For many adults, this is the best time of year.
We get a few days extra off of work; people seem in better spirits, if only for a few weeks; we can relive a bit of childhood through our kids.
And we get to do what adults like to do. Drink and eat at parties.
Here at KNPR's Winter Lodge on Charleston Boulevard, several chefs and mixologists showed up, in from the cold, to give their favorite dishes and drinks. They also gave advice on how to make cheap, easy and good food and drink at home.
If you’re having a party at the house… I think one of the best things to do is to set out a punch bowl. A nice hot punch in the winter time is not only warming but takes a lot of the stress out of making sure everyone is taking care of.
Earl Grey Tea
Fresh lemon juice
Taste as you go, because you can always add but you can’t take away.
There is a style of beer out there for the holiday season it’s called a Christmas ale. Christmas ales are more of a traditional of brewing rather than a style. Typically, you’re going to think Belgium when you think Christmas ales. They have a lot of rich dark malt, caramel toffee-like flavors. A lot of spices. Holiday spices like cinnamon, clove, nutmeg, chocolate.
A great beer for the holidays is a beer that emulates a dessert like fruitcake or something like that.
The good news is we’re here in Las Vegas, Nevada and we’re not going to get to much cold weather… but I still think firing up your smoker or firing up a barbeque and maybe doing your prime rib in your smoker instead of in your oven.
First, I want to age that prime rib. When I get a prime rib for the house, I’ll get it like a month before. I’ll get it in November, I’ll put it in the fridge and just let it sit there in the package that it came in. That’s called wet aging, instead of dry aging. You can do this at home. What that does is make it so tender and delicious.
My mom used to make twice baked potatoes. You can do this the day before. Take a potato, you bake them, you take them out, let them cool, cut them in half, core out all the inside, put all the insides into the bowl, put in sour cream, onions and chives and bacon if you want, mash that altogether like you’re making mashed potatoes, put the mashed potatoes into a pastry bag – if you want you can use a star tip on the pastry bag – pipe the mashed potatoes back into the potato skins. The star tip will create peaks and valleys that will get golden brown, when you put the filled potato skins back into the oven.
1 part gin
1 part Campari
1 part sweet vermouth
It is savory and a little bit bitter so it’s not for everyone’s palate.
I love bubbles on any occasion but especially for holiday celebrations. In a cocktail I love to incorporate champagne or cava or prosecco, add Amaro Meletti and you have a complex lively cocktail and I would finish it with a bit of lemon peel or lemon zest – just to sing the high note- discard that but then thrown in a brandy-soaked amorino cherry.
As a kid, Christmas dinners would be centered around the table with hot pots, which is like an Asian fondue. Thin slices of meat would be laid out on plates. You would have beef, chicken, lamb, noodles, vegetables and they would all go into the pot which was in the center of the table. It’s very communal and fun.
In the center of the table, you would have a soup and it could a simple chicken broth, or you could flavor it with chilies, you can add miso. Around the table you would add thin slices of meat and seafood because that was the most flavorful and by using meat first you’re building on that broth. At the end, you would add your noodles in, so at the end you would have really nice noodle soup.
Rose Signor, bar manager, Atomic Liquors; Jeffrey Grindley, Atomic Liquors; Adam Rains, Barman, CarneVino Italian Steakhouse/Brand Ambassador, Brooklyn Brewery; Mike Minor, TruckU Barbeque, Sheridan Su, chef/owner Fat Choy, and Flock and Fowl