Christmas Eve is my BIG deal--always has been. Often I've hosted my entire family, done "theme" dinners with many courses, etc. I love it, and don't mind the massive amount of planning and work.
This year, though, it's just the four of us (husband, and my home from college 22 yr old daughter and my 18 yr.old daughter. ) I still want to have a magical Christmas Eve--after all, everything still looks gorgeous, the house is till clean, anticipation sparkles in the air--but both daughters have expressed the desire to "not make a big deal" and "let's not just stuff ourselves all night."
Pooh. No fun.
Anyway, I'm scaling way down to No Cook or make head nibbles for a buffet: probably just pate, Scottish salmon and brown bread, plain old shrimp cocktail (boring but everyone loves it), a baked brie en croute, champagne, and cookies. BUT what to serve along with all this protein/starch that doesn't require that Ma be out in the kitchen, apparently "working" and "spoiling the fun"? A big salad's out, as we're having that with our prime rib for Christmas Dinner the next day.
I'm drawing a blank. Sliced pears and clementines; fine...but not a green vegetable, which I really crave. Given the Frenchified nature of much of the menu, I want to avoid a pasta salad thing...What can you suggest? What either require little prep time or can be made early in the day and still be palatable?