When it comes to holiday hosting, I like to keep a few go-to holiday recipes and tricks in my back pocket so that I’m ready to entertain within a moment’s notice. I’ve shared a few of my favorite hacks and a tasty holiday dessert recipe in the most recent issue of Family Circle Magazine, and wanted to add a few more here to help you prep for the busy hosting season ahead! read more

When my cookbook first came out last month, my sister gave me the most thoughtful present to celebrate the occasion. She had asked tons of my closest friends and family to write me a note or recall a memory of me, and she shared all of the anecdotes in a book for me to read the day before the book launched. It was probably the nicest thing anyone has ever done for me! In the collection of notes, three separate people mentioned how much they loved a recipe I wrote years ago for a mixed scallop potatoes dish. I have to admit that I didn’t even remember the recipe! I had to back into the archives and read it, and once I did I remembered instantly how tasty it was. I decided to take that concept and give it a refresh with just sweet potatoes this time, and bit of a different look — it still has all of that great, rich creamy flavor though because the holidays are not a time to be counting calories. Get the full recipe below. read more

Stuffing is one of the highlights of Thanksgiving dinner table at our house. I love it; and we’ve gotten in the habit of making two types to ensure that there are leftovers. One classic stuffing with the store-bought mix (because that stuff is so darn good in a turkey sandwich the day after the holiday) and one stuffing that has some special mix-ins. I’ve made it with sage and squash, with sausage and apples, and this year I thought it would be fun to give our stuffing some major flavor with Everything Bagel seasoning.  The base of the stuffing is made with a mix of corn bread and white bread, and it gets tons of seasonal flavor from onions, sage, parsley and celery seed. The everything bagel seasoning on top gives it texture and a salty bite — it’ll be a hit on your Thanksgiving table. Get the recipe below: read more

We are celebrating Thanksgiving with my side of the family this year, and while I won’t host it at my house, I do most of the cooking! My mom and I were starting to brainstorm the menu and she mentioned the holiday staple: green bean casserole. I admired to her that while I love the creamy sauce and French’s crispy onions on top, I didn’t care much for the actual green beans. I had a lightbulb moment and thought, what if I took those flavors I loved from the green bean casserole, and mixed them into spinach for a bit of a hybrid dish. It’s one part creamed spinach, one part green bean casserole, and I still get plenty of those crispy, salty French’s onions — they’re a tradition I’ll never break! Get the recipe below: read more

The Thanksgiving recipe bonanza continues this week with an easy to make holiday sangria. I’m a big proponent of batch cocktails for entertaining because they’re great for the host so that you can prep them ahead of time and guest can serve themselves. They’re also great for guests, because it takes some of the guesswork out of deciding what to drink. Whenever I serve a signature cocktail it’s almost always the option guests pick to drink. I get this prepped in the morning, and then it’s ready to serve over ice when everyone arrives; it’s a perfect precursor to enjoy with some light snacks before the main event starts. Get the recipe below (PS: if you’re looking for more Thanksgiving recipes, my cookbook New England Invite has a whole chapter dedicated to the holiday!). read more

We just came up on our 3-year anniversary of living in our house! It’s crazy to look around and see how far we’ve come. We converted a room that was a hair salon into my office (yes, really!), we took a kitchenette out of our master bedroom and replaced it with a wall of closets, and we removed a LOT of wallpaper and painted a LOT of wood paneling. After a ton of these big projects, what are left are lots of little projects that are much easier to ignore. I attempted to tackle one of those smaller projects on a rare free weekend recently: our back-door entryway. read more

Today kicks off two weeks of non-stop brand new Thanksgiving recipes! I’m so excited to share all of these dishes with you. There are 10 new recipes, hosting ideas, turkey tips, and lots of tasty ideas coming out of the archives. I’m starting with what I think is the most important side dish of all: mashed potatoes. Forget the turkey, we’re all here for the buttery, creamy, fluffy potatoes. This version is an update on my classic mashed potato recipe, but made new with the flavorful addition of tons of soft cloves of roasted garlic and sweet caramelized shallots. Get the full recipe below. (And PS: If you’re looking for more Thanksgiving recipes, my cookbook New England Invite has a whole chapter dedicated to the holiday menu!) read more

The holiday season is coming at us fast! It tends to be my busiest time of year, since I write so much about food and entertaining. In fact, over here in blogger-land, I’m actually already in the midst of it – ‘tis the season for recipe testing and gift guide sourcing and prepping holiday content. I sometimes find that I spend so much time working on creative holiday ideas for my blog, that I don’t leave enough time to actually focus on slowing down to enjoy the holidays. I’m trying to change that this year — knowing just how precious this time is with little kids – and was putting some thought into how I can make it feel special. read more

You know I love a good theme. In fact the only thing I love more than a good theme, is to bring that theme to life with fun food ideas. Weekend football viewing is sort of a big deal around here, and so I’m always thinking of fun ways to make snacks for these cozy fall gatherings around the TV (and then I store all of these ideas up for that realllly big football game that happens in February so you guys can make them at home!). I have a new one to add to my files that I can’t wait to share with you here today – mini football crab bites! I mean, these are pretty darn cute, right?

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It’s that time of year in New England that the weather gets a little cooler, the sun sets a little earlier and we find ourselves spending a lot more time indoors (which can make you feel a little crazy if you live with a toddler!). I have been trying to see the bright side of the impending hibernations months though, and have been finding some fun activities for us to do indoors. One of those activities is to is cozy up on the couch and watch a good movie. Of course the best part of movie night is always the snacks. Since I like to go-big-or-go-home when it comes to any kind of snacks, I am all about finding ways to take my movie-viewing snack choices to the next level. I got to try some of Angie’s BOOMCHICKAPOP new microwave popcorn and thought it would be the perfect opportunity to try out some of my ideas for a DIY movie night popcorn bar. read more