Christmas for One: A Tailored Menu of Favorites

Like last year, the 2021 holiday season is one where I largely don’t get to see friends and family.

Fortunately, I paid my closest clanmates a visit last month, when the airlines and airports weren’t quite so… insane? In addition, my best friend stopped by for a few days last week, which definitely gave me a chance to celebrate a bit.

Despite this, however, it can be hard to face the actual “day of” a holiday alone. You have to put forward extra effort to make it special, and sometimes it might not seem worth it.

With a toast to all of you who might share a bit of the holiday lonesome blues, here’s what I’m making this year for a solo Christmas feast. Just thinking about these plans is putting a smile on my face, and I hope it gives you some inspiration, too.

What better way to start off Christmas morning than by satisfying the sweet tooth?

Breakfast: Hot Chocolate Bread Pudding, by Food Network’s Katie Lee Biegel.

My mother and I discovered this recipe several years ago, finding it made a lovely treat to prepare ahead of time on Christmas Eve and pop into the oven the next morning. The family would then wake up to the smells of chocolate and rich, warm spices — adding a dollop of whipped cream on each serving for, as they say, the icing on the cake!

For a smaller batch, I’m doing a third of the original recipe in a loaf tin, but cutting the half and half down to 1/2 cup, dropping the sugar to 1/8 cup, and using two packets of hot cocoa mix. As a final touch, I’m using whole goat’s milk to add a nice touch of sourness to balance the sweet. If I throw in an extra handful of chocolate chips, I doubt I’ll notice the difference. 😊

You could of course have hot cocoa with such a breakfast, but maybe some cold brew spiked with Irish cream might get me going a bit quicker! Maybe with some frothed peppermint cream?

You can make crêpes, or you can be lazy like me and buy them for an occasion like this. Less stress.

Lunch: Florentine-Style Crêpes

I don’t have a recipe for this, more going from my gut and seeing what evolves. “Florentine” style usually involves eggs, spinach and cheese, and I have all of these ingredients plus some store-bought crêpes.

If it works out, I’ll post pictures and the recipe for what I did throw together. Honestly, I didn’t want to worry too much about having a heavy lunch, instead making single-serve options with easy-to-source materials.

Wine pairing? Either bubbles or a light white. I’m selecting a 2015 Soave Classico by Guerrieri Rizzardi that I had squirreled away into my wine stash.

With such lovely and healthy fuel, I might binge the second season of Witcher again… or restart Witcher 3 for the fun of it… who knows? Either way, need hearty provisions for the Trail!

Cheesecake takes a long time. Am I cutting corners? Perhaps. But when it’s just me, who’s gonna know (or care)?

Fun Snack: Chocolate Chip Cheesecake Dip by Angela Naumann

For the sake of my own sanity — and waistline — I’m making only half of this recipe. It really does take less than fifteen minutes to throw together, and it’s super tasty. You could technically eat it with a spoon, but graham crackers are fine, too. Perfect for watching Netflix or catching the final episode of Wheel of Time.

I’m serving this little delight alongside a can of St. Vrain Gingerbread Cider. Gotta have some local representation!

Dinner: Oven-Roasted Rainbow Trout (with this link as a reference) and Asparagus

At the end of the day, I’d like something easy to throw together while I’m on a video chat with my family. I had bought two trout fillets on a whim at the local grocery, and figured it would make an acceptable Christmas dinner. Bonus points if I end up with leftovers!

Though asparagus is out of season, the canned variety works just as well with some spices and a touch of butter.

Since this is a light fish, I might veer back towards a bubbly-style wine, or maybe into a Gamay if I’m craving something red. When pairing wine with fish, you have consider both protein and sauce!

Village-level Beaujolais might be nice, or heck, I think I still have a Viognier (I know, I know, it’s white) from Bookcliff Vineyards that would pair beautifully.

Unfortunately, Viognoer is out of stock for this season if you want to try one, but check out the Bookcliff website for their other fantastic Colorado grown-and-produced wines. They ship to most states!

Create your own dessert? Best way to please anyone and everyone!

Dessert: Make-As-You-Like Dessert Crêpes

Is it considered cheating to use crêpes for two purposes?

Well, if that’s wrong, I don’t want to be right.

Leftover chocolate chips, marshmallows, frozen fruit from the farmer’s market, or even my homemade goat’s milk dulce de leche (a.k.a. “cajeta”) can come together with a bit of microwavey warmth and a hefty dose of whipped cream for a tailor-made ending to Christmas Day.

And with that, I wish you all a happy holiday season. Whether Christmas is your jam or not, I hope that you have a relaxing and warm ending to this calendar year.

Thanks for reading. ♥️

Published by Allie

Foodie explorer with Stardew Valley dreams. Lover of wine but not beer, cheese but not milk, and all things chocolate. Working to learn as many self-sufficient, at-home food production skills as possible.

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