Christmas is one of my favorite nights of the year. I think it’s magical. I have always loved it, and loved the ritual of putting the stockings by the fireplace and milk & cookies for Santa. Poor guy he never got a cookie because all my dogs ate them! My tradition is always to have it black tie, I think people love to dress up and one year I said to be more casual and everyone came in black tie anyway. I always wear long-dress, skirt sometimes festive & fun and totally over the top! This year I have one of my favorite all time dresses that my best friends Mark Badgley & James Mischka gave me years ago. an oldie but goody black velvet & huge black silk skirt. It’s gorgeous. The dinner started out to be 6 people and in the morning it became 16 – so I stuck w/my original menu. Roasted Squash Soup, Mushroom Risotto, Salad & Cheese, Rodika’s Buche de Noel, Cornelia Guest Cookies and Ice Cream. It was James birthday a few days before so I made him a gluten free chocolate cake. I was a bit worried about making Risotto for 16 and I always make extra for everyone who works at the house. So it was for 20. It was yummy. The dinner was great, everyone had fun and left at midnight. A magical night – I was thrilled.
Cooking in my dress was easy & fun. I live being in & out of the kitchen. No matter what I’m wearing. I think it is very important as the host to be on top of everything. No matter if I’m cooking or Chef Thomas (our head chef at Cornelia Guest Events). I always am running in and out of the kitchen. I help set the table pick the linens, etc. Entertaining is a reflection on the host. So I like to make sure everything is perfect. I have fabulous people who work for me, they are all amazing so it is a huge group effort always and that makes it fun. We are a big family!
Recipe for Mushroom Risotto
5 cups – Basic Broth
½ cup - dry white wine
3 tablespoons – unsalted butter
1/3 cup –finely minced onion
1½ cups – Arborio rice
2 cups – mushrooms – Any kind you like
¼ teaspoon - Powdered Saffron
1 tablespoon – Unsalted Butter
1/3 cup – grated cheese