All Posts In Holidays

Christmas Cakes and Cupcakes That’ll Make You Ignore the Cookies

by in Holidays, December 18th, 2015

We go crazy for Christmas cookies like the rest of you (check out our 12 Days of Cookies countdown), but they’re not the only reason to preheat your oven this season. Show up at a holiday gathering with a batch of festive cupcakes or a gorgeous Christmas cake that might just overshadow that table full of cookies. Read more

Spike It: Boozy Frozen Peppermint Hot Chocolate

by in Drinks, Holidays, Recipes, December 17th, 2015

Spike It: Boozy Frozen Peppermint Hot ChocolateWords cannot explain just how excited I get about hot chocolate season. I’d never been a huge fan of hot beverages until recently, when I fell down the coffee hole fast and hard. But I always could get down with hot chocolate. And it had to be chocolate — not cocoa. Cocoa could work in a pinch, and I vividly remember drinking it from the packets on freezing cold days after playing in the snow with my brothers for hours on end. But the chocolate. Like sipping chocolate … that’s what dreams are made of.

It all started with Serendipity 3 in New York City, and if I’m being real, then it actually started with the movie Serendipity. I was completely fascinated by the adorable boutique-y cafe in the movie that served what only appeared to be ridiculous frozen hot chocolate.

 

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5 Teacher Gifts for $20 or Less

by in Holidays, December 17th, 2015

Holiday shopping can feel like an endless (and expensive) endeavor, but these sweet tokens of appreciation won’t go unnoticed — and they won’t break the bank either. Whether you’re shopping for a college professor or your kid’s elementary school teacher, these five gifts are right on the mark.

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5 Indulgent Side Dishes to Deck Your Holiday Table — Fall Fest

by in Holidays, Recipes, December 17th, 2015

Individual Potato GratinsRiding the coattails of Thanksgiving, the side dishes decking your holiday table are just as important as the main dishes. Sitting beside an expertly crafted rib roast or a glazed spiral ham, these indulgent, holiday-worthy side acts are as sure-to-please as it gets.

If your family is all about a creamy, indulgent side dish over the holidays (or, let’s be honest, any time), Melissa d’Arabian’s Individual Potato Gratins make it easier than ever to enjoy one. Layer sliced potatoes, Swiss cheese and chopped green onions into muffin cups, then give each one a splash of cream before baking to creamy perfection.

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Behind the Scenes: Food Network Kitchen’s Gingerbread House

by in Behind the Scenes, Holidays, December 17th, 2015

The Secret Roof CompartmentIn case you missed it, last week FoodNetwork.com and HGTV.com came together in the Scripps Lifestyle Studios to host the ultimate live holiday cookie party on Facebook (watch the three segments here, here and here). Justin Warner hosted the event, and I had the pleasure of nerding out with him and Michelle Buffardi, from FoodNetwork.com, on chocolate chip cookie recipes.

One of my favorite parts of the day was the unveiling of the gingerbread house that recipe developer Melissa Gaman and FoodNetwork.com’s Eric Kim (with special help from Mory Thomas and Miriam Garron) worked on ALL DAY! Viewers had a ton of questions about the construction of the house, so here are some of their building tips:

The Secret Roof Compartment (pictured above): Melissa cleverly turned our house into a surprise cookie jar. Here’s how she did it: She cut one of the roof sides into two pieces and “glued” the bottom piece, with royal icing, onto the house. The removable piece simply sat on top without needing to be affixed to the house. Then the whole roof was decorated in almond shingles that covered the seam to the secret panel!

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5 Fruitcake Recipes You’ll Actually Like

by in Holidays, Recipes, December 16th, 2015

fruitcake cookiesWhen you hear “fruitcake,” you probably envision a dry, dense cake that arrives by mail during the holidays. The fruit-filled loaf has a bad rep, and it’s time to change that. These five delicious recipes dismantle everything you thought you hated about fruitcake.

Fruitcake Cookies
“For anybody who doesn’t like fruitcake, forget it. You’ll love these,” says Ina Garten. And we believe her. Sherry-soaked fruit is infinitely more appealing when encased in buttery cookie dough with crunchy pecans and a touch of lemon.

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5 Baked Hams for Your Christmas Celebration

by in Holidays, Recipes, December 16th, 2015

Whether you like your ham crosshatched or spiral-sliced, spicy or sweet, we’ve got just the recipe for your Christmas feast. The differences may seem subtle at first, but choosing the right glaze or spice rub to suit your palate will make a world of difference.

Fig-and-Orange-Glazed Ham (pictured at top)
You can’t go wrong with a classic spiral-sliced ham dressed in a super-seasonal fig-and-orange glaze. For the best flavor results, spoon half of the glaze over the ham before baking and save the rest to drizzle on top once the ham comes out of the oven.

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7 Sweet Symbols of the Holiday Season

by in Holidays, Recipes, December 15th, 2015

Fragrant pine branches layered with ribbon and candy canes, a freshly cut yule log smoldering in the fireplace, winter-white landscapes come to life with merry snow people: These are the season’s defining emblems, and you can always rely on them to set a festive scene at your holiday party. Even better is when they’re manifested in sweet, edible form. Here are seven of winter’s familiar symbols transformed into whimsical desserts, including delicate snowflake cookies, classic French yule log cake and a tower of cupcakes fastened in the shape of a Christmas tree.

Cupcake Christmas Tree (pictured at top)
Transform basic chocolate cupcakes into a stunning centerpiece for your Christmas dessert spread by generously coating the frosted tops with green sprinkles or jimmies and fastening them onto a Styrofoam cone using toothpicks.

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Cookbooks for Every Food Lover on Your List

by in Holidays, December 14th, 2015

Holiday shopping for your ever-growing list of family and friends can be stressful. But if you, like us, have a number of food-obsessed people in your life, it’s about to get a lot easier. It was a great year for cookbooks, with a wide variety of new titles that’ll appeal to serious cooks, newbies and those who simply enjoy displaying gorgeous food photography on their coffee tables. Here are cookbook recommendations for pretty much everyone on your list. Bonus: Cookbooks are super-easy to ship anywhere via Amazon or the Food Network Store. Read more

The Do’s and Don’ts of Edible Holiday Gifts, According to Food Gift Love’s Maggie Battista

by in Books, Holidays, December 14th, 2015

Peanut Butter BallsWith the holiday season in full swing, chances are good you’re making your list and checking it twice — and trying to figure out what to give all the important people in your life. From hostess gifts to something for your children’s teacher or your friends from book club, one thing rings true: Everyone loves a delicious holiday treat. Maggie Battista’s new book, Food Gift Love, has you covered on all edible gift fronts.

If the idea of making edible gifts is daunting for you, Food Gift Love is the book to guide you through the holiday season. (It’s also a wonderful gift if you’re not inclined to make edible gifts yourself, but you have friends who enjoy that sort of holiday cooking and baking.) The recipes are elegant and sophisticated without being fussy or difficult to produce. Each one comes together wonderfully easily, and the helpful gift-packaging advice will leave you looking like a holiday rock star with minimal effort. Battista shared her top do’s and don’ts for holiday season edible-gift making with us:

Do:

  • Host a food-gift-making party. Turn a holiday get-together into a marmalade-making session or chocolate-dipping feast. Attendees can contribute food and gift-wrap supplies. Share the expense, the work, the bounty and the holiday spirit!
  • Put a label on it. Be sure to put the name and date prepared (and, if you like, a date by which to consume it) so your recipient knows exactly how long she or he has to enjoy the edible treat this holiday season.
  • Regifting gift-wrap is OK. Save old but clean gift-wrap and reuse it for new gifts. Making use of old ribbon and paper multiplies your holiday gift decor options and lengthens their lives before they’re recycled.

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