Christmas recipes

Holiday food (and drink) recipes

Whether you're just having dinner with friends and relatives, or hosting a large holiday party, it can be tough to try and find the right dishes to serve and the right drinks to mix for your guests. To help you out during this busy time, we've found a recipe for a drink, side dish, and dessert that will work for whoever you're entertaining this year. Happy holidays!

Christmas Sangria (with white wine) from Food Fanatic:

Ingredients

  • 2 750 ml bottles your favorite white wine, like riesling
  • 1 pomegranate
  • 2 oranges, sliced thin
  • 6 ounces cranberries, about 1 1/2 cups
  • 1 cup pomegranate juice
  • 2 cups ginger ale, or club soda for a less sweet version

Directions

  1. In a large pitcher, combine the white wine, pomegranate arils, orange slices, cranberries and pomegranate juice.
  2. Chill for at least one hour.
  3. Stir in the ginger ale and serve.

Sabrina's suggestion: Freeze the cranberries and any other fruit you add to the sangria to help keep the sangria cool. This way, you won't have to use ice and water down the sangria!

Roasted Brussels Sprouts, Cinnamon Butternut Squash, Pecans, and Cranberries from Julia's Album:

Roasted Brussels Sprouts:

  • 3 cups Brussels sprouts, ends trimmed, yellow leaves removed
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt, to taste

Roasted Butternut Squash:

  • 1 and ½ pound butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cubed into 1-inch cubes (Yields about 4 cups of uncooked cubed butternut squash)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons maple syrup
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

Other Ingredients:

  • 2 cups pecan halves
  • 1 cup dried cranberries
  • 2-4 tablespoons maple syrup (optional)

Instructions

Roasted Brussel Sprouts:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 F. Lightly grease the foil-lined baking sheet with 1 tablespoon of olive oil.
  2. Make sure Brussels sprouts have trimmed ends and yellow leaves are removed. Then, slice all Brussels sprouts in half. In a medium bowl, combine halved Brussels sprouts, 2 tablespoons of olive oil, salt (to taste), and toss to combine. Place onto a foil-lined baking sheet, cut side down, and roast in the oven at 400 F for about 20-25 minutes. During the last 5-10 minutes of roasting, turn them over for even browning, the cut sides should be nicely and partially charred but not blackened (see my photos).

Roasted Butternut Squash:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 F. Lightly grease the foil-lined baking sheet with 1 tablespoon of olive oil.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine cubed butternut squash (peeled and seeded),1 tablespoon of olive oil, maple syrup, and cinnamon, and toss to mix.
  3. Place butternut squash in a single layer on the baking sheet. Bake for 20-25 minutes, turning once half-way through baking, until softened.
  4. Note: You can roast both Brussels sprouts and butternut squash on 2 separate baking sheets at the same time, on the same rack in the oven – that’s what I did.

Assembly:

  1. In a large bowl, combine roasted Brussels sprouts, roasted butternut squash, pecans, and cranberries, and mix to combine. (OPTIONAL): For more sweetness, add 2 or 4 tablespoons of maple syrup, if desired – do not add all maple syrup at once, start with 2 tablespoons, then add more, if desired, and toss with the salad ingredients to combine.

Sugar Cookies from Taste of Home: 

 Ingredients

  • I cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons almond extract
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Frosting: 

  • 6 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 3 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 to 4 tablespoons 2% milk
  • Food coloring of your choice, optional
  • Colored sugar, edible glitter, nonpareils or frosting of your choice, optional

Directions

  • In a large bowl, cream butter and confectioners' sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in egg and extracts. Combine flour and salt; add to creamed mixture and mix well. Chill for 1-2 hours.
  • On a lightly floured surface, roll dough to 1/8-in. thickness. Cut with 2-1/2-in. flour-dipped cookie cutters. Place on greased baking sheets. Bake at 375 degrees for 7-9 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove wire racks to cool. 
  • For frosting, in a small bowl, combine the butter, sugar, vanilla and enough milk to achieve a spreading consistency. Tint with food coloring if desired. Frost cookies; decorate as desired. Yield 6-7 dozen.

Sabrina's suggestion: For extra flavour, consider adding peppermint or lemon extract to the frosting or even the sugar cookie batter itself.

Mom’s Old-Fashioned Gingerbread from Valerie's Kitchen:

Servings: 9

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup unsulphured molasses
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 2-1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ginger
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Powdered sugar and whipped cream, for topping

Instructions

1.     Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Coat a 8" or 9" square baking dish with non-stick cooking spray.

2.     Use an electric mixer to cream together the sugar and butter in a large mixing bowl. Add molasses and egg and beat until well combined.

3.     In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, and salt. Use a spoon to blend the flour mixture into the butter mixture. Add hot water and stir until well incorporated and batter is smooth. Pour into the prepared pan.

4.     Bake at 325 degrees F for 45 to 50 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in center of cake comes out clean.

5.     It is delicious served slightly warm, topped with powdered sugar and whipped cream!

Notes 

For a large sheet cake, recipe can be doubled and baked in a large rimmed baking sheet (approximately 16" x 12"). Follow exactly as directed but reduce baking time to approximately 28 to 30 minutes.

Karen’s suggestion: Serve this gingerbread cake with ice cream, pear or apple slices sautéed in butter, rum, and caramel sauce. The benefits of this dessert is that you can make it ahead of time and freeze the cake – no need to ice or frost it!