christmas eve in michigan

I orchestrated Christmas Eve dinner tonight. Here’s what we ate (courtesy of

Braised lamb shanks with coriander, fennel and star anise, served on a bed of wilted spinach alongside butternut squash risotto. We drank a Maison Louis Latour 2006 Pinot Noir that was pretty decent. For dessert we had orange, spiced walnut and dried cranberry salad and almond shortbread (recipe below), and soon I’ll be making a spiced hot chocolate with almond milk (hopefully it turns out!). I love good food! 🙂

Almond shortbread (adapted from a discussion feed recipe – see post #5)
1 c. butter or margarine, melted (I used Earth Balance)
2 c. gluten-free flour blend (I used 1 c. brown rice flour, 1/2 c. tapioca flour, 1/4 c. each almond flour and sorghum flour)
1/2 tsp. xantham gum
1/2 c. sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp. almond extract

Melt the butter and add the dry ingredients, mixing well. Add the vanilla and almond extract, then chill for ~30min in the refrigerator. Roll flat between two sheets of parchment paper, then cut into whatever shapes you like; I cut the dough into squares and sprinkled some almond slivers on top. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until golden brown at 350 degrees. Cool & enjoy!

About LynnaeEtta

I'm an Usborne Books & More Independent Consultant who loves reading, exploring nature and the city with my kids, cooking, photography, and spending time with family and friends.


  1. Want to reiterate how delicious lamb shanks are… just experienced them for the first time recently. I do not doubt that your recipe outdoes the version I had. Keep experimenting with the cooking Lynae, I think it is great fun and I am sure you are well on your way to being a gourmet.

  2. LynnaeEtta

    Thanks Chris! I'll do my best. 🙂

  3. LynnaeEtta

    My brother the loquacious one.

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