So, how do you celebrate the new year?
Once in awhile we'll have someone over, but more often you'll find the six of us ringing out the old year quietly...if you count playing a game of Mexican Train Dominoes quiet!
We have a tradition of setting out snacky foods and grazing all night.
Well, at least until 10:00 or so. When we lived in the eastern time zone, we'd stay up and watch the ball drop in Times Square, but it loses a little of its punch when you're watching it two hours after the fact!
I like to try a new snack food sometimes to help mix things up, and this year I found a winner. I'm sure you're all familiar with these pinwheels. I've seen them in the deli cases at supermarkets, and they're always a hit whenever someone brings them to my son's office potluck.
In fact, it was after this year's potluck that my son asked me to try making them. So I searched online for a recipe, found a few, changed things up a bit, and came up with a treat I couldn't resist!
Here's the recipe:
Black Forest Ham Pinwheels
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
1 tablespoon minced onion
1 teaspoon dill weed
1 teaspoon horseradish (not horseradish sauce - get the real stuff)
8 ounces deli-style Black Forest Ham, sliced thin
|I know this says "1 lb family size" - I made two batches and used it all.|
This is so easy. First, mix the cream cheese, onion, dill weed and horseradish in a small bowl. Taste a smidgen, and add salt and pepper if you want. Remember that the ham is also salty, so you want your cream cheese mixture to be on the un-salty side.
The next thing to do is to lay a piece of plastic wrap down and lay a tortilla on top of it (you'll thank me later).
Spread some of the cream cheese mixture on one tortilla, thick enough to cover it, but not too thick. Lay slices of the ham in a single layer all over the tortilla. Then roll the tortilla up from one edge (not the plastic wrap - yet). Roll it fairly tight, but you don't have to be a bully about it.
Now wrap the plastic wrap around it and set it aside. (This is where you'll thank me! Just try tearing off a piece of plastic wrap while you're trying to keep your tortilla from unrolling.)
Repeat until the cream cheese is all gone.
Refrigerate the rolls for at least two hours. When you're ready to eat them, unwrap them, and cut in 1/2-inch sections. (Let your minions snack on the ends).
Like most recipes, you can change this up to suit your own family. Here are some ideas for variations:
*Add dried cranberries to the cream cheese (leave out the horseradish for this one!)
*Use turkey instead of ham, or roast beef, or pastrami.
*Use nuts and dried fruit, and leave out the meat altogether.
*Add fresh chopped mushrooms.
*Add a layer of Swiss cheese on top of the meat.
The variations are only limited by your imagination!
We're planning to start our New Year's Eve celebration tomorrow night after daughter Carrie gets home from playing in the symphony concert. This year's concert sounds like fun - it's a Beach Boys tribute with a band called "The Kahuna Beach Party". (She's been humming Beach Boys tunes all month.)
We'll get the dominoes, set the snacks out, and spend the rest of the evening trying not to get too many points!
What are your New Year's Eve plans? Are you festive, or quiet? How do you like to ring out the old year?
And, of course, we must end with some gratuitous puppy pictures! This was Thatcher's first Christmas, and he did okay with the presents under the tree...as long as they didn't contain food of any kind!
(By the way, don't forget to head over to Seekerville tomorrow for the big New Year's bash! Readers and writers alike will have tons of fun...and there will be prizes!)