minutes. Put a lid on the pears as they cook to capture all of the juice
- Once pears are browned, softened and juicy in the butter mixture, set aside to cool.
- In a large bowl, blend together the brown sugar and 2 eggs. Make sure there are no lumps from the brown sugar.
- Add the cooled pears and juicy butter mixture to the bowl with the brown sugar and eggs. Thoroughly combine.
- Add flour, baking soda, and half and half to the mixture and combine thoroughly. The mixture will be quite wet.
- Pour the mixture into a prepared loaf pan.
- Place the loaf pan onto a cookie sheet in case of seepage and place it on the middle rack of the oven. Bake for 30 minutes.
- Reduce heat to 300 degrees and bake for another 40-45 minutes or until the knife comes out clean.
Depending on how ripe or unripe your pears are, step 4 can take as little as 10 minutes or over 20 minutes. I have used jarred pears before and they work beautifully!
Make sure to cool the pear, butter, and juice mixture before adding to the brown sugar and egg mixture so that the warm pear mixture doesn't cook your eggs!
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