We caught up with Ten Dollar Dinners hostess, Melissa d’Arabian, to chat about her holiday plans. We asked her 10 rapid-fire questions to help us get to know her holiday personality.
For a holiday drink, eggnog, apple cider or hot chocolate?
Hot chocolate! I love to serve it with homemade flavored marshmallows.
Christmas breakfast or Christmas dinner?
Dinner. I love a long dinner at the holidays, relaxing and catching up with family while the kids are playing with their presents.
Ham, beef or lamb?
Beef. There’s nothing like a perfectly done beef roast. I’ve perfected the art of cooking even an inexpensive cut of roast (the recipe’s in my cookbook, Ten Dollar Dinners).
Are you a fruitcake fan?
Sugar, chocolate chip or gingerbread cookies?
I’ll have to defer to my four girls on this one — sugar cookies, because they are an open palette to all frosting colors.
Evite or invite?
Invite. We have our annual Mother-Daughter Holiday Tea every year and the invitation is the first step in setting the tone for the party.
Favorite holiday song and movie?
Andy Williams’ “It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year” from his Christmas album. I grew up listening to it and playing it at mother-daughter teas with my own mom, so it brings back memories. When it comes to holiday movies, How the Grinch Stole Christmas! — love that Cindy Lou Who. I have four of my own little Cindy Lou Whos at home!
Open gifts Christmas Eve or Christmas Day?
During Christmas Day. How else would we explain Santa arriving?
Christmas at home or away this year?
Philippe and I treasure being in our own home surrounded by our four girls. Every few years, though, we travel to the south of France to spend the holidays with my in-laws. I do love attending Christmas services in the church where we were married — it’s a 12th-century stone church, so it’s always freezing.
Favorite holiday-season tradition?
Our annual Mother-Daughter Holiday Tea, a tradition my mom started when my sister and I were young and that carries on to this day in her memory. We just had our 22nd tea on December 8. My girls and I look forward to it all year. And it’s a chance to make my Potato-Bacon Torte, which has also become a tradition.
Still shopping for gifts? Melissa d’Arabian is wrapping up her helpful tips and family-friendly recipes into one must-read cookbook, Ten Dollar Dinners.
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