The holiday season is upon us, and if you're one of those people who likes to wait to the last minute to plan events, you're not alone. But fear not: Jessica Holmes shares her quick and easy tips to make your gathering appear as if you spent hours putting it together.
For starters, get some fresh cut greens and add a string of twinkling lights to them -- it will instantly make the place look more festive. Red roses and candles add a nice bit of ambiance; candy canes and Hanukkah gelt are also a nice holiday touch.
Next, Jessica recommends going to the store to pick up some easy ingredients, and then whip up an easy recipe -- like the ones below for festive flatbread, white chocolate peppermint madeleines and tomato mozzarella appetizer -- to make it look like you spent all day on it.
And of course -- don't forget the champagne!
This segment aired on KTLA's California Cooking: Episode 13.
- Package of pre-made pizza crust, like the one from Trader Joe's
- Mascarpone cheese
- Fontina cheese, grated
- Cranberry sauce
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
- Drizzle the bread with olive oil and place on a baking sheet.
- Spread the bread with mascarpone cheese and smear it from edge to edge.
- Spread the grated fontina cheese on the bread.
- Add dollops of the cranberry sauce.
- Sprinkle with some of the rosemary.
- Cook in the oven for approximately 5 to 8 minutes.
- If you want a crisp bottom, skip the baking sheet and put the bread directly on oven rack.
- Happy holiday entertaining!
White Chocolate Peppermint Madeleines
- White chocolate chips
- Candy canes
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil
- Add water to a saucepan and bring to a simmer.
- Place a heat-safe bowl on top of the pot so the bowl is not touching the water.
- Put the white chocolate chips in the bowl and melt.
- Add the coconut oil to almost melted white chocolate chips.
- Turn heat off once melted.
- Dip half of the madeleine cookie in white chocolate.
- Sprinkle with crushed candy cane pieces.
- Happy Holidays!
Tomato and Mozzarella Bites
- Sundried tomatoes soaked in oil
- Baby mozzarella balls
- Festive toothpicks
- Cut bottoms off the mozzarella balls so they will stand up.
- Skewer the basil, sundried tomato, then the cut mozzarella ball.
Eggnog Whipped Cream
- 1/4 cup of eggnog
- 8 oz. heavy whipping cream
- 1 tablespoon fine sugar
- Using a stand or hand mixer, whip the heavy whipping cream.
- Add the fine sugar.
- Once whipped cream is almost done -- when stiff peaks start to form -- add the eggnog.