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The 12 Days of Christmas.

 

I have never cared all that much for this Christmas song. Of course, it is better than Grandma Got Run Over By a Reindeer and all. But that’s not saying much.  It is long and really, when you think about, it is kind of dumb. Geese and swans and cows would make a bit of an uproar not to mention quite a commotion would be created with all them critters running all over the place. And the mess. Who is going to clean up after the 12 days? That’s the burning question of the season for me. 

Then in 2006 that all changed when a friend forwarded an email with a you tube video of a version of the song by a group called, Straight No Chaser.

I was captivated. Me and twelve million others!!!  The you tube video went viral.

In case you are not familiar with the group, there are really two Straight No Chaser groups. Wikipedia can give a better explanation than I can.

Straight No Chaser (SNC) is the name of two related but separate a cappella men’s singing groups.

The Indiana University amateur college group now known as “Indiana University’s Straight No Chaser” is composed of 10 to 12 undergraduate men whose lineup changes every year.

The professional group, known simply as Straight No Chaser, is composed of former members, mostly original members, of the college group.

In 2006, a 1998 video of “The 12 Days of Christmas,” went viral and subsequently led to a five-album record deal with Atlantic Records in 2008. The YouTube video has been viewed by more than 12 million people…………….

With that introduction and without further ado, ladies and gentlemen……………                                                                                                                          

                                                                                                                                           Bravo. Bravo!! Bravo!!!!  Well done gentlemen!

This week I am running a Best Of More Thyme Than Dough series. I begin with this popular recipe.
Featured Recipe      Mushroom and Swiss Crostini

This delightfully delicious and easy recipe comes from Tomcat and Kitty in the Kitchen.

Makes 12 crostini.

Recipe can be doubled or tripled.

If using as finger food on a buffet you can cut the crostini in half or into thirds to make 24 or 36 pieces.

Or you can make a dinner of them by serving with a salad as pictured at the end of the recipe.

This is what you will need:

A baguette or two or bread of your choice

4-5 medium mushrooms

1 tablespoon butter

2-3 green onions

1 small garlic clove

2 teaspoons white wine*

6 tablespoons heavy cream

4 slices baby Swiss cheese

Bacon bits**

NOTES:

*If you do not want to use wine, substitute chicken broth.

** I don’t use bacon bits.  I made my own with fresHere is what you do:

With a brush or a lightly damp cloth wipe the mushrooms clean and slice and cut the slices in half.

Clean and slice the green onions.

Also, mince your garlic.

Preheat the broiler.

Melt the butter and sauté the mushrooms over medium heat for a few minutes. Then add most of the green onion, reserving  a few for garnish.

Add the garlic and continue to stir and cook. 

Add the wine to the pan and cook until it evaporates. It is best to do this over low heat.

While you are waiting for the wine to evaporate, you can begin slicing your cheese. (You can use store bought shredded Swiss instead if you wish.)

This is how I cut the cheese.  Pile and line it up.

Then slice matchstick size slices.

Then cut those sticks into little pieces.

By now the wine should be nearly evaporated. Poof!!!! It is like magic. The wine just disappears. But it leaves behind it’s wonderful flavor in the mushrooms and onions. Right now it smells so wonderful in my kitchen I could eat the mushroom mixture straight out of the skillet right here and now!!!

Although tempted to eat the mushrooms soaked in wine right this instant, I control the urge. So, I remove the mixture from the pan and set aside.

Let the pan cool. When the pan is cool add the cream and place over very low heat.

Once the cream begins to warm, add the cheese……………

…………………and stir until it begins to melt and begins to thicken.

When the cream mixture is starting to thicken, return the mushroom mixture and the bacon bits to the pan and stir into the melted cheese mixture.

Remove pan from heat and let the mixture slightly cool.

Lightly toast one side of the bread slices in your broiler or toaster oven.

NOW THIS STEP IS IMPORTANT: I had never done this until I made this Tomcat and Kitty recipe. It makes all the difference in the world. It makes the Crostini easier to bite into, yet you still get the crisp toast feel too.

Flip the toast over……………………

…………and spread the mushroom mixture over the toast slices.

Return them to the broiler and broil until lightly browned.

Remove and sprinkle with the reserved green onion.

Bon Appetit!!!

Cost 

2 baguettes                              $2.50

4-5 medium mushrooms            $0.45

1 tablespoon butter                   $0.15

2-3 green onions                      $0.24                            

1 small garlic clove                   $0.03

2 teaspoons white wine             $0.22

6 tablespoons heavy cream        $0.72

4 slices baby Swiss cheese        $1.24

Bacon bits                                $0.50

Total Cost = $6.05
Cost per person = $1.51

Quote of the Day

I will honor Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year. 

Charles Dickens

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