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Growing Good Food at Home

Foolproof Recipes for Thanksgiving and Winter Holidays

It’s hard to believe we’re finally here: the crux of the baking season. From Thanksgiving to the New Year, it can sometimes feel like we spend half of the holiday season peeking into an oven checking on some yummy treat. That’s okay with me! 

The November/December 2019 issue of RecipeLion Magazine is designed to give you plenty of ideas to spend the season in style. Who doesn’t love coming in from the cold to the aroma of freshly baked sweets coming from the kitchen? We can’t forget all the parties and get-togethers, either. We’ll need appetizers aplenty! 

In this issue of RecipeLion Magazine, we have some evergreen favorites that work all year round, as well as some special seasonal surprises. And you’re going to love the slow cooker hot chocolate. 

Don’t forget side dishes! They’re a staple of any big holiday meal, so whether you’re bringing a dish to help out or you’re cooking the entire meal yourself, these staples are always a hit. And we can’t skip dessert, because, let’s be honest, we all know that’s the best part of a holiday meal!

We have an array of pies that will steal the hearts of everyone at Thanksgiving dinner. And there are five ideas you can show off at your next cookie exchange. With recipes like these, your holidays are bound to be jollier than ever!

Here’s a look at some of what’s in this issue.

Foolproof Recipes for Christmas Morning

I know this is for Christmas morning, but I promise you’ll want these pretty much every day of the year.

  • Ho-Ho-Ho-liday Cinnamon RollsMake these in advance, then all you need to do on Christmas morning is slice and bake! You just can’t beat the smell of fresh cinnamon rolls straight out of the oven.
  • Caramelized Banana PancakesBanana pancakes are yummy enough on their own, but when you add a caramelized banana topping, it becomes simply irresistible. (You may even want to use that topping recipe again to fancy up French toast, waffles, or even ice cream!)
  • Christmas Morning Coffee Cake: Christmas morning is a time to indulge, and there’s no better way to celebrate than with a fresh-out-of-the-oven coffee cake. You’ll be hard-pressed to decide which you like more—the soft, fluffy cake bottom or the cinnamon-pecan topping.

No-Stress Appetizers

Easy-peasy, lemon-squeezy!

  • Homemade Popovers with ChivesPopovers can be trickier than they look, but they still taste great, particularly when they’re fresh from the oven!
  • Crispy, Creamy WontonsA recipe that’s both crispy and creamy at the same time? That’s what you get with these homemade wontons. Be careful, though! With a crispy outside and a soft cream cheese center, these appetizers might be gone before all the guests arrive.
  • No-Bake PinwheelsThis recipe is a snap to put together, and they add a nice burst of color to your appetizer plate.

Side Dishes Every Holiday Meal Needs

Honestly, I could eat an entire meal just of these side dishes.

  •  Glazed Butternut SquashThe secret to this recipe is a light glaze of cinnamon sugar that gives the squash the lovable sweet edge that makes a holiday meal truly special. It doesn’t hurt that you can have it on your table in about 30 minutes.
  • Old-Fashioned Green Bean CasseroleA holiday meal isn’t complete without the trusty green bean casserole. This one includes some shallot and cremini mushrooms to add a richer flavor and is topped off with crispy fried onions for a snappy crunch.
  • Slow Cooker Dinner RollsI love the slow cooker. And I love how easy these rolls are.

Pass the Pie: Apple, Pecan, Pumpkin & More!

Who are we kidding? The best part of any holiday meal is the pie, right?

  • Cranberry Pecan Lattice PieYou won’t want to miss this one! The combination of cranberries and pecans creates a salty-sweet-tart flavor that’s melt-in-your-mouth delicious.
  • Apple Nut PieThis pie is ideal all season long, but it’s an especially lovely choice for Thanksgiving dinner. Serve this fresh from the oven topped with a scoop of vanilla ice cream for the ultimate indulgence. 
  • Southern Pecan PieThis pie is an absolute treasure, and a staple of southern cooking. The key with this recipe is a couple tablespoons of bourbon. It gives the pie a mature taste that elevates it to the next level.

5 Ways to Become the Cookie Exchange Master

Is there anything better than a cookie exchange?

  • Italian Christmas CookiesItalian Christmas cookies always seem to wind up in your cookie exchange collection, and they’re such a welcome sight. Some versions of the cookie have a powdered sugar coating. For our version, we did a light glaze, topped with sprinkles.
  • Homemade Gingerbread PeopleFor the ultimate decorative cookie experience, make a batch of these ahead of time and get a bunch of sprinkles, icing, and candies together to create a fun memory for the kids!

I hope you enjoy the latest issue of RecipeLion Magazine as much as we’ve enjoyed putting it together. We’re so happy to be here cooking with you and we’re looking forward to many more recipes, dishes, and meals to share. 

Happy cooking—and happy eating!

Kim Mateus

Executive Director

P.S. Please enjoy this issue of RecipeLion Magazine, and let me know what you think about it by commenting below with your feedback! Your input is valuable to us and can help us make improvements.

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