If you are stuck in a rut of preparing the same recipes for holiday meals and parties, do we ever have some suggestions for you!
Below you will find five menu ideas that should get those taste buds watering! All of these recipes fall under the category of ‘savory’ as they are made with umami-rich ingredients like meat, cheese and mushrooms.
Take your pick from a cheeseball holiday appetizer, a crockpot noodle soup, a classic veggie side dish and two tempting beef entrées.
We hope you, your family and your guests enjoy these savory recipes!
Aunt Sue’s Smoky Cream Cheese Ball
- 8 ounces cream cheese
- 6 green onions
- 1 12 ounce package dried chipped beef optional meat: prosciutto
- 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon MSG monosodium glutamate
- 3 ounces walnuts chopped
- 1 12 ounce package buttery crackers
Allow cream cheese to soften at room temperature for about 20 minutes.
Finely chop green onions and dried beef.
Mix the onions, beef, Worcestershire sauce, MSG and softened cream cheese thoroughly.
Form into ball; roll ball in walnuts. Serve immediately with crackers or wrap in plastic wrap and chill until serving.
Crockpot Chicken Noodle Soup
- 2 lbs chicken pieces skin removed
- 2 quarts water
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 1 teaspoon MSG (umami seasoning)
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1 leek or medium onion chopped
- 1 carrot chopped
- 2 stalks celery chopped
- 1/4 cup fresh parsley chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon marjoram or basil
- 1 bay leaf
- 6 ounces dry noodles
Place all ingredients except noodles in the crockpot.
Cover and cook on low for 5 to 6 hours.
Remove chicken and bay leaf from pot; remove meat from bones, dice, and return to broth; add the noodles. Throw away the bay leaf.
Cook another hour or until noodles are done (about 1/2 hour on high).
Cauliflower and Broccoli Au Gratin
- 1 10-ounce frozen broccoli
- 1 10-ounce frozen cauliflower
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1½ tablespoon flour
- 1/4 teaspoon each seasoned salt and pepper
- 1/8 teaspoon MSG (umami seasoning)
- 2 cups hot milk
- 1/4 cup chopped onion
- 1 jar pimentos 2 oz., drained
- 3/4 cup Cheddar cheese grated
- 10 soda crackers crushed
- paprika to taste
Cook vegetables as directed. Drain and pour into 2 quart casserole dish.
Melt butter on stove. Stir in flour and seasonings, stirring until smooth.
Remove from heat, stir in milk. Replace on heat and stir over low heat until thick.
Sprinkle onion, pimento and cheese over vegetables; pour sauce over all.
Top with crackers and paprika. Bake at 350 degrees F for 45 minutes.
photo credit: by Fir0002 - Own work, GFDL 1.2, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=5772317
Bacon Meat Loaf
- 2 lbs . ground beef
- 1 pkg. dry onion soup mix
- 1/2 c . warm water
- 1½ cups Italian seasoned bread crumbs
- 3/4 c . ketchup plus 1/4 c. for basting
- 1/2 teaspoon MSG monosodium glutamate
- 1/2 teaspoon beef bouillon granules
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder or 1 Tbsp. chopped garlic
- 1 green bell pepper chopped
- 1 large sweet onion chopped
- 1 can condensed tomato soup
- 3-4 strips uncooked bacon
Mix dry onion soup mix with warm water; set aside for five minutes.
Combine ground beef with all of the other ingredients (except for the bacon and the 1/4 cup ketchup).
Form into a loaf in a large square baking pan or make two loaves in smaller bread pans.
Lay the bacon slices across the top. Baste the top with remaining ketchup.
Bake 1 hour at 350 degrees F. Occasionally baste with ketchup/drippings during cooking if desired.
photo credit: https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=474856
Beer Braised Tenderloin with Mushroom Gravy
- 1 Tbsp . vegetable oil
- 2½ lbs . beef tenderloin roasted trimmed and tied
- 1 tsp . MSG monosodium glutamate
- freshly ground pepper to taste
- 2 Tbsp . butter divided
- 1 cup onions sliced
- 1 cup mushrooms sliced
- 1/4 cup vinegar
- 1 tablespoon dried tarragon
- 1 cup beer
- 1/2 cup vegetable stock
- 1/4 cup sour cream
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Season beef generously with MSG and pepper. Set aside.
Heat vegetable oil in a heavy roasting pan over two burners over medium-high heat. Place beef in pan; brown meat on all sides.
Remove the partially cooked meat from the pan.
Reduce heat to medium and stir in 1 tablespoon of butter, the onions and mushrooms. Cook until onions are soft and translucent, about 3 minutes.
Add the vinegar, dried tarragon, beer and stock to the pan and stir to remove all the bits stuck to the pan.
Return the meat to the pan and cover with heavy-duty aluminum foil. Cook for 1 hour in oven, until a meat thermometer reads at least 130 degrees for rare; cook slightly longer if desired.
Remove from oven and allow the meat to rest on a cutting board for 10 minutes before slicing. Stir the sour cream into the mushroom pan sauce and heat on low; serve sauce with the sliced meat.