‘Tis the season to get out and enjoy a full slate of holiday fun and favorites, from “A Christmas Carol” and “The Nutcracker” to Santa time and soirees.
HOLIDAY APPS ARE A SNAP
SWEET PEPPERS STUFFED WITH CHEESE: Slice mini sweet peppers in half and stuff with creamy goat cheese. Sprinkle with minced fresh parsley, salt and freshly ground pepper. Drizzle with olive oil and bake at 400 degrees for 10 minutes.
CHEESE STRAWS: Roll out a sheet of puff pastry to 10”x12.” Brush with a lightly beaten egg mixed with 1 tablespoon of milk. Sprinkle with ½ cup of grated parmesan or gruyere cheese. Sprinkle with salt and freshly ground pepper. Slice dough into 12-14 strips. Twist each strip and lay on a lined baking sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 10-15 minutes until light golden-brown, turning each stick over three-quarters of the way through baking time.
CHICKEN SATAY: Cut chicken breast into approximately 1-inch cubes. Marinate in purchased peanut satay sauce for 1 hour (reserve 1 cup for serving) while soaking short bamboo skewers in water. Thread chicken on skewers and bake at 375 degrees for 20-30 minutes until chicken is cooked through. Serve warm with reserved satay sauce.
CRUNCHY ROASTED CHICKPEAS: Rinse a 28-ounce can of chickpeas and pour onto a towel-lined baking sheet. Rub lightly to remove skins, then let beans dry. Toss with 1-2 tablespoons olive oil and bake at 425 degrees for 30-40 minutes until golden and crunchy. Toss with salt and favorite spice blend.
– Anna Thomas Bates
THROW IN THE (KITCHEN) TOWEL
Indo Mac & Cheese at Bandung Indonesian Restaurant is a grown-up nod to every kid’s favorite side: Thick rice noodles, green and yellow onion, bamboo shoots and mushrooms are stir fried in a creamy red curry. And your family will feud with forks over the Ikan Rica Rica: Mahi Mahi is lightly battered and pan fried, then served over steamed vegetables, tomatoes, ginger and sambal, with a candlenut sauce that’s slightly sweet, slightly spicy and downright addictive.
Lettuce wraps get gussied up for the holidays at Heritage Tavern,where roast Heritage pig shoulder, black-fin tuna sashimi, fried headcheese, pickled ginger and caramelized market vegetables are accompanied by ssamjang, truffled fish sauce and crisp lettuce cups. For those seeking seafood, the peanut-oil-fried whole snapper with lobster, coconut red curry sauce, market vegetables, sticky rice and scallions is a catch—and perfect for a pair to share.
– Corey Dane, Madison’s community director for Yelp.com