Recipes for Your First Holiday Dinner Dish

For the last month you have been trying to convince your mother to let you cook something for Christmas dinner. You aren’t sure what to make but you know if you mess this up you will be stuck bringing paper plates and cups for the rest of your life! Have no fear! Here are three dishes that are guaranteed to get you a reserved spot on the holiday menu for years to come!

Chef El’s Leafy Greens w/ White Wine & Garlic

A new spin on the traditional preparation of Greens. No need to slather green vegetables in boiled pork fat to make veggies palatable. These greens will make you cut your eyes at your mother like an Atlanta housewife. We can make all of our traditional foods in new, heart healthy ways without adding sugar or animal fats. Who would have thought that you could make a vegan soulfood dish that would knock the socks off of even the toughest home-cook.

This recipe works great with hearty greens like Kale, Chard and Collards

Serves 4 to 6

3 to 4 bunches of cut and washed leafy greens

1 Medium white onion (thinly sliced)

2 tablespoons Coconut oil

1 healthy pinch chili pepper flakes Or Cayenne

¾ cup white cooking wine

2 to 3 cloves fresh garlic minced

1 container Baby Portabello Mushrooms sliced (optional)

Salt and Pepper to taste


-Over medium heat, in a large skillet or frying pan, sweat  half of the the sliced onion, half the garlic and half of the pepper flakes in the coconut oil.

**if you are including the mushrooms, add an additional tablespoon of oil and add the mushrooms to the skillet with the onions and garlic**

-After about 5 minutes, add as many greens that will fit into the skillet. Wilt these greens by folding them onto themselves.

-Once the greens have reduced by about half, increase the temperature to medium-high add the remaining greens, onions, garlic, pepper flakes and wine.

-Continue to fold the contents until the wine reduces; once reduced lower temperature to medium-low; at this point you can add salt and pepper to taste making sure to wash your fork between tastes.

The Singing Chef’s Southern Comfort Peach Cobbler

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Everybody I know loves when I cook, except one person. My grandmother. She doesn’t trust anybody cooking. Mindful this is a woman that made us eat Top Ramen and cut up hot dogs and called it Old Soba

Since I moved back to Louisiana I have been stuck in the plates and cups zone.  Grandmother even tried to walk me through heating up a precooked ham. “Courte, you can’t do it like that… you gotta wrap it in foil so it stays juicy…” Can you imagine a grown woman going through that every time she got close to a stove?

Not too long ago my sweet tooth got the best of me and I wanted to bake. When I was done I knew that I had struck gold. I made a peach cobbler that was out of this world and guess what? Grandmother can’t make peach cobbler! I actually got the original recipe out of my great grandmother’s recipe box and as I was trolling the internet found another recipe and meshed them together to make this quick, easy and tasty treat. Do you want to get out of the plates and cups zone? Well follow this recipe. Even your auntie that hates on everything can’t hate on this.


½  stick of butter

1 280z Can of peaches in heavy syrup

4 cups sugar

1 ¼ cups of water

1 hefty tablespoon of cornstarch

1 ½ cups of Self-rising flour

2 teaspoons of vanilla extract

½ teaspoon cinnamon


Preheat oven to 400 degrees

In a saucepan combine the peaches (undrained), 1 cup of sugar and ½ of water. Bring to a boil.

In a small bowl, combine ¾ cup of water and the cornstarch. Now add this to your peach mixture. Return to boil.

In a mixing bowl, combine 1 ½ cups of sugar, self-rising flour, vanilla extract and enough milk to make a thin batter. Make the batter a little thinner than a pancake batter.

In a 13×9 baking pan place butter in the oven to melt. Allow to melt but don’t let it start to turn brown.

Pour hot peach mixture in the pan with melted butter. Pour batter all over peach mixture.

In a small bowl, combine ½ cup of sugar and cinnamon.  Sprinkle on top of the batter.

Bake for 30 minutes or until golden brown.

Your batter will not be the hard flat crust you are use to. It will be fluffy and kind of rise like a little cake. Enjoy sugars. You’re welcome

Chef Stacy’s The Decadence

I call it that because if you take a little extra time with it you will be a hero at the BBQ, the dinner party , or the inevitable work potluck.  Folks will strive to be your friend and stay on your good side just in case they want to experience this thing ever again.  Heck you could even pick up some side money making it!


Caramel Chocolate Trifle

     1 package (9 ounces) devil’s food cake

     2 packages (3.9 ounces each) instant chocolate pudding mix

     1 carton (12 ounces) frozen whipped toppin

     Homemade Caramel Sauce Recipe or 1 jar (12-1/4 ounces) caramel ice cream topping

     1 package (7-1/2 or 8 ounces) English toffee bits or almond brickle chips

Start by picking up a box of devil’s food cake mix. You could use brownie mix if you are in a pinch. The only difference is it will be a lot more dense then the devil’s cake would. After you make it once you will know which way suits you better. Follow the box directions and then  Cut cake into 1 and  1/2 inch cubes. Place half of the cubes in a trifle bowl or large glass bowl. Next add a layer of whipped topping. Then add a layer of chocolate pudding(which you also made or bought premade from a store). Then top with caramel sauce. And finally sprinkle with English toffee bits. Repeat the layering until the bowl is full.

Cover and refrigerate until serving. Yield: 16 serving – if you use a 3qt bowl.


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