In the south Christmas Eve comes in many forms. Some are as unique as the cultures and mixing pot of people themselves.

Some might be having Christmas Eve that looks like something out of a Norman Rockwell painting and for others it might look something more like National Lampoons Christmas Vacation either way you can bet the sheer mix of families here in Louisiana keep it interesting.

Honestly my favorite is the one that is planned to be prim and proper and ends up more like the cult classic comedy. Just like in the kitchen things in life don’t always go exactly according to plan. People are late, packages don’t show up, something didn’t cook right, the one ingredient you thought you had YOU DON’T, and the store is closed, kids won’t go to bed, you receive the all too classic unexpected (and sometimes unwanted) guest, and yes you probably should have bought ice, ‘cause the ice maker didn’t have time to prepare like you did. To ease those burdens and smooth those mishaps one thing we can do here in the south is consume!!!!! 

This recipe is probably as old as the stories still told to kids on the bayou about Papa Noel, but it sure can come in handy for those Christmas Eve gatherings, the planned and the unplanned ones as well. 

Southern Christmas Eve Punch

1 fifth of Southern Comfort (I know I don’t like it either but bear with me) 
3 quarts of cold 7up (not sprite)
6 oz of fresh lemon juice (not the squeeze kind, come on it’s Christmas) 
6oz can frozen orange juice 
6oz can frozen lemonade 
7-8 drops red food coloring (This is important, even if you don’t like the guest don’t serve them punch that looks like the Sabine River) 

Mix in a large punch bowl and add the 7up last. Once combined add the food coloring and give it a gentle stir. 

Serve over ice or put a block of ice in punch. 

Remember to keep the kids out of it and the neighbor’s glasses topped off. 

Until next week this is Chef Hunter Lee wishing you all a very Merry Christmas 

Remember, “treat your kitchen, treat yourself”

Benwood’s, uniquely Southern, surely the Best!!!!