With the holiday season just days away, we here at Edible Alaska are amped up to get you ready to feast with family and friends.
This planner will get you started. We’ve found recipes from food writers across the state to bring you new favorites, as well as tried-and-true Edible Alaska dishes, and traditional takes on holiday fare from Edible publications around the country.
Throughout November and December, we'll be giving you ideas for the newest trends in table settings, fun ideas for guests, and answers on those etiquette conundrums, so be sure to stick around.
1. First things first. Are you making a turkey this year?
Yes, I always make a traditional turkey for the holidays
Straight-forward and simple, a brine is a great way to add a little something extra to a traditional bird. Give this version from Edible New Hampshire a try!
Yes, but I’m only cooking for a handful of guests
Turkey Thigh Roulade
This recipe from Edible New Hampshire is wonderful for an intimate gathering of guests, and the sous vide method is especially great if you don’t want to spend all day cooking a full bird.
Yes, but I’m looking for something unique
Clay Baked Turkey
Forget Turducken or deep-fried turkey — if you want a one-of-a-kind meal for guests try this recipe from Edible Michiana. It starts with digging a fire pit and building up a bed of coals. Your bird goes into an oven bag before being caked in a layer of clay then covered in foil and buried in the embers.
No, I want an Alaska ‘wow’ factor
This famous traditional French dish was made popular in the U.S. by Julia Child, but this version by Edible Alaska contributor Cameo McRoberts featuring bear meat is 100 percent Alaskan.
No, I’m more into seafood
Pirok - Savory Alaskan Salmon Pie
Edible Alaska contributor Susie Jenkins-Brito brings the flavor in this recipe from her Set The Net blog. Based in Dillingham, Alaska, she fills her holiday table with the season’s harvest.
No, we’re meat-free this holiday
Just because your meal is vegetarian doesn’t mean it has to lack flavor. Check out this recipe for Wild Rice and Havarti-Stuffed Acorn Squash from Edible Aspen that makes a great main course or side dish.
2. Your guests have arrived. How do you greet them?
With a big hug, it’s family after all
Hot Apple Cider
A warm cup of homemade apple cider is like slipping into your favorite fall sweater. Give this recipe for Hot Spiced Apple Chai Cider from Edible Nashville a go this holiday season.
A handshake since I don’t really know them
If you’re unsure about your guests this year, a fun way to break the ice is having a signature drink for the evening. We prefer recipes that can be made both alcoholic and non-alcoholic. Try Alaska Dispatch News columnist and Alaska From Scratch blogger Maya Wilson’s Pomegranate Mule. It’s elegant, tasty, and sure to win over your dinner guests.
With a kiss on both cheeks
Glühwein (Mulled Wine)
This European classic goes by many names. In Swedish, it’s glögg — the pronunciation sounds like “glug.” The German name glühwein directly translates to “glow wine.” (Need we say more?) Try Jessica Stugelmayer’s recipe this holiday season. This simple recipe can be easily made in a large batch for a crowd. Perfect for apres-ski!
By shouting from the kitchen for them to help themselves
Eggnog is one of those holiday staples — just like Aunt Joyce’s casserole, it will always be at the table. We are excited to feature Edible Alaska contributor Ashley Taborsky’s version!
With something caffeinated
Real Pumpkin + Spice Latte
The holiday season can be a stressful and tiring time of year. By the time you get to where you’re having your holiday meal, you could use a pick-me-up. This Real Pumpkin + Spice Latte from Little House Big Alaska blogger Laura Sampson will warm you and put a little pep in your step.
3. Think of your side dishes like your ideal match. How you would describe them?
Tart, but sweet
Lowbush Cranberry Marmalade
If you picked some lowbush cranberries this year, Edible Alaska contributor Natasha Price’s recipe for marmalade is a fabulous way to bring them to your table this holiday season. Also known as lingonberries, lowbush cranberries are sweeter and more colorful than commercial cranberries.
Wholesome and well-rounded
For most of us, stuffing is a holiday table staple. Mix it up a bit this year with these three variations from Edible Sarasota.
Fancy and a bit cheesy
Tomato + Caramelized Onion Balsamic Tart
With this recipe from Edible Alaska contributor Susie Jenkins-Brito, go back to the beginning of fall — when the temperature started to drop and late summer produce was put in the oven to roast to perfection.
They stand out from the crowd
This pickled pumpkin from Edible Alaska’s Mary Smith is really unique. The flavors are balanced and they take a recognizable combination (in this case, pumpkin and cinnamon) and give it a new twist.
4. Let’s talk spuds. What will you be doing before or after dinner?
White Wine Smashed Potatoes
These potatoes are smashed — not mashed. The recipe from Edible Communities can serve your whole team or be scaled down for a small gathering.
Trying to beat everyone at board games
These bite-sized pillows bring two favorites together — potatoes and pasta. Edible Vancouver has two variations sure to brighten your holiday menu: Potato Gnocchi with Morels, Nettles, and Roasted Garlic Cream and Squash and Walnut Gnocchi with Sage Butter and Brussels Sprouts. We won’t judge you if you use them as game pieces.
Listening to music
Sweet Potato and Feta Galette with Spicy Honey Glaze
Galettes are a graceful, free-form cousin to a traditional pie. Edible Ojai and Ventura County has you covered with this recipe for a sweet potato galette that envelops all the notes of fall.
Watching the parade with the kids
Chuli Stout Stew + Cheesy Mashed Potatoes
While these cheesy mashed potatoes would be good on their own (especially with little ones), Edible Alaska contributor and Set The Net blogger Susie Jenkins-Brito raises the bar by topping them with a stew made with stout from Talkeetna’s Denali Brewing Company.
5. Now it’s time for something a little sweet. What do you want for dessert?
Holiday Sugar Cookies
Cookies may be simple, but there’s nothing like gathering everyone around for a decorating party. (If you can resist the urge to eat them all at once!) Get the Edible Alaska recipe.
Sticky Toffee Pecan Pudding
Pecans are another classic holiday season ingredient. From stuffings to pies, you can find gobs of recipes for this little nut. If you’re feeling adventurous, have a go at this recipe for pecan pudding from Edible Charleston.
Gingerbread Maple Glazed Bundt Cake
This cake is filled with winter spices. Susie Jenkins-Brito says her creation is best served with a hot cup of coffee in hand. Get the recipe on her Set The Net blog along with tips on foraging for an Alaskan centerpiece.
A twist on a classic
Butternut Squash Pie
Now, hear us out. We know you’re used to a traditional pumpkin pie, but why not give another squash a try? Edible Alaska contributor and Alaska Urban Hippie blogger Ashley Taborsky makes a pretty good case for her butternut squash pie.
The ever-creative Natasha Price has taken an often burdensome recipe and stripped it down to the delicious basics. (You can substitute lowbush cranberries for store-bought berries if you have them.) You’ll want to keep this 8-ingredient recipe nearby this holiday season.
6. You have overnight guests. What’s for breakfast?
This recipe is one of those go-to recipes for sleepy holiday mornings. It’s best to make this a day ahead, then keep refrigerated until ready to bake. Serve with a green salad or a fresh fruit salad. Get the Edible Alaska recipe.
Apple Cider Pecan Sticky Buns
A favorite from the Edible Alaska fall issue, you can impress your guests with these luscious sticky buns bursting with pecan, apples, and cinnamon. Check out the recipe.
Pumpkin Spice Cake Roll
Some might say that cake isn’t for breakfast. We say, “Pass us the cake and pour us some coffee.” Laura Sampson of Little House Big Alaska’s recipe takes the flavors of the popular pumpkin spice latte and rolls them into a delicious treat.
Goat Cheese, Olive and Herb Muffins
If you overdid it on the sweets the night before, try a savory muffin for breakfast. These muffins from Edible Communities would do the trick!
Hair of the dog
If you’re looking to mix up a batch of this brunch go-to, here’s a list from Edible Communities with 6 different takes on the original.
This planner was designed by Edible Alaska and includes recipes from bloggers Ashley Taborsky, Susie Jenkins-Brito, Natasha Price, Maya Wilson, and Laura Sampson. It also includes recipes from Edible publications: Edible Communities, Edible Aspen, Edible Charleston, Edible Michiana, Edible Nashville, Edible New Hampshire, Edible Ojai and Ventura County, Edible Sarasota, and Edible Vancouver.