All posts filed under: Holiday Series

It Is The Holiday Season – Right?

I think the fact, Thanksgiving was the fourth Thursday in November instead of the third as normal, I feel thrown off – meaning – that last week of November was usually a buffer to get in the Christmas holiday mode. But this year, all of a sudden it is only 16 more days to Christmas and 23 more days to year end. What? I mean, I am not freaking out, are you? Even if I haven’t sent out my Christmas cards, nor considered shopping for gifts for the immediate family, or even have a clue as to what the dinner menu would entail for Christmas eve because I’ve been too busy rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic for the past year, perhaps like most of us and well, here we are…near the last hours (if you will) in getting it all done. So, here’s what’s on the agenda today. Gifts, fun ones, practical ones and hopefully one the receiver will not re-gift. Qualifier – everyone I know is either a chef, loves to travel …

Holiday Series: In The Baking Mode

I am partly hosting a holiday-ish party next weekend and although most of the catering has been established, and deposits made, the snowflake cookies we envisioned isn’t going to happen – from a bakery. So, I volunteered to bake – for the first time – the said cookies and decorate them in time for the Saturday event. Then of course, I stumbled upon this list of 12 simple and delicious baking recipes for this holiday season to gift all the wonderful beings in your life past the immediate family.  Check out some of my favorites and for the rest go here: And since I usually tweak whatever recipe I want to try, I had to add my take on each one below: Whatcha ye baking?

It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas

With a blink of an eye, the world changed since I last posted-before the Thanksgiving holiday weekend, when I decided to unplug from all things online and simply live life the old fashioned way. While I snoozed the internet, I found a sense of peacefulness in my life consisting of reading an actual book, decorating my house for the holidays, of course this is after I’d cooked the big thanksgiving meal, and leaving the house for a few hours on Saturday to shop for trinkets and such for the twinkly-light decor I decided to be the theme for this year’s holiday decoration. But today is Monday, and there are many interesting topics or subject I wish to share with all of you – who I want to thank, by the way for sending me personal emails sharing your opinions, and recipes and other interesting topics that I just don’t know where to begin to address each one. So, here we go. I’m currently reading Fifty Things That Aren’t My Fault by Cathy Guisewite, and I …

Food: Mashed Potatoes 101

For the most part, I’ve taken off the side dish from my everyday life – staying true to eating less starch and more plant based  – but of course, the holidays are upon us, and one staple for a Thanksgiving dinner is mashed potatoes. But as I have learned over the years, there is a trick to making the best mashed potatoes and then there are mistakes to creating a lumpy goo easily mistaken for a mixture of cement or grout for that tile work you plan to install. So on to the perfect mashed potato from this wonderful site I turn to learning all the tricks of the trade. and the winner or the traditional mashed potatoes in my household is combo hand and fork mashed, with heavy cream, garlic, grass-fed butter, light sea salt, ground peppercorn and chives to taste. Simple, easy and the best tasting of all mashed potatoes I have ever had. How do you make your mashed potatoes?

Holiday Series: Cocktails for Thanksgiving and Thereafter

Thanksgiving being an American holiday is not the only reason one considers hosting a cocktail party. It is the beginning or kick-off to the holiday season in the U.S.  But for those expats introducing the tradition to the friends you’ve made abroad with a dinner party, please consider this list of cocktails to raise the stakes, if you will. 😉 Do you have a favorite cocktail you’d like to share?

Holiday Series: Creative Thanksgiving Decor

We tend to stress the most about presentation, I think. Because after the cooking and baking some of your best of recipes, it is important to make the most impressionable presentation of your signature dish and otherwise to draw your guest to the table or buffet. So here’s a list of creative thanksgiving decor and this one for those tapped out of ideas: {featured image source}

Holiday Series: Thanksgiving Appetizers

Normally my appetizer set-up trumps the actual ‘non-turkey’ oh alright, a sliver of turkey dinner.  The reason for that is, most folks arrive at my doorstep very hungry, and very thirsty for a cocktail, so the ritual begins, munching away at appetizers while cocktailing.  So by the time dinner rolls around, folks are too full to indulge. I haven’t yet figured out how best to settle this matter except perhaps try an array of light appetizers. But that doesn’t mean I won’t share some of the appetizers that are making their way to my list for this year’s dinner gathering. For the rest of of the 123 recipes which by the way are great suggestions for any parties, including Christmas, or New Years, go here   And how to host Thanksgiving or any party without the stress – although I welcome the stress – it is invigorating I think

Food: Chai Infused Carrot Cake

I love carrot cake, and it is probably the only one I won’t pass up on if I were anywhere in the world offering the option. So a carrot cake recipe is always in order, and this chai infused one is one I am trying on Saturday: For the cake: 1/4 cup of almond milk 1 tbsp of Assam tea 1 cup of sugar 3/4 cup of ghee, melted 3 eggs, room temperature 1 tsp of vanilla extract 2 cups of flour (310g) 3 tsp of baking powder 1 tsp of salt 7 – 8 turns of fresh ground black pepper 1 1/2 tsp of cardamom 1 1/2 tsp of ginger 1 tsp ground cinnamon 2 cups of fresh shredded carrots, about 2 large carrots For the frosting: 1/2 cup butter, room temperature 8oz of cream cheese, room temperature 1 cup of sifted powdered sugar 1/2 tsp of vanilla 1/2 tsp cardamom 1/2 tsp ginger 1/2 tsp cinnamon pinch of salt  {more} Do you have a favorite cake? And a well-tested recipe you wish to …

Holiday Series: Thanksgiving Preliminary Prep

I start out with one menu – and then shift it throughout the week leading to Thanksgiving, so with that mindset, here’s what I am considering for the holiday, perhaps even leading to smaller dinner parties up to New Year’s eve. {featured source and inspiration for this blog post}