23 October 2021

Weekend Cooking: 2021 Christmas with Southern Living

Cover of 2021 Christmas with Southern LivingEvery year the editors of Southern Living magazine publish a beautiful hardcover book full of decorating ideas, menus, recipes, count-down calendars, and checklists to help make your holiday season run smoothly. Though the focus is clearly on Christmas, the menus and recipes could work throughout the holiday season, from Thanksgiving to New Years.

I've been a huge fan of Southern Living recipes for years, so my favorite part of 2021 Christmas with Southern Living is the entertaining section, and today I'll be reviewing the cookbook and recipes. Thanks so much to Abrams and the Abrams Dinner Party for the review copy of this beautiful book.

The book 2021 Christmas includes menus for a Thanksgiving feast, a holiday breakfast, an informal winter dinner, and (of course) Christmas dinner plus a meal that incorporates that dinner's leftovers. The book also provides recipes for sides, salads, and cold-weather mains, and ends with sweet treats of all kinds that you can serve at home or give as gifts.

Photo of appetizers from 2021 Christmas with Southern LivingI cooked quite a few recipes from this book and had great success each time. I love the look of the Shaved Radish Toasts, and they are incredibly delicious; in fact, it was hard to stop eating them! The Orchard Mule was refreshing and the perfect cocktail to go with (even if I don't own copper mule mugs). Note that we upped the vodka percentage the next night. By the way, Southern Living notes that the drink makes a good mocktail as well. (See the recipe below.)

I've marked several of the bread recipes to try this winter, including Cloverleaf Sichuan-Scallion Buns and Christmas Morning Orange Rolls. I'm notoriously bad at making biscuits, so I was surprised that the Honey-Buttermilk Biscuits were winners. I'm definitely making them again.

For a main meal, I made Stovetop Black Beans with Chorizo, which was spicy and warming. The Chicken Thighs with Parsnips and Oranges was easy and full of flavor. I served the chicken over a bed of mashed sweet potatoes to round out the fall flavors. The Saffron Veal Stew (I used beef) was so, so good. I served it over wide egg noodles, though rice or even mashed potatoes would work too.

Photo of buttermilk biscuitsI'm looking forward to trying some of the dessert and cookie recipes as we get into the holiday season. My neighbors and friends always appreciate home-baked goodies. I'm sure I'll turn to 2021 Christmas for cocktails and nibbles inspiration for cozy winter evenings with friends.

Recommendation: For those of you who love new ideas for Christmas decor and help organizing for the holiday season, 2021 Christmas with Southern Living has your back. If Christmas isn't your thing, you should check this book out of the library for solid recipes that will serve you well all winter. Vegetarians will find suitable dishes, though vegans should look before buying.

Orchard Mule
Photo of appetizers and cocktail from 2021 Christmas with Southern LivingServes 1

  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice (from 1 lemon)
  • 3 tablespoons (1.5 oz) vodka
  • 1/4 cup (2 oz) apple cider
  • 1/3 cup (4 oz) ginger beer
  • Apple slice
  • Rosemary sprig
Combine the lemon juice, vodka, cider, and ginger beer in an ice-filled copper mug. Stir. Garnish with an apple slice and a rosemary sprig for stirring.

Make it a mocktail: Increase the amount of apple cider and ginger beer to replace the vodka.

Note: Recipe used with permission; all rights remain with the original copyright holder. The photos are my own.

Shared with Weekend Cooking, hosted by Marg at The Intrepid Reader (and Baker)


gluten Free A_Z Blog 10/23/21, 7:36 AM  

Southern Living always has such wonderful ideas, tablescapes, and recipes. Years ago I used to subscribe to their magazine. Thanks for sharing about their Christmas Hardbound book. Your platter and presentation of the shaved radish toasts look beautiful and appealing. Normally, I would think it strange, but it looks so good, I think I'll try it.

Melynda@Scratch Made Food! 10/23/21, 10:45 AM  

I am sure I need to try the shaved radish toasts! I have grated large (and spicy) radish to use in roast beef sandwiches and that is quite tasty.

Mae Travels 10/23/21, 11:08 AM  

The thought of a whole shelf of Christmas cookbooks (as you implied) is a bit overwhelming. Even one book seems like a lot of ideas. I admit that we have pretty much the same Thanksgiving dinner every year with my family, whichever house we go to. After all, we only make the dishes ones every 12 months! Ad we often travel at Christmas. So such a book wouldn’t be my thing.

best… mae at maefood.blogspot.com

rhapsodyinbooks 10/23/21, 12:09 PM  

I definitely need to seek out this book if for no other reason than the Christmas Morning Orange Rolls! Thanks for telling us about it!

Jackie McGuinness 10/23/21, 12:12 PM  

We like mules but I haven't broken down and bought the copper mugs but have been tempted.
Shaved radish toasts - pinned, sound delicious.

(Diane) Bibliophile By the Sea 10/23/21, 3:05 PM  

Southern Living books are great and this Christmas one looks like one I need to check out.

Tina 10/24/21, 8:51 AM  

Southern Living is a staple where I live as you might imagine! I’ll check this one out of the library. Their recipes are usually spot on and the decorative displays are lovely.

Marg 10/25/21, 5:16 AM  

I love the idea of a Christmas cookbook but....I never do the Christmas Day cooking, and we always, always have the same meal every year. It would still be nice to look at though.

Sherry's Pickings 10/26/21, 7:50 AM  

wow i bet that mule has a kick! :-)

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