Q&A: Holiday menu ideas?

Question by Hi-D: Holiday menu ideas?
i’m haveing trouble finding a good menu for about 10 guests for a christmas party, i’m thinking ham, some wild rice….that’s kind of all i have, i’m not sure what will go well together, it’s formal also, which makes it kind of tough, but i don’t want the meal to remind people of thanksgiving, and i also have to think about the vegetarians, anyone have any ideas? anything would help really, thanks alot

Best answer:

Answer by bobi
Maybe a fresh ham (pork roast) or a couple of full loins? They’d go well with wild rice, a black bean side dish, deviled eggs, stuffed mushrooms, baked onions, baked squash, other veggies, chutneys, and some type of whole grain rolls or bread.

If you’re set on a cured ham, they are usually salty even after soaking/scrubbing/roasting and are best paired up with a couple of naturally sweet dishes like roasted sweet potatoes or baked yams, roasted turnips or parsnips, peas and maybe a composed fruit salad. Something tart, like fresh cranberry sauce, is good, too, or maybe a baked green apple dish?

I think as long as you’re not having turkey, there is a small chance of being reminded of Thanksgiving. If you’ve any cookbooks with a menu section, look through them for ideas or ask someone who has done a lot of cooking that you know for others. I try to choose dishes that can be done ahead of time so I can also spend time with my guests without a lot of last minute fussing. Enjoy your holiday party!

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6 Responses to Q&A: Holiday menu ideas?

  1. P.J. says:

    just give em TV dinners

  2. hitchnj says:

    I would make either a cinnamon apple sauce or pineapple sauce to go with the ham (on the side).. sweet potatos are a must with ham.. my family would expect potato salad with ham too.. and some steamed veggies and salad with fresh bread or pillsbury crescent rolls.. we just aren’t rice eaters so it seems odd to me..

  3. Sorabh says:

    food , enjoyment

  4. professor grey says:

    Sounds good so far. Maybe some glazed carrots for a veggie, they always go well with ham. Another idea, since you have vegetarian guests is to have lasagna instead. You can make a traditional lasagna and then a vegetarian one. I personally like a roasted red pepper lasagna. A big garden salad, hot bread and butter, a glass of wine, and an Italian dessert like canolli’s or the classic Tiramisu.


    6 eggs
    1 lb. mascarpone cheese, don’t use substitutes
    36 Savoiardi (lady fingers)
    2-1/2 cups strong Italian coffee
    1/2 cup dry Marsala wine
    13 Tbsp. sugar
    3 Tbsp. un-sweetened cocoa

    1. In a large bowl use an electric hand mixer to beat the egg yolks together with the sugar until fluffy.
    2. Add the mascarpone cheese and mix it in with a spoon until well combined.
    3. Now whip the egg whites until stiff peaks form and then fold them gently into the mascarpone mixture using a spoon. Fold it in by gently lifting the mascarpone mixture from the bottom to the top.
    4. Add the cocoa to 1/3 of the mascarpone mixture and mix well.
    5. Spread half of the remaining mascarpone mixture without cocoa onto the bottom of the cake dish (My dish is 11-3/4″ x 8-3/4″ and 2-1/2″ deep).
    6. Quickly dip both sides of the lady fingers into the espresso coffee and place them over the mascarpone cream.
    7. Cover this layer with all the chocolate mascarpone cream.
    8. Add the Marsala wine to the rest of the coffee and dip the ladyfingers into it. Place them over the mascarpone chocolate cream and top with the remaining mascarpone cream.
    9. Sprinkle the top with cocoa powder through a fine mesh strainer.
    10. Refrigerate for 24 hours.

    If you make the recipe for kids you can substitute the Marsala wine with coffee.

  5. kristopher k says:

    Turkey Ham dressing peach cobbler apple pie macaroni cheese corn

  6. Carolsandytoes1 says:


    2 tsp. olive oil
    1 c. chopped onion
    2 tsp. chopped fresh oregano
    4 garlic cloves, minced
    3 c. chopped yellow squash
    3 c. chopped zucchini
    1 c. chopped carrot
    1 c. (about 2 ears) fresh corn kernels
    4 c. chopped tomato, divided
    3 (14-ounce) cans fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth, divided
    1/2 c. uncooked ditalini pasta (very short tube-shaped macaroni)
    1 can (15.5-oz.) Great Northern beans, rinsed and drained
    1 6-oz. package fresh baby spinach
    1 tsp. salt
    1/2 teaspoon black pepper
    1 c. (4 oz.) grated cheese
    black pepper (optional)

    Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onion to pan; sauté 3 minutes or until softened. Add oregano and garlic; sauté 1 minute. Stir in squash, zucchini, carrot, and corn. Sauté 5 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Remove from heat. Place 3 cups tomato and 1 can broth in a blender; process until smooth. Add tomato mixture to pan; return pan to heat. Stir in the remaining 1-cup tomato and remaining 2 cans broth; bring mixture to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer 20 minutes. Add pasta and beans to pan; cook 10 minutes or until pasta is tender, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat. Stir in spinach, salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Ladle soup into individual bowls; top with cheese. Garnish with pepper, if desired. Makes 8 servings.


    1 country style smoked ham
    2 c. water
    20-30 whole cloves*
    1 (16-ounce) can sliced pineapple rings
    1 c. Maraschino cherries, cut into halves
    1 c. brown sugar
    2 tbsp. flour
    Garlic powder
    Onion powder
    Black pepper
    Olive oil spray

    Place ham in roaster. Add 2 cups water, and cover roaster. Bake in a 325 F. oven, allowing about 21 minutes per pound for a large ham, about 25 minutes per pound for a smaller (up to 12 pounds) ham or half ham. If the ham has an exposed bone, cover this with foil. Keep an eye on the ham as it cooks and spray occasionally with olive oil during the first part of the cooking. Continue roasting until a thermometer inserted in center reads 160 F. Be sure thermometer is not touching bone. When ham is done, remove from oven. Lift off rind. Using a sharp knife, score fat surface crosswise (into intersecting squares) and dot with cloves at each intersection.

    To prepare the ham coating, combine brown sugar and flour. Rub this mixture over the scored ham. Sprinkle over lightly with garlic powder, onion powder, and black pepper. Place a pineapple slice on the ham so that one of the cloves will be in the center of the circle. Cover the clove with a Maraschino cherry half. Each cherry half should be placed in the center of a pineapple slice. Continue until ham is covered decoratively with pineapple slices and cherries. Brown, uncovered, for 20-25 minutes in a 400 F. oven or until ham takes on a beautiful glazed coloring. Cut any remaining pineapple slices into halves and use to decorate around the ham at the bottom of the serving plate, alternating with sprigs of parsley or kale for garnish.

    Serve with sweet potatoes, green salad, rolls, and your favorite vegetables.

    *Since cloves are strong, you may want to use less.


    3 tbsp. Vegetable oil
    1/2 lb. Lasagna noodles
    2 Garlic cloves, minced
    1 medium Onion, chopped
    2 Tomatoes, chopped
    10 medium Mushrooms, sliced
    1/2 tsp. Oregano
    1/2 tsp. Basil
    1/2 tsp. Rosemary
    2 tbsp. Chopped fresh parsley
    1 lb. Washed spinach
    1 c. Cottage cheese
    1/2 c. Grated parmesan
    8 oz. Grated mozzarella

    Cook noodles until al dente. Drain and set aside. Preheat oven to 350 F. Heat oil in a large skillet and saute onion, garlic, tomatoes and mushrooms. When onion is translucent, add the herbs. Chop the spinach and add to the skillet. Stir until the spinach is wilted. Continue to simmer. In a large bowl, combine the cheeses, reserving 1/2 cup mozzarella. Pour the vegetables into the cheese mixture and mix thoroughly. Layer noodles alternately with the vegetable-cheese mixture in an 8×13-inch baking pan. Top with reserved mozzarella and bake for 30 minutes. Let sit for 5 to 10 minutes before serving.


    2 large sweet potatoes, peeled, halved lengthwise and cut into 1/2-inch slices
    1 medium acorn squash, peeled, seeded and cubed
    1 large russet potato, peeled, halved lengthwise and cut into 1/2-inch slices
    1/2 lb. baby carrots
    1/2 c. packed brown sugar
    1/4 c. water
    1/4 c. butter or margarine, melted
    1/4 c. molasses
    1 tsp. ground cinnamon
    1 tsp. vanilla extract
    1/2 tsp. salt

    Divide vegetables among four greased 13-in. x 9-in. x 2-in. baking pans. In a bowl, combine the brown sugar, water, butter, molasses, cinnamon, vanilla and salt. Drizzle over vegetables; toss to coat. Cover and bake at 425 F. for 30 minutes. Stir vegetables. Bake, uncovered, for 15-20 minutes longer or until vegetables are tender. Makes 12 servings.


    6 C. fresh Romaine lettuce torn into bite-sized pieces
    1 green pepper thinly sliced
    1 seedless cucumbers, peeled and thinly sliced
    1 small red onion, thinly sliced

    For the Vinaigrette:
    1/3 C. olive oil
    1/3 C. balsamic vinegar
    1 tsp. mustard seed
    1 tsp. oregano
    1 clove garlic, minced
    Salt and pepper to taste

    Place the salad ingredients in a large bowl. Place the vinaigrette ingredients in a jar and tightly seal. Shake well and pour over salad. Toss together and serve immediately. Double the recipe if needed.

    AMBROSIA (Use as a salad or dessert.)

    6 navel (seedless) oranges
    1 pineapple, peeled, cored, and cut into cubes
    1-cup coconut, shredded fresh, fresh frozen, or packaged sweetened
    1 large banana
    Mini marshmallows (optional)
    1 small (4-1/2-ounce) bottle maraschino cherries, drained well

    Peel the oranges, taking care to remove all the white pith. Separate the segments over a bowl or storage container so that you catch any juice, and add the segments to the bowl. Add the pineapple and coconut to the orange slices and gently toss. The ambrosia can be refrigerated up to two days, covered.

    When ready to serve, slice the banana and toss it with other fruits. (Add marshmallows, if desired.) Add the cherries last. Makes 8 servings.

    I hope that I have been of help to you.