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Tue Dec 24, 2019, 10:29 PM

My oven has been on for eight hours solid

Started out after lunch making a pecan pie to give to friends. Then separated six eggs to use the yolks for two key lime pies to take to the family do tomorrow. Then separated two more eggs since my recipe for meringue cookies calls for 4 egg whites and I made two batches - one with peppermint swirl chips and one with mint and dark chocolate chips.

Then used the one egg whose yolk broke while separating eggs, the two extra egg yolks and another egg to make a quiche using chanterelle mushrooms off our farm, bacon, onion, and sour cream.

Then, since the meringue cookies were still a bit sticky, I put them back in for another hour - the instructions say to bake for 90 minutes at 225 F. Now each batch has been baked for 2 and a half hours, and one batch is in for yet another hour.

Everything so far tastes great - but damn this is a lot of work! And I am not even cooking any of the main dishes, just desserts.

Eventually, I need to host one of the holiday dinners at my house and I am dreading it. I don't entertain and am not used to planning meals for more than two people. The idea of planning a meal for 20 or more is terrifying to me!

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Arrow 12 replies Author Time Post
Reply My oven has been on for eight hours solid (Original post)
csziggy Dec 2019 OP
babylonsister Dec 2019 #1
csziggy Dec 2019 #3
leftieNanner Dec 2019 #2
csziggy Dec 2019 #4
CatMor Dec 2019 #5
csziggy Dec 2019 #6
CatMor Dec 2019 #7
CottonBear Dec 2019 #11
CatMor Dec 2019 #12
CaptainTruth Dec 2019 #8
magicarpet Dec 2019 #9
csziggy Dec 2019 #10

Response to csziggy (Original post)

Tue Dec 24, 2019, 10:33 PM

1. You sound so organized!

And you made a ton of stuff. If you had a heads-up, you could plan that meal easily, make beforehand, etc.
You love to cook and it shows!

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Response to babylonsister (Reply #1)

Tue Dec 24, 2019, 11:02 PM

3. I'm organized, but I am tired of being that way

I would love to just be lazy and not have to plan anything. It seems as though every time I think I am ready to let go, something else comes up to make it more complicated.

Yeah, I could handle doing a big meal, especially since the rest of the family would pitch in and bring stuff, too. I just dread the planning that would make it work out.

In past years, I have had excuses - knee replacements, parents dying, house construction. Next year I hope I don't have any excuses, but that means I might have to host something. This is my husband's family, most of whom I do love, but most live at least three hours away from us, in two directions, so my house is the most central. My family no longer has get togethers, though my sister hosts a hot dog cookout for her friends who have no family close. I may go to that next Christmas.

Oh well, I do like to cook - but I can't eat most of what I baked today. I have to go back on my diet - I've been baking bread and have gained weight because it is sooooo much better than store bought.

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Response to csziggy (Original post)

Tue Dec 24, 2019, 10:55 PM

2. You absolutely did the hard stuff

I used to host Xmas Eve for 25 and it was a nightmare. Until I realized that the gathering was about family and there was no expectation of super gourmet. Buy a smoked turkey or a nice ham that is served at room temperature. Assign salad to someone, and maybe a side dish. I also made a double batch of Betty Crocker scalloped potatoes. Veggie platter and cheese and crackers for hors d'oeuvre. Maybe some nice olives. You can totally do it!

Merry Christmas!

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Response to leftieNanner (Reply #2)

Tue Dec 24, 2019, 11:06 PM

4. For the big meals, my husband's family splits things up

Everybody brings a dish or two. With twenty or more, that is a LOT of food!

I may practice with spatch cocking a turkey or two over this year. THe family does not do the whole carve the turkey at the table bit, so cutting it up will be no problem and easier with a spatch cocked turkey. I've done it with chicken so I know how to do it. If I can talk my husband into it, we could try cooking it on the grill, but neither of us have much experience at grilling so we'd need to practice!

As far as the hard stuff, pecan and key lime pies are easy, stir a few ingredients together, pour in a pre-made crust and bake. Meringue cookies are not too bad, with my vintage Kitchen Aid mixer, just take a long time to get "done" so they are crispy all the way through. The last batch is out of the oven and they are perfect!

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Response to csziggy (Original post)

Tue Dec 24, 2019, 11:21 PM

5. Everything you made sounds delicious ...

I'm drooling over the thought of homemade Key Lime Pie, my favorite.
Happy: Holidays

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Response to CatMor (Reply #5)

Tue Dec 24, 2019, 11:27 PM

6. I love key lime pie - and it is very easy to make

1 graham cracker crust
1 can sweetened condensed milk
3 egg yolks
1/2 cup key lime juice (there is a brand Key West Lime Juice that comes bottled)

Mix the milk and eggs together thoroughly, stir in the key lime juice, pour into the pie shell. Bake at 350 F for 15 minutes. Best served with whipped cream.

Pecan pie is almost as easy:
Get a bottle of Karo Corn Syrup, follow their recipe BUT cut the sugar to 1/2 cup, double the vanilla, add 1/4 tsp of salt. It comes out a lot better than the regular recipe, not as sweet but with all the pecan goodness.

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Response to csziggy (Reply #6)

Tue Dec 24, 2019, 11:40 PM

7. Thank you for the recipes ...

I didn't realize the Key Lime is that easy to make. I'm definitely making it next week. I also like Pecan Pie so I'll try that too. Store bought just isn't the same.

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Response to CatMor (Reply #7)

Wed Dec 25, 2019, 10:30 AM

11. Nellie & Joe's Key Lime Juice is the key ingredient!

Let the pie cool for 10 minutes after baking. Then, refrigerate to chill and set. Be sure to save the plastic lid cover from the graham cracker crust. Enjoy!

I make this pie for all family gatherings!

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Response to CottonBear (Reply #11)

Wed Dec 25, 2019, 11:00 AM

12. Thank you for the tip ...hope I can find the juice in my area.

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Response to csziggy (Original post)

Tue Dec 24, 2019, 11:46 PM

8. That sounds like a lot of work! A woman I know made 57 pies for Thanksgiving.


She started making pies for friends years ago & they were so good other people wanted them so she started taking orders, currently at $15 a pie. This year she had orders for 57. She can get 3 at a time in her oven, & bakes each batch for an hour. Do the math.

And no she doesn't have a big fancy kitchen with a Viking oven. She's partially disabled & cleans houses for a living. She just loves baking & making people happy, & bless her for it.

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Response to csziggy (Original post)

Wed Dec 25, 2019, 12:54 AM

9. Sounds absolutely delicious,..

What is your address ?

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Response to magicarpet (Reply #9)

Wed Dec 25, 2019, 04:17 AM

10. I could give you my address, but I won't be here during Christmas Day

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