The holiday season has arrived, which means it’s that time of year when guests expect you to bring them some figgy pudding – or any type of pudding for that matter.
After all, those guests likely subscribe to the idea that grabbing an extra slice of ham or overindulging in that box of chocolate-covered cherries couldn’t hurt the waistline all that much.
“Luckily, it’s also oversized sweater and sweatpants season,” says Chef Blakely Trettenero, who knows a thing or two about holiday main courses and desserts, and writes about her culinary adventures on her blog, Everyday Gourmet with Blakely
And if you’re just as inclined as your guests to sneak yourself an extra helping of whatever delicious dish you dream up – well, she can relate.
“I have a love/hate relationship with Christmas cookies because physically I can’t stop eating them,” Trettenero says. “In my family we especially love gingersnap cookies. We used to buy tins and tins of them and just go to town until they were gone.”
But Trettenero also knows that hosting at the holidays comes with pressures. Relax, she says. You don’t need to be the chef extraordinaire at a five-star restaurant to please the palates of the average relative or business associate who made your guest list.
She offers a couple of simple recipes that can help make holiday-hosting duties less painful so you can spend more time sipping eggnog by the fireplace.
Ingredients Instructions 1. In a heavy bottomed pan (or Dutch oven) heat a few tablespoons of olive oil over medium high heat and preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Braised Short Ribs
2. Completely pat dry all of the short ribs. Put them on a paper towel to soak up any moisture
3. Heavily season the short ribs with salt, pepper, and garlic powder
4. Working in batches, sear ribs until a beautiful brown on every side. Put the browned short ribs on a plate while you work on the next batch
5. Once all short ribs have been browned, add the onions, carrots, and garlic to the pan letting it cook for a few minutes
6. To the vegetables, add the tomato paste, stirring to coat everything, and let it cook another 5 minutes to cook out that raw tomato paste flavor.
7. Add the red wine and stir everything, scraping up all of the browned bits on the bottom for flavor.
8. Add back in the short ribs, add the beef broth, rosemary and thyme on the top, and the bay leaves
9. Put the lid on and put the pot into the oven. Let cook for 2 1/2 hours.
1. In a heavy bottomed pan (or Dutch oven) heat a few tablespoons of olive oil over medium high heat and preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Homemade Gingersnap Cookies
About Blakely Trettenero
Blakely Trettenero, host of the Everyday Gourmet with Blakely ~ GourmetwithBlakely.com and Hungry for Travels ~ Hungryfortravels.com websites, is a graduate of the Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts in Orlando, Fla. She is a world traveler, having visited more than 30 countries, and is becoming a frequent guest on TV.