Category Archives: Drinks and Cocktails

Happy Holidays! A few of my favorite holiday recipes

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Happy Holidays

Well the holidays have finally arrived – my favorite time of year! I love having some time to rest and relax and enjoy quality time with friends and family, especially around the table sharing delicious food and wine. So to celebrate the season, I’ve rounded up some of my favorite holiday recipes that I’ve created over the years – either for myself or a few of my clients (KitchenAid, Colavita and Seven Barrels), that I wanted to share with all of you. From appetizers, to salads, to desserts, entrees and cocktails, they all have that special magic touch perfect for the holidays.

I’d love to hear in the comments below what some your favorite holiday recipes are too – feel free to post them and share a link below, and if you want to share my recipes online please include a link back to my site and credit to Kristen Hess / The Artful Gourmet and @artfulgourmet on social media (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and Tumblr).

Wishing you all a Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah and a joyous and prosperous New Year 2017!

 

BloodOrangeCake_StrawberrySauce

Blood Orange Olive Oil Cake with Strawberry Chocolate Sauce 

PumpkinPearTart

Pear and Pumpkin Tart

Mini Holiday Tarts

Mini Sweet and Savory Holiday Tarts

Roasted Squash Salad

Roasted Squash Salad with Spiced Pecans

Holiday Brunch Strata

Holiday Brunch Strata

Almond Cookies

Almond Shortbread Cookies with Blood Orange Glaze

Parmesan-Garlic-Artichoke-Dip

Hot Parmesan Artichoke Dip with Homemade Pita Chips

Maple Walnut Pie

Maple Brown Sugar Walnut Pie

Swedish Meatballs

Braised Swedish Meatballs

Butternut Squash Ricotta Tart

Three Cheese Butternut Squash Tart with Bacon

Choc Thumbprint Cookies

Chocolate Thumbprint Cookies

Truffled Pancetta 3 Cheese Pasta

Truffled 3-Cheese Pasta with Pancetta and Garlic

Whiskey Sour and Stuffed Mushrooms

Holiday Cocktail Party! Appetizer and Cocktail recipes 

Sweet and Spicy Asian Chicken Bites

Sweet and Spicy Asian Chicken Bites

Brussels Sprouts

Glazed Brussels Sprouts with Bacon, Shallots and Balsamic

SpinachSalad-Vinaigrette

Spinach Salad with Blood Orange Vinaigrette

ChocolateChipotleShortRibs

Chocolate Chipotle Braised Short Ribs

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Great Read: PAIRED – Champagne and Sparkling Wines Cookbook

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Paired Cover

PAIRED Champagne and Sparkling Wines is a gorgeous cookbook by Australian Photographer Fran Flynn and Wine Expert David Stevens-Castro. The book is filled with tons of information on champagne and sparkling wines and how to pair food and recipes accordingly.

prosecco

They break up the book into different sections based on the different types of wines (Champagne, Cava, Prosecco, New World Sparkling Wines, etc.) with a background on how the wines are made, from what regions, the differences between them which make it easy to understand.

Wine Descriptions

Champagne, Prosecco, Cava, and New World Sparkling Wines all have different fermenting processes from different regions (France, Italy, Spain, Australia, New Zealand) with varying bubble sizes, flavors and characteristics which is absolutely fascinating! They review the wines at a glance describing the different classifications of sparkling wine, what grapes are used, flavors and types of wine. Then they go into more detail with each type of wine suggesting cheeses and recipes that pair well with each based on their flavors.

Croquettes

The food photography by Fran is absolutely gorgeous and mouthwatering, and the way they match the recipes to the different types of sparkling wines is brilliant and well thought out based on matching and balancing flavors of the food with the qualities of the champagne and sparkling wines (sweet paired with sweet, salty paired with sweet, reds vs. roses vs. whites, spicy paired with Asian, tangy paired with dry, etc.)

Empanadas

Gnocchi

There are delicious recipes for cheese and charcuterie boards, appetizers, main dishes, salads and desserts, and I love how they also created specialty tasting menus at the end to help the reader plan a party pairing different wines with different foods for a unique experience – Light and Luxurious Lunch, Rich and Decadent dinner, All that Sparkles, Distinct Pleasures and Latino Influenced.

Inside Spread

I highly recommend this book for anyone interested in learning more about Champagne and Sparkling Wines and to refer to it for their next tasting adventure and party or gathering with family and friends. And it’s perfect for the holidays where bubbles are celebrated and enjoyed the most!

Sabrage

Back Cover

Get the book online here

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Spice Up your Halloween w/ Spooky & Delicious Cocktails

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pumpkin-spiced-rum

Hey friends, Happy Halloween! It’s my favorite holiday of the year (well, besides Thanksgiving and Christmas) and what better way to celebrate than making some spooky and delicious cocktails for your #Halloween party!

captain-morgan-jack-oblast

I love Captain Morgan Caribbean spiced rum, and they have a new kid in town – Jack-O-Blast! It’s the same delicious rum but has all the seasonal flavors of Fall incorporated like pumpkin spice and cinnamon..yum! I wanted to share a few cocktail recipes with you to try with this delicious elixir that will spice up your #Halloween festivities this year.

jack-oblast

And actually, it’s so darn good, you could sip it on ice all by itself! But pick some up quick because it’s limited edition meaning they only sell it in the Fall. Hope you have a Jack-O-Blast time whatever you’re doing for the holiday! Enjoy 🙂

CLICK HERE TO SEE WHERE YOU CAN FIND IT NEAR YOU

apple-jacko

Apple Jack-O

  • 1.5 oz. Captain Morgan Jack-O’Blast
  • 4 oz. chilled apple cider

DIRECTIONS: Combine all ingredients in a glass filled with ice, stir and serve.

mutiny-mules

Mutiny Mule

  • 1.5 oz. Captain Morgan Jack-O’Blast
  • 3 oz. ginger beer
  • 0.5 oz. lime juice

DIRECTIONS: Combine all ingredients in a glass filled with ice, stir and garnish with a lime wedge.

capts-cauldron

Captain’s Cauldron

  • 1.5 oz. Captain Morgan Jack-O’Blast
  • 2 oz. orange juice
  • 1 oz. cranberry juice
  • Optional: 1 oz. club soda topper
  • Lemon wedge – squeezed

DIRECTIONS: Combine all ingredients in a glass filled with ice, stir and garnish with a lemon wedge.

I’d love to hear what fun and spooky cocktail recipes you all are making (or would make!) too..cause, you can never have enough delish cocktails in your life, right? Please comment below! 

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Cocktails for National Whiskey Sour Day!

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Crown Royal Whiskey Sour

National Whiskey Sour Day is finally here, (August 25th) and I’m celebrating one of my favorite cocktails by sharing a few delicious and easy recipes courtesy of Crown Royal, George Dickel and Bulleit.

whiskey sour

Over a century ago, the Whiskey Sour originated as one of the simplest cocktails, with variations of whiskey, lemon juice, and sweetened with sugar. The mix lost attention after the prohibition era, but it resurged with the heightened interest in craft cocktails. Thanks to whiskey’s newfound status and the use of fresh ingredients, the Whiskey Sour has made a strong comeback.

Crown Royal Northern Harvest Rye_bottle shot

Because sours have a higher ratio of alcohol to mix than your typical cocktail, the “unofficial” holiday appeals to the summer beverage interests of men and women alike.

Bulleit Bourbon

To celebrate the revival of the classic Whiskey Sour, honor the holiday by sipping one of the recipes below – a traditional recipe using George Dickel No. 12, and two modern recipes with a twist using Bulleit Bourbon and Crown Royal Northern Harvest Rye.

George Dickel No 12 Whiskey

WHISKEY SOUR RECIPES

George Dickel Whiskey Sour

George Dickel Whiskey Sour

1.3 oz. George Dickel No.12 Whiskey

1.5 oz. lemon juice

0.75 oz. simple syrup

Shake and strain ingredients into an ice-filled rocks glass. Garnish with a lemon wedge or cherry.

Jeff's Redneck Sour

Jeff’s Redneck Sour

1.25 oz. Bulleit Rye

1 oz. fresh lemon sour

0.5 oz. fresh grapefruit juice

2 dashes grapefruit bitters

Shake and strain ingredients into an ice-filled rocks glass. Garnish with a grapefruit half wheel.

Click here for Bulleit Rye Traditional Whiskey Sour recipe

The Harvest Sour

The Harvest Sour

1 oz. Crown Royal Northern Harvest Rye

.5 oz. Crown Royal Regal Apple Flavored

.5 oz. lemon juice

.5 oz. simple syrup

1 Dash Pimento Bitters

1 Egg White

Grated Nutmeg (optional)

Combine ingredients in a shaker with ice. Shake well and strain into a chilled coupe glass. Grate nutmeg for garnish (optional).

—————–

More about Bulleit Bourbon: 

Distilled in Kentucky from the highest quality ingredients, this new variant is a barrel strength version of Bulleit Bourbon with the same high-rye mash bill – roughly 2/3 corn and 1/3 rye. In April, Bulleit Barrel Strength received a Gold Medal from the 2016 San Francisco World Spirits Competition, continuing Bulleit’s history of sharing award-winning whiskeys.

More about Crown Royal Northern Harvest Rye:

With more than 75 years of experience producing quality Canadian Whiskey, Crown Royal introduces its first-ever blended rye whiskey, Crown Royal Northern Harvest Rye. Crafted from 90% rye whiskey, the new blended whiskey from Crown Royal is produced at the brand’s distillery in Gimli, Manitoba, where the distinctive Northern winters create the perfect conditions for a deliciously flavorful, extraordinarily smooth whiskey.

More about George Dickel No. 12:

A 90 proof Dickel whiskey that uses older whiskies to create deeper, more assertive flavors and an incredibly smooth finish. The taste is refined with hints of vanilla and a dry crisp finish– a result of their charcoal mellowing process. Concentrated flavors of rich oak and subtle vanilla lead to a long finish with hints of maple, butter and smoke. It’s a whiskey with enormous depth, range and personality – considered by many to be the gold standard of Tennessee Whiskey.

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Celebrate National Pi Day w/ some PIEHOLE Whisky Cocktails

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Pi Day

Pi Day, the mathematical holiday, is celebrated on March 14th (3/14) around the world. Pi (Greek letter “π”) is the symbol used in mathematics to represent a constant — the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter — which is approximately 3.14159.

And even though it’s a less common holiday to be celebrated, it’s simply another great reason to whip up a cocktail. And what better to include in your Pi(e) Day drink than PIEHOLE Whiskey?

Piehole Sweetheart Brooke

In honor of the occasion, I’d like to share three delicious spring cocktails, created by the National PIEHOLE Sweetheart (and New Orleans Bartender) Brooke Flaherty.

Piehole_Lucky_Apple

Lucky Apple

1.5 oz. PIEHOLE™ Whiskey with Apple Flavored Liqueur

3 oz. Ginger Beer

A splash sour mix

A splash of lemon-lime soda

Garnish with lime wedge

Piehole_Cherry_Punch

Cherry Punch

1.5 oz. PIEHOLE™ Whiskey with Cherry Flavored Liqueur

4 oz. Ginger Ale

.5 oz. Pineapple Juice

.5 oz. Orange Juice

Juice from half of a lemon

Garnish with a cherry and orange

Piehole_Pecan_Sweet_Tea

Pecan Sweet Tea

1.5 oz. PIEHOLE™ Whiskey with Pecan Flavored Liqueur

1 oz. Orange Juice

Top with Iced Tea

A dash of bitters

Lemon juice

Garnish with lemon wedge

————————-

Find more fun PIEHOLE cocktail recipes online at https://www.pieholewhiskey.com

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Top 10 {Things I Love} :: Winter 2015

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My Top 10 {Things I Love} list is back for Winter 2015 with some fun and interesting objets de desir, places, people, books, food and drinks that I’m currently crushing on – not necessarily ordered in terms of my favorite – but are all worthy of a huge shoutout for their awesomeness in my opinion… Happy Holidays and New Year 2016! 

magpie cookbook

Magpie Cookbook – Magpie Artisan Pie Boutique is a popular pie shop in Philadelphia, owned by Chef Holly Ricciardi. This book is full of her famous pie recipes, both savory and sweet – from luscious quiches, pot pies and hand pies, to fruity, creamy and nutty pies like her bourbon-infused Butterscotch Pie recipe passed down from her Grandmother. Great for any pie-obsessed person and includes tons of great techniques on how to make different types of crusts and decorative touches for a gorgeous handmade pie. Ah, PIE.
Get it on Amazon

aria wine bar

Aria Wine Bar, NYC – This trendy cozy place has 2 locations: one in the West Village, and another in Hell’s Kitchen in NYC. Offering Venetian-style Italian Tapas, the menu has a plethora of delicious small plates, appetizers, pasta dishes, and salads all created for sharing. They have a great wine list, and the atmosphere is romantic and buzzing and the best part is the wine list offers the fruits of the world’s foremost lady vintners. Try the Mini Meatballs drenched in homemade sauce and melted cheese, the Sautéed Mussels in wine, or the Truffle Mac & Cheese. You won’t be disappointed! Another NYC fave not to miss.
http://ariawinebar.com

bacon jam

The Bacon Jams Bacon Spread – Who doesn’t love bacon? Well now you can have it anytime on the fly. This delicious Bacon Jam is made with real bacon, brown sugar, and onions with three varieties that can all be simply spread on crackers or bread, elegantly spread to elevate appetizers, grilled sandwiches, pasta or to add bacon to any of your favorite dishes. Try the Original, Black Pepper or Red Chile and Garlic. Delicious!
http://thebaconjams.com

Trimino Protein Water

Trimino Protein Water – With the popularity of vitamin waters and fruit waters abound, there’s a new and improved kid on the block. Trimino Still and Sparkling waters are infused with 7 grams of protein, are caffeine and sugar free, and only 28 calories. And lots of fun flavors too! Strawberry Lemonade, Mixed Berry, Coconut Pineapple, Peach and Watermelon. Perfectly light and refreshing for and after workout drink or as a base for a fruity beverage or cocktail.
http://drinktrimino.com

Gala Pork Pie

Parker’s British Foods – Brits Victoria and Damian Parker have a serious love for British food, and learned the crafts of butchery, meat curing and pie making from some incredible British butchers, combining those skills with the best meats and recipes the British Isles had to offer. Then they got married, packed their bags and set off for a new life in America. Now based out of Buffalo, NY, they offer genuine British food like Pork Pie, Sausages, Proper Fish and Chips and a variety of British sweets, condiments, drinks, snacks and gifts for sale in their online store. Check ’em out, Mate!
https://www.parkersbritishinstitution.com/shop-online

extra virgin nyc

Extra Virgin NYC – Extra Virgin is a great little neighborhood spot located in New York City’s West Village. They offer delicious Mediterranean food in a buzzing dimly lit atmosphere with a fantastic wine selection and different varieties of extra virgin oils from around the world. Try the Fritto Misto – lightly fried calamari, zucchini and shrimp as an appetizer..it’s light and crispy and perfectly fried to perfection. The Prosciutto-wrapped Sea Scallops are equally delicious, served over Cauliflower Puree and Porcini Sauce with a Apple and Celery Salad on the side. The Short Ribs are to die for, and literally melt in your mouth, served over Truffled Mashed Potatoes (try these with a side of Grilled Broccolini..super delicious!) They also have a great Sunday brunch and lovely desserts..Another NYC fave, don’t miss it.
http://extravirginrestaurant.com

Jan Burtz Gold Luster Plates

Jan Burtz Luster Ceramics – Offered exclusively at ABC Home in New York City, these ceramics have a handprinted metallic border that lovingly outlines their natural and irregular forms. Made by hand from creamy porcelain and homemade glazes, these pieces bring us back to the basics, accentuating the fluidity and grace of hand-formed wares. Made in Jan Burtz’s Connecticut studio, no two pieces are alike. Also offered in silver and a variety of bowls, trays, platters, vases, plates and sizes. Adds an elegant rustic touch to any table!

Get them on ABC Home

Maple Syrup Cookbook

Maple Syrup Cookbook – I recently got this cookbook and absolutely love it! Why? Because I’m in love with maple syrup and everything in here has a recipe made with it. I made the French Canadian Maple Sugar Pie with Walnuts and the Maple-Glazed Brussels Sprouts for Thanksgiving and they were both delicious hit at the table! If you love maple syrup as much as I do you can’t miss this cookbook..get it! Immediately.
Get it on Amazon

Raised Bloom Baking Set, Anthropologie

Raised Bloom Baking Set – Who doesn’t love a little bling for the holidays, and better yet who doesn’t love Anthropologie??? This adorable baking set is made of carved stoneware coated in a lovely iridescent glaze including a rolling pin, pie server, measuring spoons, pie plate, whisk and a muffin tin. Almost too pretty to bake with!
Get it on Anthropologie

cranberry sauce

Colors of Nature Cranberry Sauce with Rum and Orange – Colors of Nature is a small, family owned company based out of Brooklyn NY that makes beautiful small batch sauces, jellies and cakes full of fresh ingredients and flavors. Try the Cranberry Sauce made with Rum and Orange – perfect for the holidays!
http://www.colorsofnature.nyc

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Food Styling & Photography: #DineintheDarkNYC Event @CitizenM!

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Dine in the Dark Experience - CitizenM + The Artful Gourmet

I recently hosted a super fun Dine in the Dark Event at CitizenM hotel in Times Square NYC. They invited me to host the event by presenting some delicious nibbles and foodie creations to serve to a great group of food bloggers to do a blind tasting.

Food Blogger doing blind tasting

The idea was to pair flavors and tastes that the bloggers had to experience and guess, which were all revealed at the end of the dining experience by me.

Dine in the Dark Experience

I made 7 different small bites for the bloggers to do the tasting of: Blue Cheese, Apple and Walnut Salad in Endive, Manchego & Fig Jam Tarts, Sesame Sriracha Chicken Bites, Prosciutto, Melon & Feta Mini Skewers, Strawberry-Watermelon Coconut Rum Shooters, Smoked Salmon with Chive Sour Cream & Dill on Cucumber Rounds, and Tart Cherry Pistachio Honey Energy Balls.

CitizenM rooftop CloudBar

CitizenM is a lovely modern hotel in the heart of Times Square, who let us have the space to do my event. They provided us afterwards with cocktails and more nibbles up on their rooftop CloudBar, where I gave a food styling and photography discussion and Q&A with the bloggers.

Food Styling + Photography Q&A - The Artful Gourmet

Everyone had a fantastic time and got the opportunity to learn some of my tips and tricks on food styling and food photography and how to break into the business. The group got to sample some tasty food, sip some delicious cocktails and meet new blogger friends from the city. All and all we had amazing views and it was a fun, lively evening for all.

CitizenM NYC Rooftop CloudBar

Thanks to CitizenM for being such a lovely and accommodating venue! And thanks to all the bloggers* that came and made the event a smashing success! *see list at end of post

Dine in the Dark NYC - The Artful Gourmet

Happy Summer and Cheers to all! Enjoy some photos from the event below and I’ll post my recipes soon – stay tuned! 🙂

All the Food Bloggers — thanks for coming and making the #DineintheDarkNYC event at #CitizenMnyc a fun time for all 🙂

@citizenM

@mealsandreels

@mizchefcooks

@NewYorkcliche

@_theblvd

@msrenelevyabdo

@maryinmanhattan

@PrettyPri

@spersaud04

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Cherry Coconut Key Lime Fizz Cocktail #SunsOutRumsOut

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Key Lime Cherry Coconut Fizz Cocktail

So it’s that time of year again…Memorial Day weekend has arrived and the beginning of Summer is not too far away!

Key Lime Cherry Coconut Fizz Cocktail

It’s time to soak up the sun, hit the beach, break out the grill and have a cookout and a cocktail on the patio or the beach with friends and family..my favorite time of year!

Key Lime Cherry Coconut Fizz Cocktail

I was lucky enough to be a part of a Captain Morgan Rum promotion this year to sample one of their new flavors and design a cocktail recipe featuring their delicious new Coconut Rum.  It’s a little bit sweet, creamy and has hints of citrus and tropical fruit with a hint of molasses flavor.

Key Lime Cherry Coconut Fizz Cocktail

I wanted to make a cocktail that was refreshing and flavorful but not too sweet and came up with this fun Cherry Coconut Key Lime Fizz cocktail. It’s made with the Captain Morgan coconut rum, tart cherry juice, key lime seltzer and a splash of fresh Cara Cara orange juice, key lime juice and a few slices of orange and lime for garnish.

Key Lime Cherry Coconut Fizz Cocktail

Kinda like lying on the beach soaking up the sun in the Caribbean – just my style.

Cherry Coconut Key Lime Fizz Cocktail

Ingredients

  • 1 part Captain Morgan Coconut Rum
  • 1 part tart cherry juice
  • 3 parts Key Lime Seltzer
  • Squeeze of fresh key lime juice
  • Squeeze of fresh Cara Cara orange juice
  • Key lime and orange slices, for garnish

Instructions

  1. Place a generous amount of ice into a glass.
  2. Pour the rum, cherry juice and seltzer into the glass and stir well.
  3. Squeeze the fresh lime and orange juice into the glass and garnish with extra limes and oranges.
  4. Makes 1 cocktail.
Schema/Recipe SEO Data Markup by Yummly Rich Recipes
http://www.theartfulgourmet.com/2015/05/25/cherry-coconut-key-lime-fizz-cocktail-sunsoutrumsout/

Now get out in the sun and enjoy a cocktail or two! And check out their other two great new rum flavors – Grapefruit and Pineapple!

And just remember, when the #SunsOutRumsOut and it’s time to celebrate the beginning of Summer with the Captain!

Follow Captain Morgan on Facebook

Follow Captain Morgan on Twitter

 

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Food Trends of 2014 + Flavor Forecast for 2015

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2014 Food Trends

As the year 2014 is coming to an end, it’s always interesting to see what was hot and what was not in the culinary world and what new food and flavor trends we will see in the New Year 2015. Popular trends seem to come and go each year affecting everything we see: restaurants, blogs, online stores, magazines, TV shows, and even fast food and packaged goods and advertising.

2014 had plenty of interesting ones that went big this year:

Culinary mashups: Cronuts (croissant donuts), Wonuts (waffle donuts), Quesarito (a quesadilla rolled into a burrito), bananas fosters pancakes, bagel burgers, ramen burgers, pretzel subs, Chicken waffle sandwiches, you name it – crazy Frankenfood dishes hit the scene this year.

Spicy burgers: burgers went nuclear this year with everything and anything spicy – Sriracha mayo, poblano peppers, jalapeño peppers, spicy onion rings, melted pepper jack cheese, harissa, ancho chipotle sauce, Mexican burgers with spicy ranch sauce…the list goes on.

Bahn Mi – a traditional Vietnamese sandwich made with roasted pork, marinated vegetables, and herbs on a baguette

Savory Jams – fig jam, pepper jellies, lingonberry jams topped creative sandwiches everywhere this year.

Paleo Diet – this meat-heavy, vegetable-laden, dairy and gluten free diet went crazy. Huge protein portions, cookbooks, blogs and new restaurants opened with a core focus on MEAT.

2015 Food Trends

And here is the flavor forecast for 2015:

Middle Eastern mezze: hummus, pepper spreads, herb-marinated olives

Creative cookies: decadent makeovers on classic cookies

Umami veggies: savory flavors will infuse new recipes such as tomatoes, mushrooms, soy sauce, nori, sweet potatoes

Smoked spices: deeper richer flavors for foods through smoked spices

Sour notes: coarse salt with sour notes from sour cherry, pickled ginger, mango and lemon zest add zing and bling. Burgers topped with kimchi. Shrubs (preserved fruits with vinegar and sugar) will show up in cocktails.

Liquid revolution: juice blends from fruits and vegetables to make healthy flavorful sauces

Global blends: Japanese 7 spice (aka shichimi togarashi) combines chilies, sesame, orange zest and nori. Shawarma Middle Eastern blends made with cinnamon, cumin and black pepper are also going big.

Tacos: regional and modern taco joints and pop ups are going to be everywhere

Scrambled eggs: forget poached and deviled – scrambled eggs for dinner with savory sauces and ingredients are hot.

Spicy flavors: Sriracha will still be in style, as well as international spices like Thai bird chiles that give a serious kick.

Flavor without fat: Chefs are now infusing meats and vegetables with flavor by grilling, rotisseries and smoke.

Meat spreads: Nduja is an Italian meat spread made with ground pork and spices, great for spreading on toast or filling ravioli.

Artisanal candies: Bourbon and sea salt caramels, ice cream gummies and other creative confectionaries will be everywhere.

Soft serve ice cream: seasonal flavors and innovative sundae creations are another hot item in the dessert scene.

Spanish cuisine: Tapas and small plates from the Spanish region will be hot in the fast-casual restaurant world.

Savory pancakes: think potato pancakes on steroids – infused with different vegetable flavors and creative toppings and sauces.

Patty melts: this classic diner dish heats up the food scene with innovative twists on this half burger / half grilled cheese sammie.

Mini cocktails: smaller versions of cocktails served in half portions are popping up to give customers the opportunity to taste more varieties

Artisanal hard cider: move over craft beer, the new trend is using artisanal hard cider to create libations with unusual ingredients such as bourbon, house-made Dijon syrup and thyme.

Gin: new places opening up that solely serve the classic Gin and Tonic in different ways

High-end daiquiris and frozen drinks: new twists on the daiquiri and slushie drink infused with fun flavors and alcohol combinations

Meals to go: restaurants and food brands understand the consumers shrinking leisure time by creating high end meals to go making it easier to eat gourmet food without spending hours eating out or cooking at home.

Family-style dining: more restaurants will be serving meals family style with larger portions to share around the table.

Sources: McCormick and National Restaurant News

 

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Superfoods Recipes for a Healthy New Year

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Once the holidays are over, it’s time for a break from all the super rich food and cocktails and detox with some healthy recipes made with some of my favorite superfoods for a fresh start to a healthy New Year!

What’s all the fuss over superfoods about? They help step up your immunity, boost energy, slow down aging, lift your spirits, improve circulation, detox, improve sleep, and they have healing benefits too. And they just make you feel better and healthier all around. Colorful fruits and vegetables possess tons of vitamins and minerals – start ‘eating the rainbow’, and you’re off to a healthy start.

Veggie Bean Soup

The best way to get your fix of Superfoods is to make a big pot of veggie soup in the middle of winter, not only for it’s warming properties, but also because soup gives a big dose of healthy vegetables that boost the immune system, as well as detox and cleanse the body with its healthy ingredients, antibacterial properties, vitamins and minerals.

Simmer Soup KitchenAid Stockpot

I’ve created a super healthy soup recipe that I made with my KitchenAid 11-cup Food Processor, that is so convenient to chop, grate and shred all those lovely veggies. Then I just threw them all in my KitchenAid 8-Quart Stainless Steel Stockpot (part of the Stainless Steel 8-piece set that I just got!) to make a delicious and heartwarming Vegetable and Bean Soup. The Stockpot is great because it heats up fast on the stovetop to sauté all the veggies and seasonings and it has etched measurement markings inside the pot that make it easy to measure all the liquids for the soup.

Soup_Ingredients

My soup is full of onions, garlic and chicken stock, which all help build the immunity system and keep the colds away. It also has tons of fresh veggies including zucchini, kale, carrots, celery, sweet potatoes, tomatoes, and northern white beans topped with grated Parmesan cheese and extra virgin olive oil and some crusty whole wheat bread for dipping.

Kiwi Apple Berry Blast Smoothie

The New Year is also a great time to cleanse and detox by eating lots of healthy Superfood fruits! I love all berries that are full of antioxidants, with plenty of vitamins for a super boost in the morning.

Smoothie_Ingredients

I’ve created a delicious Kiwi Apple Berry Blast Smoothie recipe made with kiwi, apples, vanilla greek yogurt, almond milk, blueberries, acai berry puree, honey, lemon zest, flax seed and raw almonds.

Fruit and Almonds KitchenAid Diamond Blender

I simply threw all the ingredients into my powerhouse KitchenAid 5-Speed Diamond Blender with 5 different settings that does all the stirring, mixing, blending, pureeing and heavy lifting for me.And the smoothie is a healthy breakfast or snack, giving a big boost of protein and energy from the yogurt, almond milk, flax seeds and almonds; antioxidants from the berries and honey; and betacarotene, vitamin E and C from the kiwi fruit and lemon zest.

Click here to read the full post on the Kitchenthusiast blog by KitchenAid for more photos and recipes!

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