Monday, December 10, 2012

The Countdown Begins

Waiting for the choir to enter.

Music in the hospital lobby.

It's the same every year. I think there is plenty of time to get it all done. And then I'll see an ad somewhere proclaiming "15 days to Christmas!" There is a moment of panic. Then somehow it (mostly) gets done. Part of that has to do with a lesson I learned long ago—keep paring down the "to do" list as the days grow shorter. No one else knows what I had planned to do, so if it doesn't get done, no one is the wiser. 

The music at church yesterday was wonderful. I was one of several musicians who accompanied the choir. All those years of piano lessons were not wasted. The ukulele band played this morning in a hospital lobby for anyone passing by. We have done this before and it's one of my favorite gigs. It's an unexpected bit of cheer where people need it most.

Now I can turn my thoughts to cooking. Our house will be full at Christmas and I'm trying to get a few things ready so that I don't stay in the kitchen the whole time. Tonight I put ham and turkey delights in the freezer. My family loves them. I took a pan to Mommy once when she was in college and her roommates ate them all before she got any! Tonight I made one pan of ham and one pan of turkey. 

These are the rolls I used. There are other brands, but look for something similar.

Assemble the entire thing and then put it back in the pan.
It's easier that way than what you see in the photo.

Once it's back in the pan, cut the individual rolls apart, 
being careful not to cut through the foil pan.


1/2 lb. butter, softened
2 teaspoons poppy seeds
3 tablespoons French's mustard
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
1/2 small onion, minced
1 lb. ham from deli, shaved (or can use turkey)
7-8 oz. Swiss cheese slices (I used 10 slices for 2 pans of rolls)
2 packages dinner rolls

Mix butter, poppy seeds, mustard, Worcestershire, and onion, blending well. 

Split rolls in half. (I do the whole pan without breaking individual rolls apart.) Spread top and bottom with butter mixture. On bottom half, place ham and cheese. Replace top half of rolls. Put the uncut rolls back into foil pan, then cut individual rolls apart. 

Wrap in heavy duty foil. Bake at 400 degrees and bake for 10 minutes. 

You can make these ahead and refrigerate or freeze them. Be sure to label and date if freezing. 

Each pan makes 12 dozen regular size rolls or you can cut them into 24 appetizer size rolls. 

I think we will have these on Christmas Eve after church. The rest of the menu is yet to be determined, but it all needs to be quick and easy. These definitely fit that bill.

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