Holiday Recipes

Macie Crawford, Staff Writer

With Thanksgiving over, Christmas is up and coming. This means more time with friends or family, more dinners, lunches, brunches even? When you and your loved ones celebrate, it’s usually with food. Whether you need a last minute dish or are looking for inspiration you have come to the right place. First, some savory recipes:

1. Cheese Ball (optionally covered in nuts)

A classic in many movies and actual christmas gatherings. Just containing cream cheese, your choice of shredded cheese, a few aromatics and spices. No bake time just keep it chilled until you are ready to serve.

First get a medium sized bowl and mix 8 ounces of cream cheese, 8 ounces of any shredded cheese (although I recommend cheddar you can do any), about a quarter of a small onion, about half of any colored bell pepper, 2 teaspoons of Worcestershire sauce, a teaspoon of lemon juice, add salt, pepper, and cayenne to your taste. To help you roll the mix into a ball put a medium sized piece of cling wrap on your counter, wrap it, shape it, and if desired roll it in nuts then chill.

2. Spiced Mixed Nuts

A good, light snack to have your guests munch on while you prepare or finish up the main course(s). Filled with many yummy flavors, it’s sure to be a party starter.

Start out with an already mixed nuts package or choose the nuts you desire. Get a bowl and fill it up. Add 2 tablespoons of butter, a tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce, a teaspoon of chili powder, ½ teaspoon garlic salt, and ¼ cayenne pepper. Feel free to add more or less to your liking. But just like that, you’re done. Quick, easy, and most importantly yummy.

Now a couple of sweet things:

3. Puppy Chow (muddie buddies, holiday Chex mix)

A fun activity to make and enjoy for all ages. Only needing Chex cereal, chocolate chips (melted), and powdered sugar. A bag or bowl to combine all the ingredients and you are set.

Set up a large bowl or bag for later. Start off by melting a cup of chocolate chips (if so desired a cup of peanut butter as well), as it cools to the point where it’s not hot to the touch but not hardening. Put about half a bag of Chex cereal in your bag or bowl. Mix in the melted chocolate and once all the cereal is evenly covered, add a cup of powdered sugar, adjust as needed, until everything is well covered. Keep in a ziplock bag for later consumption or set it out in a bowl for sharing.

4. Peppermint Bark

A yummy and definitely Christmas spirited treat. A good treat for a pick me up during the day or a late night treat paired with ice cream or eaten alone. With simple and easy ingredients it’s sure to get your guests into a cheery mood.

First melt 12 ounces each of white chocolate and milk or dark chocolate, add 1 ½ teaspoon of peppermint extract to the melted white chocolate, get out a rimmed baking sheet and cover it with parchment paper and add a layer of milk or dark chocolate then white on top of that. Use a knife or skewer to create swirls and lightly mix the chocolates together and once it looks good crush 3 peppermint candy canes or 12 round peppermint candies and spread them over top the swirled chocolates. Set aside in an undisturbed area to harden to room temp for about and hour, just keep an eye on it, and once it’s hardened lift the bark off the parchment and break it into your desired size and shapes of peppermint bark. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks.

Hopefully these recipes helped with your last minute rush to a family/friend dinner or helped you get inspired to get some Christmas cooking in this holiday season.