Yesterday, we posted the first part of Chapter 4 of The Christmas Tree Treasure Hunt on the Pix-N-Pens blog. Today, we've posted Part Two.
Chapter Five was written by the winner of our Christmas Tree Treasure Hunt chapter contest, Marji Laine. She has posted part one of her chapter over on her blog, and she'll post part two tomorrow. Here's her favorite Christmas Memory and Recipe.
by Marji Laine
Christmas is one of my favorite seasons. It’s so hard to choose just one memory. The best part of the holiday is spending time with my family. Laughter, singing, delicious food, and thought-filled gifts make this holiday so special. But a few years stand out in memory. One was the year before I married my sweet hubby – yes, taxing the gray cells to remember that far back. I went with his family to Kansas and we traveled back down to Dallas on Christmas day, reaching my mom’s house late that evening. That year, my mom had outdone herself with gift buying, requiring us to create an assembly line, singing the whole time moving the presents from under the tree into the family room where we had enough room to open them. After a couple of hours unwrapping packages, we snatched some sleep and rose pre-dawn to drive to Red River, New Mexico for a few days of skiing, ten of us in all. The best part about the holiday wasn’t the gift-opening, though that was fun. The best part was spending a solid week together; singing, laughing, skiing, snow-mobiling, and just enjoying each other’s company.
I'm taxing my brain for a good recipe to share. We do have yearly dishes: Apple Crumb Pie, Pumpkin Bread, Green Bean Casserole, and Deviled Eggs. Most of them are short-cut dishes - I'm so not a cook! But I have been taught to make a dynamite stuffing that I love.
1 loaf of stale bread
2 cups of celery - chopped
2 cup onion - chopped
1 stick of butter
1 tsp each of salt, sage, pepper
2 tsp of parsley - chopped
Step 1: (We usually do this step in front of a movie!) Pull the bread into half-inch to inch-sized squares. I've since been taught that this is called cubing, but it was always pulling to me.
Step 2: Melt butter in the microwave with celery and onion on high for 3 minutes (cover while cooking). Stir and repeat until celery is tender.
Step 3: Blend seasonings into the celery/onion mixture and add the egg, beating it all together. Fold in the bread, stirring it well so that the mixture is fully absorbed and the vegetables are evenly spread through the bread. It will be rather dry. No worries. The juices from the bird are what make this work.
Step 4: Stuff it inside your turkey cavity and cook as directed. If you want to bake this as a casserole, press the bread mixture into a dish, then pour a full cup of chicken stock over the top of it to let it soak in and saturate. Cover with aluminum foil and bake at 350° for an hour.
Mmmm! I love it with turkey gravy, but it's moist enough to eat without. I'm not sure how many it officially serves, but we have 10-12 at our place and all of us eat on it - rarely leftovers.
Marji is a home-schooling mom of four with the oldest at UT Dallas. When she can't indulge in her passion for story-telling, she's transporting teenage volleyball players, teaching writing classes at a local co-op, and directing the children’s music program at her church. She loves acting in musical comedy, has directed many stage productions, leads a worship team, sings in her church choir, coordinates high school classes for a large home-school group, scrap-books, crochets, and designs Love Story books for newlyweds. She invites readers to unravel their inspiration, seeking a deeper knowledge of the Lord’s Great Mystery that invites us all. You can find her hanging around her website, Facebook page, or you can follow @MarjiLaine on Twitter.
Find her on the web:
Grace takes delivery of a package and her life is turned upside down by nine sealed mystery envelopes from her late grandmother. Grammie’s instructions require Grace to take the journey of her lifetime, not only to far off places, but also into the deepest parts of her heart. As she follows the trail laid out for her and uncovers her family’s darkest secrets, Grace is forced to confront the loss and betrayal that has scarred her past and seek the greatest Christmas Treasure of all.
Chapter One by Joan Campbell - Part One, Part Two
Chapter Two by Ruth O'Neil - Part One, Part Two
Chapter Three by J. A. Marx - Part One, Part Two
Chapter Four by Deanna Klingel - Part One, Part Two
Chapter Five by Marji Laine - Part One, Part Two
Marji's the Featured Guest today at Magnificent Hope's Christmas Party! Come on over and join the fun!