RECIPE ROUNDUP: Fresh Start to the New Year

detox collage The holidays are wonderful for a number of reasons. It's a special time of year when you can spend quality time with your family and friends, actually like it when it snows, and pretty much have a license to eat and drink in excess. But following all the roasts and the cookies and the cocktails, I like to change it up for the new year. Here is a day's worth of recipes that I think bring it back to the basics: food that is fresh, flavorful, healthy and delicious.

BREAKFAST: Avocado-Banana Smoothie

LUNCHPan-Seared Salmon with Cauliflower and Pine Nuts, and Broccolini and Sweet Sesame Salad

DINNERQuinoa, Fennel, and Pomegranate Salad

DESSERT: Roasted Pineapple Smoothie

RECIPE ROUNDUP: How to Host Your Own NYE Bash

NYE Collage What's a better way to ring in the new year than with good friends and good food? Here are some delicious dishes to make a special night even better. Start with an elegant Kir Royale and end with luscious chocolate tart paired with a champagne toast. It won't be a meal that you'll forget in 2014!

Kir Royale

Gravlax

Lobster Rolls with Pickled Asian Pears

Ethiopian-Spiced Duck Breast

Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Maple Bacon

Chocolate Raspberry Tart

RECIPE ROUNDUP: Joyous Kwanzaa!

kwanzaa collage
Kwanzaa began in the United States in 1966. During this time, there was a great movement toward equality for African-Americans, and Kwanzaa was created for African-Americans to celebrate African heritages and cultures. Kwanzaa is modeled on traditional African harvest festivals, and takes place from December 26 to January 1. Kwanzaa culminates in a feast on the sixth day called karamu, and the foods served during karamu honor African cuisines. Kwanzaa is all about celebrating family, community, and culture, making it the perfect time to host a feast—here are some suggestions to help you host your own Kwanzaa feast.
Joyous Kwanzaa!

STARTERS

Grilled Shrimp and Sausage Skewers with Dirty Rice

Kofta Meatballs with Okra Stew

Peanut Soup

MAINS

Chicken Jollof Rice

Blackened Catfish

SIDES

Spicy Okra and Greens

Cornbread

DESSERTS

Sweet Potato Pound Cake

Coconut Rice Pudding with Fried Bananas

RECIPE ROUNDUP: The Holiday Punch Bowl

holiday punch

Probably one of the oldest traditions around the holidays is the punch bowl, though its history started elsewhere.

Punch was the drink of sailors and seamen, who  started making punch as early as the 17th century during ocean-crossing journeys that brought them into warm waters. History books claim that the warm temperatures of the tropics would turn the sailors' beer flat and rancid, so they were forced to become resourceful with their booze. They turned to the ingredients that were indigenious to their destinations; rum, spices and tropical fruit. What resulted is one of the most celebratory genres of food and drink.

Here are a few punch favorites, hot and cold, that will undoubtedly impress your holiday guests and keep them toasty all night long!

HOT PUNCH

Tom & Jerry

Snowbird Punch

COLD PUNCH

Pomegranate Sparkler

Cran-Ginger Swizzle

RECIPE ROUNDUP: Six Great Holiday Hors D'oeuvres and Cocktails Pairings

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'Tis the season to eat, drink, and be merry, and we're here to help. Here are recipes for drinks hot and cold, along with bites to complement them perfectly. Impress your friends with these great hors d'oeuvre and cocktail pairings, and we promise merriness will naturally follow.

WARM AND COMFORTING EAT: Bacon-Lingonberry Gougeres DRINK: Glogg

SWEET AND SPICY EAT: Jalapeno Cornbread DRINK: Spiked Hot Chocolate

EARTHY AND ROBUST EAT: Mushroom and Fontina Crostini DRINK: Mulled Cider

HEARTY AND BOLD EAT: Korean Short Ribs DRINK: Persimmon Smash

LIGHT AND CRISP EAT: Tuna Tartare with Potato Pancakes DRINK: The Thymely Dalmatian

RICH AND LUXE EAT: Chocolate Bourbon Truffles DRINK: The Red Rooster Mistletoe