Upon meeting the Kefi family for the first time, a friend remarked, “Well, you sure don’t come from simple stock, do you?” We’re a spirited, complicated, opinionated bunch more or less made for a reality television show (except, sadly, our schticks are real, not scripted).
This is perhaps most apparent at the Christmas Day meal, when the extended Kefi family gets together and we break bread–except at this table we have at least four loaves: a sugar-free loaf, a gluten-free loaf, an all-sugar, all-gluten loaf, and a loaf of plain, white-ass Wonder Bread. Try the flow-chart below to understand complicated eating patterns of the greater Kefi family at large.
For the past nine years, the Kefi family has celebrated two holidays on December 25th: the birth of Jesus and the annual Extravaganza. My assumption is that you have the skinny on Jesus, His birth, and His life’s work. So, I’ll use this space to tell you about the Extravaganza.
On a snowy Christmas in 2002 (JetSet Kef interjection: “a VERY snowy Christmas”), our family friends (known here as the B’s–and, yes, I know an apostrophe does not indicate plural but Bs looks like a different abbreviation entirely) were scheduled to come to Casa Kefi for dinner. Mama Kef is especially afraid of the snow and called to warn the B’s that they ought to stay home–only to find out that the B’s had already been out all morning searching for an open diner. So, despite many strenuous warnings from Mama Kef, they fought the white-out conditions to attend the Inaugural Christmas Extravaganza.
Ten courses, two helpings, 11 people in food comas, and a viewing of Love Actually later, we realized that the snow had accumulated and getting back home would be impossible for our guests. Luckily, the B’s came prepared with pajamas, and so the extravaganza raged on into the night (and by “night,” I mean until about 830). By the time we woke up the next morning, Grandma B had scrubbed the kitchen floor, Donna B had made the coffee, Lauren had already drank her first cup of coffee, and Grandpa B had his coat on and was ready to go home.
Though we haven’t had a snow-induced sleep-over since, we have maintained many traditions throughout the 8 subsequent Extravaganzas: we don’t dare sit at the table until Mama Kef tells us the seating arrangements; we have Brotherhood Winery Holiday Mulling Wine before dinner (to take the edge off, naturaly); we eat, then we sit, then we coffee, then we sit, then we open presents, then we dessert, then we sit, then we go; we open presents one at a time in a circle; we add a “Christmas Miracle” each year (which is a little bit like the Festivus Airing of Grievances, except more fun and less aggressive; we don’t educate our asses (you read that right); and often we have a group of funny Frenchies join us, just for kicks (JetSet Kef: “No really– they’re French, so it’s funny”).
Today, I bring you this year’s Christmas Miracle: a dish other than salad that every single person at the Kefi Christmas table could eat. It’s meat-free, gluten-free, AND sugar-free corn casserole! Merry Christmas and enjoy!
Meat-Free, Gluten-Free, Sugar-Free Corn Casserole
- 1 cup milk (soy works just as well– but adjust honey if it’s already sweetened soy!)
- 2 Tbsp. cornstarch
- 2 Tbsp. butter (or coconut oil)
- 1 can each whole-kernal and sweet corn, drained
- 1/4 c honey
- 2 tsp. vanilla
- 2 eggs, slightly beaten
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. On medium heat, whisk milk and cornstarch in a small saucepan and simmer until slightly thick and creamy. It is important that you whisk constantly. The mixture will get thick all at once– butter and whisk until melted. Remove from stove and let cool slightly.
2. Pour drained corn into a mixing bowl. Once the milk/cornstarch mixture has cooled off a bit, mix into the corn. Add honey , eggs, and vanilla. Pour into a greased casserole dish.
3. Bake for 30-40 minutes until casserole is set and bubbling. Cool slightly before serving.