All Posts In Holidays

Make Merry with Boozy Holiday Drinks

by in Holidays, Recipes, December 11th, 2015

Holiday Party PunchWhether you’re having a sweet-as-can-be cookie exchange, a Secret Santa party or a mix-and-mingle cocktail affair, the holidays are a time to let loose and be merry. In the spirit of the season, pour your friends and fam boozy seasonal cocktails, from eggnog martinis to steamy hot toddy swigs, that’ll warm your clan up in a jiff.

If for no other reason than sheer quantity, parties are better with punch. Serve a big batch of this crowd-ready, fizzy Holiday Party Punch, made with a blend of sparkling cider, cranberry juice, ginger ale and vodka, and let guests serve themselves from an old-fashioned punch bowl.

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Sunny Anderson’s Ginger-Molasses Cookies — 12 Days of Cookies

by in Holidays, December 11th, 2015

12 Days of CookiesIt’s time for 12 Days of Cookies, Food Network’s annual virtual cookie swap. Each day, visit us here on FN Dish for a peek at new holiday cookies, party-planning tips and top techniques from your favorite Food Network chefs for rolling, spooning, slicing, baking and decorating delicious sweet treats to give — or keep.

Buttery, chewy and perfectly spiced, Sunny Anderson‘s Ginger-Molasses Cookies are just the recipe to round out your holiday cookie tray. “These are my knockoff of my fave chewy spiced cookie at a local bakery in Park Slope, Brooklyn, called Naidre’s,” says The Kitchen co-host. “They are perfect for a frosty glass of milk. If you ever make it to my area, check them out; until then, enjoy the baking!” Remember to dust the cookies in sugar before baking — this helps to create a gingerbread-like crunch on the outside. Add the crown jewel — a piece of crystallized ginger — when the cookies are still warm from the oven.

Get the recipe for Sunny’s Ginger-Molasses Cookies, and check out 12 Days of Cookies for dozens more recipes and holiday baking inspiration. Then, join the conversation: Tell us what you’re baking this season and what your all-time favorite cookie is.

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Scripps Lifestyle Studios’ Ultimate Cookie Party

by in Community, Holidays, December 10th, 2015

Gingerbread CookiesCalling all cookie lovers! For the first time ever, FoodNetwork.com and HGTV.com are coming together for a holiday cookie extravaganza complete with a full spread of seasonal sweets, a duo of next-level gingerbread houses and even all-star talent like Justin Warner — and it’s all happening live on Facebook.

Beginning at 10 a.m. EST Friday, Dec. 11, you can go to Food Network’s official Facebook page, where Justin will be taking fans behind the scenes inside the Food Network Kitchen and chatting with expert cookie bakers on the team to find out what it takes to bake a cookie that not only tastes great but looks festive too. As the day unfolds, stay tuned to our Facebook page and pop over to HGTV’s official Facebook page to see how the Food Network and HGTV teams put their signature spins on a store-bought gingerbread house. You can also delve into the little-known bits and bites of cookies with Dan Pashman as he reveals the right way to eat a cookie. (Yes, there’s such a thing as a wrong way.) And learn the best sips to serve alongside your favorite cookies.

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Relax, It’s Just a Holiday Party

by in Entertaining, Holidays, December 10th, 2015

And just like that, the holidays are upon us. We see TV commercials with foyers full of people greeting and clinking wine glasses, we watch Diane Keaton movies directed by Nancy Meyers in which the kitchens look like the love children of Martha Stewart and Philip Johnson, and we start to agonize over the fact that we really, really promised ourselves that this year we would (finally) host a holiday gathering. But all those people! All that cooking! All that planning!

But we are going to entertain. And this is how’s it’s going to happen: an open house. It will not be a sit-down dinner for just a handful of friends or be a frenetic cocktail party. It will be a gentile stretch of time with people coming and going as they please. There’ll be a serve-yourself bar with an array of (mostly) room temperature food, and it’ll have a relaxed atmosphere in which people understand that the whole point was to connect for a little while, share a drink and enjoy something good to eat.

Everyone’s time is so stretched in the last months of the year. This kind of party allows people to stop by when it works for them and stay as long as they wish — and it allows you to host a lot of people in one day (i.e., knock off all those IOUs for the times you’ve been their guest) without cramming everyone into your house at once.

Check out our step-by-step guide to throwing an open house holiday party that’s as fun as it is stress-free — even for the host.

5 Fan-Favorite Holiday Cookies Worth Preheating Your Oven — Fall Fest

by in Holidays, Recipes, December 10th, 2015

Lemon Ricotta CookiesIf you’re going to put all the time into baking your holiday cookies from scratch, they better be good, right? So before you go with any recipe that falls into your lap, feast your eyes on these tried-and-true, fan-favorite cookie recipes, each bringing dozens of 5-star fan reviews to the plate.

With nearly 1,000 reviews and a 5-star rating, Giada De Laurentiis’ Lemon Ricotta Cookies are at the top of the heap. These tender, citrusy ricotta cookies will add a refreshing brightness to your cookie exchange, with fresh lemon zest mixed into both the dough and the glaze.

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Giada’s Tips for Make-Ahead Holiday Meals, Plus 7 Easy Recipes

by in Food Network Chef, Holidays, December 10th, 2015

Giada De LaurentiisThere’s no shortage of to-dos when it comes to holiday party planning, so if you can find a way to make meal prep easier before the event, all the better. On her brand-new series Giada’s Holiday Handbook (Sundays at 11a|10c), Giada De Laurentiis is sharing her tried-and-true tips and techniques to entertain with ease this season, plus her best crowd-pleasing recipes for guaranteed party success. Recently FN Dish checked in with Giada about what it takes to successfully prep some of the dishes ahead of time, and it turns out that it’s not only possible, but also simple.

“Any kind of baked pasta can be assembled ahead and then pulled out to bake whenever you are ready,” she told us. Meats, too, are go-to picks. Giada explained: “Braised dishes are always better the next day too. Think stews or my braised lamb osso buco or braised short ribs. Do them a day or two ahead, and you just have to gently rewarm when the guests arrive.”

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Classic Sugar Cookies — 12 Days of Cookies

by in Holidays, December 10th, 2015

12 Days of CookiesIt’s time for 12 Days of Cookies, Food Network’s annual virtual cookie swap. Each day, visit us here on FN Dish for a peek at new holiday cookies, party-planning tips and top techniques from your favorite Food Network chefs for rolling, spooning, slicing, baking and decorating delicious sweet treats to give — or keep.

What sets a classic, homemade sugar cookie apart from the doughy store-bought varieties? We think it’s the combination of crispy edges and a soft, buttery center. Food Network Kitchen strikes just the right balance by using superfine sugar to give the cookies crunchiness, and a small amount of baking powder, which ensures that they puff just a little without spreading too much and losing their shape. You can cut the dough into whatever shapes you’d like, but these tree ornament shapes are timeless.

Get Food Network Kitchen’s Classic Sugar Cookies recipe, and check out 12 Days of Cookies for dozens more recipes and holiday baking inspiration. Then, join the conversation: Tell us what you’re baking this season and what your all-time favorite cookie is.

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Homemade Hot Chocolate + New Treats to Make with It

by in Holidays, Recipes, December 9th, 2015

Homemade Hot Chocolate 3 WaysSipping from a steamy mug of hot chocolate, complete with bobbing marshmallows, is the surest sign that it’s the holiday season. Though making your own at home can be as easy as tearing open a packet of hot cocoa powder, mixing it with milk or water and zapping it all in the microwave, a more hands-on approach means that your blend can be tailor-made to your preferences. Follow Food Network Kitchen’s lead for Homemade Hot Chocolate, and watch how they spike the base blend for three wintry hot chocolate cocktails.

If you’re not making your own hot cocoa powder from scratch, there’s no shame in buying the store-bought blend by the packet. That said, if you have more hot cocoa powder on your hands than you know what to do with, we’ve got ways to use it for treats that might be even better than the drink.

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Jeff Mauro’s Pecan Crescent Cookies — 12 Days of Cookies

by in Holidays, December 9th, 2015

12 Days of CookiesIt’s time for 12 Days of Cookies, Food Network’s annual virtual cookie swap. Each day, visit us here on FN Dish for a peek at new holiday cookies, party-planning tips and top techniques from your favorite Food Network chefs for rolling, spooning, slicing, baking and decorating delicious sweet treats to give — or keep.

Jeff Mauro dresses up buttery pecan cookies for a holiday soiree by rolling them in snowy powdered sugar until they’re generously coated. Be careful not to overbake these delicate crescent moons — burnt dough compromises their delicate flavor and results in a firmer cookie than is intended. You can trust that the bake times have been thoroughly tested: The Mauro family has been serving these cookies every Christmas for over 30 years. Jeff’s one piece of sage advice? Don’t try to sneak one. “These tempting cookies were nearly impossible to sneak a pre-holiday nibble of, because even one bite would yield a trail of powdered sugar all over the kitchen, your shirt and your mouth!” says The Kitchen co-host.

Get Jeff’s Pecan Crescent Cookies recipe, and check out 12 Days of Cookies for dozens more recipes and holiday baking inspiration. Then, join the conversation: Tell us what you’re baking this season and what your all-time favorite cookie is.

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Goodbye, Pumpkin Spice. Hello, Peppermint!

by in Holidays, Recipes, December 8th, 2015

peppermint hot chocolateGet ready for peppermint everything. With the pumpkin spice craze behind us, it’s time for a more festive flavor trend. And no food embodies the spirit of the winter holidays quite like a shiny red-striped candy cane. Here’s our list of top peppermint-flavored treats to make this season.

Slow-Cooker Peppermint Hot Chocolate (pictured above)

This easy homemade recipe is thicker and more indulgent than your average hot chocolate. Stick a ladle directly in the pot, set up an add-ins bar with mini marshmallows, crushed peppermint candies and peppermint schnapps, then let guests serve themselves.

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