Suggestions for a Make-Ahead Christmas Dinner?

Good Questions

Q: We're going out of town for Christmas, but my mom will be traveling here to spend time with my brother. They will be staying at our place while we're away (arriving after we've already left).

Her flight arrives on Christmas day so I thought it would be nice to leave them a delicious Christmas meal -- something I can make ahead and that they can just pop into the oven or microwave. Any ideas? An easy dessert would be great too!

Sent by Setareh

Editor: Setareh, what a sweet idea! Our first thought for the main course is to do a braised dish that you can make ahead and they can re-heat in the oven or on the stove top. Mark Bittman's Braised Turkey Legs would make a lovely holiday meal, as would this recipe for Braised Pork Shank.

A hearty kale salad would make an excellent side dish and would also keep well in the refrigerator until serving. For dessert, you can't go wrong with Sticky Toffee Cakelets on Christmas Day. We think these would probably re-heat in the microwave really well.

Readers, what other festive make-ahead dishes would you suggest?

Related: Helpful Tip for "Make-Ahead and Freeze" Casseroles

(Image: Sara Kate Gillingham-Ryan)