Christmastime calls for a great party: a time to bring friends together and celebrate! Entertaining can be stressful and all too often, we over think and overwork ourselves getting ready, or at least I know I do. That’s why this year, I brought you along as I prepared for my Christmas party. I made a lot beforehand so the day of the party was as stress free as possible. To finish preparing, I had to make some candied nuts. Honestly, I don’t think it’s truly a party without some nuts placed strategically in bowls around the house for guests to munch on. No matter where someone may wander in the house, I want to make sure they have something to satisfy their hunger. These candied Cajun nuts satisfy both a sweet and savory tooth. A slightly spicy Cajun seasoning ends with a sweet finish.
Christmas cookies have exploded! Growing up, we had the standard sprinkle sugar cookie cutouts, peanut butter cookies with chocolate stars and peanut butter cup cookies. These days, I try to top myself every year with something new and inventive, while still making the staples of course. These chocolate ginger cookies combine many of my favorite flavors. Rich chocolate with spicy warm ginger meld with the caramel-esque dulce de leche to make these cookies stand out from the rest. Many of the flavors are borrowed from traditional cookies, but when grouped together they become a new and festive change from the normal!
Really, the title sells this recipe. Whether you want a fun appetizer before dinner, a great snack durning a party or just a delicious for-yourself-dish, these Brussels get me every time. First roasted in the oven to make them slightly tender, then fried in a little bacon grease for a smoky crispy finish, these really are a holiday indulgence. Served up with the easiest garlic aioli – honestly it’s mayonnaise with some garlic – and crumbled bacon, your Christmas just got a whole lot more merry!
A meal can be daunting when planning a party, especially one around the holidays. Often I overthink a menu and try to make it overly impressive and memorable. The more I entertain, I realize good food, no matter how complicated, is memorable. Guests will always remember a fun evening with good, homemade food. To keep my stress level under control this season, I’m switching up my Christmas party and making a slow cooker soup! What could be easier than dumping the ingredients together, turning it on and walking away? This turkey soup has festive smoky flavors, cozy sweet potatoes and brights pops of kale!
Every holiday party needs a great drink. Early in the evening, I usually gravitate towards something bubbly and festive. But as the evening progresses, I like to serve something more dessert-like. This peppermint and chocolate coffee cooler hits all the right notes: the right amount of chocolate, cool peppermint ice cream and, if you please, coffee liquor.