Feliz Navidad a Casa Whann

Feliz Navidad a Casa Whann








SHOPPING, DAY OF…….Feliz Navidad

O.K.  I’ve got my lists.

Right Here!


We have our Feliz Navidad on Saturday.  I think Joseph is coming so we need to include him.  Veronica is in Tennessee now but she will be back by then.  I just hope Brian isn’t working any of his 48 hour shifts at the fire house.  I also hope that Mackenzie isn’t in school that weekend in St. Augustine.  Well, alright then, let’s go!  Hurry up Gordon what are you waiting for?  Me?  Just because I am the last one in the car doesn’t mean I am late.  Honestly!

First stop:  Tuesday Morning

Second Stop:  The Asian Supermarket

Third Stop:  The Spanish Supermarket

Fourth Stop:  Grocery Store

Then home!


Getting all the Mexican Pottery out for our Feliz Navidad


Feliz Navidad

Bienvenida a Casa Whann

With our dogs Spooky and Sparky

Gordon and Julie Whann

Celebrating Feliz Navidad, The Whann Way

Our Feliz Navidad Table on our Lanai

So Happy To Have You Join Us

Would You Care For A Drink?  Sangria Perhaps?

We’ve Got Our Favorite Booty Wine  🙂

Gordon with Brian and Veronica, and there is Joseph too.

Looks Like our Mexican Turkey is Ready

I’m Just Putting the Finishing Touches on our Table


Isn’t our table lovely?  Looks like our Chihuahua Spooky wandered in right on cue! 


Our Feliz Navidad Menu

Guava Mango Mexican Ham and Yams

Gordon and Brian Cooking our Mexican Turkey

Our Mexican Spiced and Smoked Turkey

Red Rice

Green Rice

Julie’s Corn Husk Corn Muffins





Roasted Brussel Sprouts

Multi-Colored Corn on Cob

Our Spicy Hot Mexican Navidad Cranberries


(All of our recipes are at the bottom of this post.)


We also created a new post:

Click Here For:  Spicy Hot Mexican Cranberries


Our Dessert Table

Delicious Dulce de Leche Cake and Mexican Wedding Cookies

(Courtesy of Moreno’s Bakery in Tampa)

Also, everyone gets a Feliz Navidad wooden ornament.


Our Nephew Joseph

Veronica and Brian

Hosting The Table

Sparky Looking Regal


Setting Our Feliz Navidad Table

We set up some tables that I draped with many muti-colored scarves of mine.  Placed some of our pottery in front of the table.  Even one growing some Cilantro.  I also placed some metal art flowers in front of the table as well.

Charming Broken Pottery

Actually, this pottery did arrive broken when I ordered it online from Mexico.  Although the top part was spared.  I was disappointed of course, but I still saw potential and decided to keep the broken pieces and just incorporate them in as some “ancient Aztec” treasure from some dig site.  🙂  Whether broken or not the pieces are quite lovely.


Rustic Pots, Broken Pottery, Aloe Cactus, Cilantro, and Metal Flowers

Mexican Pottery Plates and Bowls

I placed our dinner plates, bowls and cutlery on a side table and all of our food on the main table.


The Guys, Visiting

Joseph, Brodie, Justin and Jason


 Time to Eat



Julie’s Feliz Navidad Dinner Plate

The food was absolutely delicious!



What to do with the Leftovers?

How About Turkey Tacos?

With all that delicious leftover Mexican Spiced Turkey, it wasn’t hard to come up with something as tasty as this.







Spring Onions

Jalapeno Peppers


Lemons and Lime Juice

Crunchy Broccoli Slaw (optional)

Salsa and/or Sofrito Dona Lola

(Of course everything here is optional and up to your own personal tastes.)

Just throw everything together in one large bowl.  It makes a great presentation and you don’t have as many dishes to wash.  After all, don’t we all know how much hard work cleaning up a kitchen and washing all those beautiful Navidad plates and platters and bowls after such a big holiday?  And with everything enclosed in a wrap you don’t need to worry about too many dishes to deal with.



Now what to do with the leftover guava and mango ham?

Jalapeno Cheddar Muffins

(I did not make these.  I purchased them from the bakery section of Sprouts.  They are muy buena!!!)

Julie’s Mexican Chili Oil

I did make this though.  If you would like to know how then just visit my:

Julie Whann Way Mexicana Tres

The recipe is near the bottom of that post so just keep scrolling until you come to it.


Here we placed some of my Chili Oil into a saucepan and added an egg (huevo.)

The Chili Oil will add a nice flavor to my huevo.

Here Gordon is adding some Chili Powder and some Freshly Ground Black Pepper.


We cooked a few versions of huevo’s, some fried and some scrambled.


In the meantime…..

Now to fry up our Guava/Mango Ham in a saucepan.

(This step is optional for those of you that prefer it the way it is.)

See how beautifully and caramelized the ham is?

Place the ham onto the jalapeno cheddar muffins. 

Because these are large mushroom type muffins I cut the bottom part off and kind of hollowed out the tops and placed the top down first and then added the ham, eggs, and some cheese.  Then I topped them off with the bottom part of the muffin.

Great for Breakfast, Lunch, or Dinner



Having leftover Mexican Wedding Cookies for dessert.


Our Recipes Start Here


 Two Days Before Our Feliz Navidad Dinner

I, Julie, placed some Achiote Entero Whole Annatto Seeds into a small pouch and placed into a bowl full of water.

Soaking Whole Annatto Seeds

Just keep covered for about 2 days and set aside somewhere in your kitchen.

Calrose Rice is a Short Grain Rice

On the day of our Navidad dinner I placed some rice into our rice maker and instead of adding water from the tap, I added my Annatto Seed water.  I was hoping it would be a bit redder than it was.  It turned out to be more yellow that I had hoped.

It is a very beautiful color though.

Covering The Rice

I also added a few Habanero Peppers to my rice for more flavor.

When done I placed the rice into this beautiful Mexican Pottery.


Cute Dog Break

Sparky in Camouflage


Ready to Soak Some Corn Husks for my Muffins

Soak for about 20 Minutes

I, Julie, wanted to make these lovely festive muffins using corn husks.  But in order for them to be pliable and also to not burn in the oven while cooking, they must be soaked in water first.

I purchased these corn husks at the Latin Supermarket.

In order to save some time, I made them the day before our Navidad dinner.


Mexican Navidad Cranberries Sauce

(We made these about 2 days before.)



2 Bags of Cranberries – rinsed

1 Cup Splenda Sugar Blend

1 Cup Water

2 Tbsp. Sweetened Lime Cordial Juice

2 Tbsp. Lime Juice

1-2 Cinnamon Sticks

1/2 tsp. Freshly Ground Nutmeg

1 Star Anise

2-3 Habanero Peppers – puncture them if you can take the heat, otherwise leave them whole.

1/4 Cup Guava Nectar

1/4 Cup Orange Juice (Some Pulp)

2 Tbsp. Naval Orange Rind


Rinse your cranberries well and remove any that may be highly bruised or going rotten.

Add your sugar blend to a large pot.

Now, add water to the pot.

Turn the heat on medium high heat and squeeze in both your Sweetened Lime Cordial Juice and Lime Juice.

Add your cinnamon stick and star anise to the pot.

Hand grind your nutmeg from the seed into the pot.  If you don’t have the seed you can just use already ground nutmeg.

When the ingredients start to boil, add your cleaned cranberries.

Now, add your Habanero Peppers to the pot.

  You can puncture them if you want your cranberry sauce hotter.

Add your Guava Juice to the pot…

and then your Orange Juice.

Lastly, add your fresh Orange Rind to the pot and stir all the ingredients together well.  You can also slice the orange in half and squeeze that juice into the pot as well.

Beautiful Navidad Colors

As the cranberry mixture cooks, you will hear the cranberries pop.


Pectin, whether naturally occurring or added, requires heat, sugar, and acid to activate. The large amount of natural pectin released from the cranberries will thicken the mixture.  This is easily seen by looking at the difference between the pictures above and below.

Once cooled, place the mixture into jars and refrigerate as you would any jam or jelly.  You can also can the mixture in Mason Jars to use for years to come.  Just follow canning guidance for those easy procedures.

Here we just placed ours in these pretty quick sealed jars for our Navidad.


If you are interested in canning some cranberry sauce we do have a post to help guide you.

Click Here For Our:  Florida Christmas Cranberries


Green Rice

(We also made this the day before our Navidad.)

Getting Out All The Ingredients


You Will Also Need a Foil Lined Baking Sheet


1 Large Yellow Onion – quartered, then quartered again

1 Green Bell Pepper

1 Poblano Pepper

2 Jalapeno Peppers

4-5 Whole Garlic Cloves

2-3 Tbsp. Peanut Oil

3 Cups Chicken Stock or Broth

1 Large Handful of Fresh Flat Leaf Parsley

Cilantro Leaves to taste

1 Can Green Chopped Green Chili Peppers

2 Tbsp. Olive Oil

1 1/2 Cups Long-grain Rice

Salt and Pepper to taste


Slice your onion into eight pieces as shown.

Place them on a sheet pan lined with aluminum foil along with the Green Bell Pepper, Jalapeno Peppers, Poblano Pepper, and Garlic Cloves.

Add the peanut oil to the pan…

and using your hands, coat the vegetables with the oil.

In an oven set at 400’F, roast the mixed vegetables uncovered for about 20-25 minutes or until they are softened.


When cool enough to handle, place the onions in a blender.

Slice the Jalapeno Peppers in half…

and remove the seeds and place the pepper into the blender.

Do the same with the Poblano Pepper.


Remove the charred skin of the Bell Pepper, slice it in half and remove the seeds.  Place the Bell Pepper into the blender with the other ingredients.

Add 1 cup of chicken stock to the blender ingredients.


Now, add the parsley to the blender.

You can add some cilantro as well if you like. 

Here, we opened a new bunch of parsley.



Blend all the ingredients until slightly chunky.

In a large pot, add your olive oil.  Turn the heat up to Medium.

When the oil is at temperature, add your rice to the pot.

Stir the rice to coat each kernel with the oil.


Continue to cook the rice stirring occasionally until browned as shown above.

Add your blended vegetable mixture to the rice.


Stir the rice until everything in well incorporated.


Add your remaining 2 cups of chicken broth to the pot.

Again, stir all of the ingredients.

Cover the rice and cook for about 15 minutes or until done.

Fluff your rice with a fork and season with salt and pepper to taste.


Ham and Yams


The idea for this ham was born out of my, Julie, creating these appetizers about a year before.  I melted down some guava and mango cream paste to make a glaze that I dipped ham into for an appetizer.  It was so delicious!  I then realized that this would make such a lovely Navidad Ham.

La Cubanita Guava and Mango Paste’s

This was the Guava and Mango Paste that I melted down for my appetizer. 

I simply just dipped the Ham into the melted mixture.

If you would like the recipe for my appetizer’s above then visit here:

Click Here For:  Julie Whann Way Mexicana Dos




5 Yams – peeled and sliced into 1/2 inch rounds

1 Pkg. Guava Cream

1 Pkg Mango Cream

1 Cup Guava Nectar

1 Spiral Sliced Ham – comes pre-cooked

Peel and slice your yams and place at the bottom of your roasting pan.

We used Yams as we wanted the beautiful orange color.  Sweet Potatoes are a more beige color.

Place your Spiral Sliced Ham on the roasting pan rack cut side down.


Here are the Guava and Mango Creams we used.

Guava Nectar

Place 1/2 Cup of your Guava Nectar in a medium sized pot.

Remove your Guava and Mango Creams from their wrappings.

Place both creams into the pot with the Guava Nectar and turn the burner to medium high heat.

Melt the mixture together and stir as needed.

As the creams melt, they will become thick, so add the last 1/2 Cup of your Guava Nectar to the pot to thin the mixture out.

Stir the glaze mixture to combine and reduce the heat.

Here I’m adding more Guava Nectar to the bottom of our pan.


Generously Dollop the Glaze Over the Ham and Yams

Bake the ham and yams at 350’F for about 30 minutes.  The meat just needs to be reheated as it was previously cooked.

Into the Oven It Goes



The Pasteles we purchased frozen from the Latin Supermarket and just followed the package directions.  They do require some boiling on a medium-high heat for about an hour.


Roasted Brussel Sprouts

These are a staple in many of our holiday meals.

If you would like the recipe then please check out our:

Eat Your Vegetables

Just scroll down the post of the link above and you will see it.


Julie’s Corn Husk Corn Muffins

These were fun and easy to make.  And so pretty and festive too.

I simply followed the directions on my container of Yellow Corn Meal. 

I did double the recipe so that I would have plenty for us to eat and to share.

But I also added my own touches to these Corn Muffins.

Sunflower and Pepita Seeds

I just followed the package instructions except that I added about a teaspoon of my Chili Powder to the dry ingredients.

Whisking Everything Together


Meanwhile, I’ve been soaking some corn husks in some water to soften.

The scissors act as a weight to hold the husks in the water.


I’ve been pre-heating the oven by now on 400F and greasing a muffin tin with some olive oil spray. 

Now it’s time to assemble my corn husk muffins.

I just removed one of the corn husks that I have soaking in water and used a paper towel just to remove any excess water.  I then either used scissors to cut, or use my hands to tear the husks into strips.  If I had one big strip then I just placed that one down into the muffin tin and immediately placed some of my corn muffin mixture on top of it to prevent it from lifting upwards.  Sometimes I would use 2 strips and place them in a criss-cross position and then pour my muffin mix on top of the 2 of them.  Whatever you decide to do is up to you, but this was a lot of fun for me.

Once all of the muffin tins are filled I sprinkled some sunflower seeds and some pepita seeds on top and then placed them into the ready oven.

You may want to lower the rack so that the husks don’t touch any of the heating coils above them.  When ready just remove from the oven and set them aside to cool.  After about 10 minutes you can take them out of the muffin tin and place onto a cooling rack although I just kept them in the muffin tins until fully cooled.


Mexican Spiced and Smoked Turkey


 Double Breasted Turkey

2-3 Cups Chicken Stock or Water

4-5 Tbsp. Olive Oil

1 Tbsp. Chile Powder

1 Tbsp. Garlic Salt

1 Tbsp. Onion Powder

1 Tbsp. Tajin Clasico Seasoning

1 tsp. Worcestershire Black Pepper

2 Tbsp. Hungarian Sweet Paprika

1 Tbsp. Paprika

1/2 Tbsp. Smoked Paprika

1/2 tsp. Crushed Red Pepper

Turn on the propane and start the grill setting the burners to Medium high heat.  Start your smoker using any type of wood chips you like.

Here are the spices I used.

Place your turkey breasts on a roasting pan and coat the entire turkey with olive oil.  Add enough chicken stock to the pan to cover the bottom.  This is done to flavor and steam the turkey as well as not letting the juices burn when they hit the pan.   You can use water if you don’t have chicken stock.

Sprinkle your spices on the top and sides of the breasts.

Here you can see the smoke from the smoker while I am adding more seasoning.  I have four burners and turn the inner two to very low and mainly use the outer two burners for the heat source.

After awhile your smoker will run out and you need to place a thermometer into the thick part of the breast.  This is so you can check the temperature of the meat.  Cook the meat until it reaches a temperature of 160’F.  This could take a few hours or more.

Here I used aluminum foil to cover the turkey, so it wouldn’t burn.

As the turkey rests, the highly heated juices will return to the center of the meat, cooking the turkey even more to a temperature of 165’F.  Let the turkey rest for 20-30 minutes or more.  If you slice into the meat before it rests, all those super heated juices will run out of the meat, making it dry.  Those juices need to settle in order to create a juicy turkey!  I even leave the probe in so not to give the juices a way out.

Hungry!  Hungry!  Hungry!

This turkey could not have been more perfectly tasting!


The Many Pots on the Stove Top

Our Ethnic Corn

I, Julie, wanted some sort of pretty colorful corn for our table and the only corn I could find were these from the Asian Supermarket.  They do come vacuum sealed but they do have this coating on them that you need to wash off.

You then just cook them the same way you would any corn on the cob except we wanted ours cut up into smaller pieces in order to fit on our dinner plates easier.  Cook them on a medium-high heat for about 15 minutes or so.


Gordon and the Plantains

I, Julie, am doing the write up for these.  Here Gordon is actually working on 2 different plantain recipes.  One with Green Plantains, and one with Yellow Plantains.

Both of these recipes require adding salt to boiling water. 

As you see Gordon doing here.  About 1/2 teaspoon.

So, we’ve got 2 pots of salted boiling water going……

Cutting the Yellow Plantains first.  Here Gordon is slicing them into 4 pieces.

Now To Slice The Green Plantains


All Sliced and Ready to Add to the Pots of Boiling Water

Yellow in One Pot, Green in the Other


We want to boil all the plantains for about 20 minutes.


For The Yellow……

After 20 minutes drain into a colander and set aside to cool.

Peel, then slice into rounds and sprinkle with brown sugar. 

Children especially love this.

Sadly, I do not have a finished photo to show you.


Green Plantains

After boiling for about 20 minutes drain into a colander and allow to cool.


Remove the skins but do not slice these plantains into rounds.

  Leave them as they are.

Slice a Red Onion into half moons and saute in a saucepan.

Simply add some Olive Oil….

Then tumble in your Red Onions.

You want to saute the onions until softened. 

Sadly, this is the last of the photos I have for this recipe.

When the onions were ready we drizzled them on top of the plantains that we placed on a plate and then scattered some chopped parsley over top.  They were a very nice addition to our Navidad dinner.


Sofrito Dona Lola

(Still snacking on this.)

Feliz Navidad Y Feliz Ano Nuevo

Gordon, Julie, Spooky and Sparky


If you would like to view our other Mexican blog posts:

Click Here For:  Julie Whann Way Mexicana Si!


Click Here For:  Julie Whann Way Mexicana Dos


Click Here For:  Julie Whann Way Mexicana Tres


Click Here for our:  Dia De Los Muertos


Our Mexican Inspired Thanksgiving Roasted Chicken and Vegetables