13 December 2008

A Progressive Christmas Dinner

Last night was our small group's 2nd Annual Progressive Christmas Dinner. It was so much fun! If you've never participated in a progressive dinner, you should definitely plan one with your family and friends. It's a fun way to spread around the party responsibilities and also get to see others' Christmas decor!

You can have as many stops/courses as you want; we had three last night. Our first home hosted appetizers and finger foods. We had ten couples participating, so three of them provided the first course (the host home couple and two more). I took a few pictures at this stop of people enjoying themselves~and of the hosts' great decal phrases on their walls.
(I snuck into the master bedroom to take this just because I loved it!)

The second home hosted the main entree. It was delicious! We had deep-fried turkey, corn casserole, sweet potato casserole, salad and rolls (five couples provided this course). Their home also looked beautiful. She had the tables decorated with candles and magnolia leaves~I loved that! And I'm sorry to say that I was enjoying myself so much (and the fact that the kiddos were at the sitter's) that I completely forgot to take pictures at this stop. I'm so aggravated about that! Oh well...

The final home was ours. We hosted the dessert course and also the gift exchange was at our house. The ladies exchanged ornaments and the guys exchanged dvd's ($5 spending cap!).

For dessert we had Red Velvet Cake and No-Bake Chocolate Souffle with coffee and hot cider (my hubby & I and one other couple provided this). Yummy!

Red Velvet Cake
(from a church cookbook from Hamilton, OH)

1/2 cup butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 eggs
2 (oz.) red food coloring
3 Tbls. cocoa powder
2 1/4 cups flour
1 cup buttermilk
1 tsp. vanilla
1 tsp. vinegar
3/4 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda
Preheat oven to 350F. Cream butter and sugar together; add the eggs. Make a paste with the food coloring and the cocoa; add to butter mixture. Alternately add the flour and butter milk; mixing well. Finally, add the vanilla, vinegar, salt and baking soda. Pour into two greased & floured cake pans. Bake 35 minutes for 9" pans or 25 minutes for 8" pans.

Frosting for Red Velvet Cake:

1/2 cup flour
1 1/2 cups milk
1 cup butter
1 cup sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
Boil (on medium heat) flour and milk together until very thick (until it's difficult to stir). You must stir this constantly or it will scorch. Set aside to cool, but continue to stir it every few minutes so that it doesn't get lumpy. Cream butter, sugar and vanilla together. After the flour mixture has completely cooled, add it to the butter mixture. (If you add it before it cools, it will melt the butter and your frosting will be runny). Frost cake and enjoy!

No-Bake Chocolate Souffle
1 envelope (1 Tbls.) unflavored gelatin
1/4 tsp. salt
1 1/2 cups milk
2 oz. (2 squares) unsweetened chocolate
3 egg yolks, slightly beaten
3 egg whites, beaten stiff with 1/3 cup sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
Mix gelatin, salt and milk in the top of a double-boiler. Add chocolate. Cook over hot water (not boiling) until chocolate is melted and gelatin is well dissolved. Blend with a whisk. Pour mixture slowly over egg yolks, stirring constantly. Return to double-boiler and cook 3 minutes. Cool 10 minutes, then add vanilla. Fold egg whites into chocolate mixture and spoon into a 1 quart mold or souffle dish. Chill 2-3 hours. Serve topped with sweetened whipped cream.

It was a lovely evening!


JanMary said...

Oh it is quite a few years since we had a progressive dinner party, but there are always great fun (or craic as we say here - not the drug though!)

Looks like a great evening, and great chance to see more christmas decor in other peoples houses!

Hootin' Anni said...

Now this sounds like one heckuva lotta fun!!! And the exchange of gifts with a limit is perfect...a perfect way to end a great evening.

I will have to remember this and try it out. Can be done year 'round for special occasions or 'just because'!! Great!

Betsy said...

This looks like so much fun! I saw those wall decals in a magazine not too long ago. Years ago I did one the old fashioned way...handwritten and painted...I love the one above their bed. What does the one on the red wall say? It's beautiful!
Red velvet cake is so Christmas-y!

Song Lee said...

Hey, looks like you guys had a good time. Which house had the "True love story never ends"? I feel like I've seen it.

Lora said...

Betsy~ the quote on the red wall says *Together is a wonderful place to be*

Song~ it's Adam & Brittaney's house

Angela said...

Looks like a wonderful evening! And I love that cake plate with the bow on top!

Michelle M. said...

That looks fantastic! The desserts look so delicious. Good job!

Nana Trish is Living the Dream said...

I've never participated in one of these, but heard of them for years. I used to love entertaining, but haven't in so long. It seems as though my career took a different turn 20 years ago and now I don't get to fellowship as much as I'd like. Maybe someday if I retire. Your place looks so neat.

Kari said...

Glad you got a whole cake this time! =) I really like the "writing on the wall," too! Been thinking about trying it here.

Jamie @ Purposeful Pursuit said...

How fun! It sounds like a wonderful evening.

imelda said...
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