All the Trimmings
Create memorable meals this holiday season
Tis the season to eat and be merry. Whether you’re hosting a traditional family potluck or cookie exchange with friends, here are some tips on making and storing your masterpieces for the celebrations, including a scrumptious recipe to help you get started.
Pick the perfect dish
At potlucks you’ll want to wow the crowd with your culinary prowess, but now’s probably not the best time to attempt a complicated dish that you’ve never made before. Instead, make something from your usual repertoire that’s received rave reviews from your family (or at least requests for second helpings). It might be your famous Tuna Noodle Casserole, Red Potato Salad or Mediterranean Couscous. It could even be something a bit more simplistic, yet surprisingly flavorful, like a colorful multi-layer appetizer dip.
Easy Find Lids™ are ideal for the holiday party. They’re attractive enough to serve in, and as a host who’ll be receiving plenty of dishes from guests, you’ll appreciate that they don’t occupy precious space on the buffet. Just pull off the top and take it to the table, then simply snap the lid onto the base of the container so it doesn’t get lost in the shuffle. At the end of the evening, when everyone else is hunting for their tableware, you can cheerily say your goodbyes and tidy up.
Each cookie exchange’s rules can vary but, generally, the host invites guests (numbers can range from six and up) to each bake at least a dozen cookies of their choice to share with the other attendees, who will also have baked dozens of treats to trade. So, yes, you’ll likely have to bake at least six-dozen sweets, but don’t despair; most cookie recipes yield several dozen morsels, so you’ll typically only have to make about three batches.
If you are hosting a cookie exchange, divide the biscuits beforehand and put them into TakeAlong containers. Wrapped with pretty ribbons and bows they’ll make a beautiful and practical presentation. The small deep square and large deep square are the perfect size for baked treats, and their Quik Clik seal lids will keep cookies fresher longer… even though your delicious cookies will surely be devoured instantly.
If you’re taking your fare a la mode, it’s essential to keep in mind that the food should travel well, especially if you’re expecting a long, bumpy ride. Pots of food can be heavy and cumbersome to carry, and delicate dishes may accidentally get broken during transportation or at the party, so your fine china platter should definitely stay at home. It’s also important, both for food safety and appetite appeal, that your traveling munchies maintain their proper temperature, especially if dishes vie for fridge space and oven time at their destination.
For extra security when transporting food, look no further than Rubbermaid Lock-its containers. With a built-in rubberized seal and four locking tabs, Rubbermaid Lock-its lids will stay securely on the container. For neat and organized cabinet storage, the lids also snap to the base and to each other so you can always find the right lid. Rubbermaid Lock-Its containers are safe for microwave, dishwater and freezer.
Classic Shortbread Cookies
Customize these traditional sweet treats with colored sugar and icing, or leave them unadorned so their natural beauty shines through.
To make 3 dozen, you’ll need:
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cups butter
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- Preheat oven to 350 °F. Wisk flour and salt in a medium bowl. Beat in butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Mix in vanilla and gradually sift in flour mixture until dough comes together.
- Spoon teaspoons of dough onto an un-greased cookie sheet, leaving 2 inches between cookies. For a smooth decorating surface, flatten the dough balls out with the bottom of a drinking glass. Bake cookies for 18 to 20 minutes or until bottoms are golden brown. Remove from cookie sheet and cool on wire racks.