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Holiday Dinners at Sea: Cruise
by Linda Coffman
create a festive holiday atmosphere on
Silversea Cruises' Silver Shadow
Don't cook your own holiday
goose (or turkey or ham)...
Who says you have to go over the river and
through the woods to grandmother's house for a perfect holiday dinner? That's
the American Dream version, but even my husband will agree
that my grandmother's holiday dinners were a bit eclectic. Not only did she
serve the usual turkey, green bean casserole, and canned cranberry
sauce with the lid indentations still visible, but she also prepared ethnic dishes like lefse, dubbed 'soggy bread' by non-Norwegian in-laws, and lutefisk, which defies description.
Unfortunately, my mother didn't have a cooking
gene to pass along to me. I was in college the first time Mom 'prepared' a
holiday dinner... she took the rock-hard turkey out of the freezer and popped it
into the oven at dawn. So far, so good, but she was puzzled that the bird didn't
have giblets. Well it did. But she didn't realize they were packaged in a
plastic bag that was still inside the frozen turkey. Which wasn't exactly
roasting on schedule. With everything else done for an early afternoon feast,
the turkey's "pop-up timer" hadn't budged. Uh-oh. Amid hysterical laughter we
gave up on the raw turkey, piled into the car, and headed for what had always
been our Thanksgiving tradition—dinner reservations.
serves turkey and the trimmings
Since reaching adult womanhood,
two of the scariest words in the
English language to me are Holiday Dinner and I cringe at the thought of
following in my mother's footsteps. How DO my peers manage to put everything together
to serve a festive meal all at once? They make it appear effortless. But it's
just not possible in my kitchen where the
major food groups are packaged, canned, frozen, and (my favorite) RESERVATIONS.
There must be other women like me—who keep the phone book in the oven and are utterly challenged when it comes to
culinary arts. Surely they also long for something more special than a poinsettia-decorated
buffet at the local haute hotel restaurant of the moment.
of the Ultimate Reservation
Don't get me wrong.... almost any reservation is a Good Thing and certainly preferable to a
bird pre-basted with an anonymous petroleum substance and served with
instant mashed potatoes and packaged stuffing mix on the side. But one has to be very selective when it comes
to reservations. After much trial and error, I can assure you that all reservations
are not created equal.
the bird on Silversea Cruises' Silver Shadow
It should come as no surprise that
I consider a cruise the ultimate reservation. Think about it... what could be better?
Not only can the entire family gather together for the holiday (be it
Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah, or Kwanza), but no one has to grocery shop, set the table,
cook, clean up, OR wash the dishes. Perfect!
And what's for dinner on your cruise ship? If you
guessed turkey, go to the head of the class! And not just any turkey...
juicy, mouth-watering roast Tom turkey. On Celebrity Cruises' ships it comes
accompanied by stuffing, sweet potatoes, and a yummy baked apple, while on
Silversea Cruises' Silver Shadow a chestnut stuffing, cranberry relish, and
rosette of sweet potatoes complement the time-honored bird of choice.
Traditional Thanksgiving turkey dinner on Silversea Cruises'
The Picky Eater
In every family there is someone who isn't fond
of turkey, who gets seasick at the sight of a quivering fruit-filled Jell-O salad, and who suffers
through holiday dinners with an air of false cheer. For them and others with
palates, cruise ship holiday menus feature a variety of selections not usually available on
grandmother's table. For Thanksgiving, chefs on Silver Shadow offered not only turkey, but also
Grilled Swordfish Filet, Roasted Veal Rack Loin, and Spiced Roast Filet of Beef
Tenderloin. Vegetarian entrées included Pancakes with Creamy Spinach filling
and Linguine Pasta with Tomatoes.
Pie a la Silversea
One of the most unique
Thanksgiving dinners afloat has been the annual "all pumpkin"-themed menu available on
Cruises' ships. Princess culinary artists designed the holiday meal to use the traditional
gourd favorite in unconventional new ways. Every dish features
pumpkin, but the style of presentation and preparation varies. Main courses
include roasted Vermont turkey, served with pumpkin polenta; broiled filet of
orange roughy with pumpkin risotto; center cut pork loin chop with pumpkin
spaetzle; and grilled medallions of aged beef tenderloin with sautéed pumpkin
rosti. Even appetizers, salads, and desserts feature pumpkin. "Healthy
choice'' and vegetarian items are also available. If traditional pumpkin pie
doesn't float your boat, how about pumpkin Crème Brûlée?
Tom Turkey from
Courses: A Culinary Journey
Courses: A Culinary Journey
memories with friends and family members is one of the rewards of cruise travel.
Naturally, every past passenger mentions the food! Princess Cruises makes
it possible to share not only the recollections of those incredible meals, but the
actual memorable dishes served on
Compiled by their expert chefs, the Princess cookbook Courses: A Culinary
Journey includes recipes for their most frequently requested dishes and
signature delicacies. Not only are the illustrations beautiful, but the recipes
include ingredients that are readily available in almost any supermarket. Best
of all, the preparation steps are explained in terms that even novice chefs can follow!
For your holiday dinner, serve Roasted Young Tom Turkey with Bread-Fruit
Stuffing and Glazed Sweet Potatoes. Princess Cruises has generously allowed
CruiseDiva.com to share these recipes on the following printable pages...
Greet your guests with refreshing and festive...
Some family traditions should be preserved; therefore, in addition to the
above dishes, I'll honor my grandmother by also serving canned cranberry
sauce complete with the ubiquitous lid indentations... and, yes, I will never
forget to thaw the turkey!
Courses: A Culinary
Journey © 2002 Princess
Cruises is available for purchase on all Princess Cruises' ships throughout the fleet
Images © CruiseDiva.com &
Guide & Cruise
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