What Christmas Looked Like

26 Dec

Christmas for us consisted of lots of family, baking, traveling, cooking, hosting, photographing and, let’s not forget, eating!  Between three families and three big dinners (and breakfasts!), we took in enough gingerbread and cinnamon sugar to last us…at least…until the end of the year!

Christmas Eve Eve we hosted some of my family at our house, and I got to try out a pernil (Puerto Rican dish of slow cooked pork roast – recipe below!).  It was a success, and with rice cooked by my Aunt Hilda, the plantain casserole made by my cousin Yvette and the surprisingly good tamales purchased from Trader Joe’s, we had a complete and delicioso holiday meal. Not to mention sugar cookies, fig and walnut cake from my sister in law and this:

(This is a rice krispie treat turkey covered in chocolate!  Thanks Bernadette!)

The sugar cookie recipe came from SugarLaws.  The icing was just powdered sugar, almond milk and vanilla extract.  These were a hit, and we had fun decorating them!  This will be my go-to recipe for sugar cookies from now on.

The cinnamon rolls (and the resulting countertop full of flour, sugar and butter) recipe is from the Pioneer Woman.  I’ve made them before, and they are so sinfully good!  Very easy to make – just a little time consuming – and people are really impressed when you make them 🙂  This might become a Christmas tradition in our household.

Christmas Eve we headed to Asheboro, NC for more family time and more good food, including a three-bean salad that I will be featuring on the blog soon!  My husband’s aunt and uncle live in a beautiful house with an amazing view of the foothills.  It gave me an opportunity to test some new settings on my new camera!

Christmas day took us to another family gathering in Roxboro, NC, where we had some great southern staples like sausage balls and country ham biscuits!

At the end of the weekend we had way too many sugary leftovers and a worn out dog (in a new Christmas sweater).

Time to detox and get ready for our New Years resolutions!!

Until then, here’s my pernil recipe.  You could eat this straight up with some rice or stuff it into a taco shell or serve it on a bun.  It’s so good, and so worth the wait (10-hour cooking time)!

Carla’s Pernil

  • Pork shoulder or “Boston Butt”
  • Half onion
  • Half bell pepper
  • 1 bunch cilantro
  • 8-10 cloves of garlic
  • 2 packets Sazon (find in Goya section of grocery store)
  • 1/2 tbs cumin
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1-2 tsp cracked black pepper
  • 2-4 tbsp olive oil
  1. Remove excess fat from pork.
  2. Stab with knife repeatedly to make several holes into the meat of the pork.
  3. Place all other ingredients (except olive oil) into a food processor, and pulse until everything is chopped.
  4. Drizzle in olive oil while food processor is running until it forms a paste.
  5. Rub paste all over pork and into the holes.  At this point you could let this marinate for up to two days or place it right into the slow cooker.
  6. Place pork and all remaining paste into the slow cooker and cook on low for 10 hours.
  7. When the meat is very tender, remove from the slow cooker into a separate baking dish and shred.

3 Responses to “What Christmas Looked Like”

  1. Karen December 26, 2011 at 11:57 pm #

    It looks like you had a wonderful Christmas. I love pork and this sounds very much like the way I make it. Have a great New Year.

  2. Kim December 27, 2011 at 1:00 am #

    Sounds like an amazing family food filled holiday! I’m loving the bigger pictures too!

  3. JEN October 4, 2012 at 3:51 am #

    Tell me more about the rice krispie treat choco turkey! Thanksgiving is coming up 🙂

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