Just in case you still have eggnog to spike or plums to sugar before the gang arrives, consider us Santa's little helpers.
We're sharing our time-tested Christmas tips and recipes, as well as plenty from chefs, hospitality experts, celebrities, hosts and home cooks we love. Our goal – sending you into Christmas with a jolly smile on your face, and seeing you emerge on December 26 with your sanity intact.
Here are a few helpful holiday posts that may make your holiday bright.
Everything tasted better when my grandma was around.
Growing up, we didn't get to see my dad's side of the family all that often, but I noticed at some point that all the food we ate in Grandma Kinsman's presence was exponentially more delicious. Later on, I came to realize that it wasn't due to some special grandmotherly mojo, but rather that she used real butter rather than margarine, and my family shopped accordingly when she was in town.
No matter the ingredients, I was predisposed to enjoy her cooking. I loved her and she loved me, her weird, short-haired, misfit granddaughter, even if the rest of the world wasn't inclined to. Seldom did I feel that love so strongly as when her yearly shipment of holiday cookies arrived.
Marilynn Shcolnik of Snohomish County, Washington, shared photos of awe-inspiring gingerbread houses from the 19th annual Gingerbread Village fundraiser in Seattle. The creations are all made by architects partnering with hotel chefs, to benefit the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation Northwest chapter. The theme this year was “Holiday Express.”
Is there a food that makes the holidays bright in your home? We want to hear all about it. Immortalize your food tradition in words, recipes, pictures or video, submit it as an iReport and we'll show off some of our favorites on CNN's Eatocracy food blog through the end of the holiday season.
All this hall-decking and merry-making can make a reveler awfully thirsty. You've got enough on your plate with shopping, party planning and frolicking all about town, so don't overthink your holiday drinks.
Yes, cleverly-crusted glass rims and candy cane garnishes might seem terribly festive, but when it comes to prepping, is the work really worth it? Honestly, I'm gonna go with no. I'd need a whole extra set of limbs to count the number of time I've seen windowsills, counters and tables littered with mostly-full glasses of an elaborate themed cocktail - and a mile-long line for shots, wine and beer at the bar. The drinks are awfully pretty, to be sure, but they tend toward the super-sweet and from the first sip, taste like the next day's hangover.
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