Holiday Recipes

Holiday RecipesWe asked some of our great cooks at Ballard, as well as some of our Facebook fans, for their favorite Holiday Recipes. Here are a few of our favorites.

More to come as the season progresses, so check back for even more delicious recipes!

Holiday Popovers
Steve, E-Commerce Marketing Manager

  • 1 lb pork breakfast sausage
  • 1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced fresh thyme leaves
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

Grease a 1/2 inch miniature muffin cup pan and set aside. Preheat oven to 400 F. Heat a large skillet with 1/4 cup water. Add sausage and fry over medium-high skillet until well browned and cooked through (about 8 – 10 minutes). Break up meat into pieces with a large fork or spatula while frying. Drain sausage on paper towels.

In a medium bowl combine flour, salt, pepper, and thyme. In another bowl, combine eggs, milk, buttermilk and melted butter. Make a well in a flour mixture. Add liquid ingredients and whisk slowly together until well combined. Batter may be slightly lumpy, which is ok. Fill muffin cups 1/4 full of batter. Place small piece of sausage on top of batter and fill to top with more batter. Bake until browned (about 20 minutes). Serve immediately. Makes 4 dozen popovers.

Variation: You could add ham chunks or ground turkey to these. I have never tried it with cheese, although I have been tempted to experiment with brown sugar crumbles, which would require cinnimon in the mix instead of thyme and ground pepper.

Holiday Cocktail
Karen, VP of Creative Services

  • 1 half gallon milk
  • 1 quart ice milk (melted)
  • 1 1/2 cups rum
  • 1/2 cup brandy
  • 2 Tbs. vanilla
  • 3/4 cup sugar (dissolve in a little boiling water)
  • Nutmeg

To make stronger use 2 cups of rum and 3/4 cup brandy.

Holiday Bruschetta
Lori, Inventory Control Buyer

  • 6 to 8 oz. feta cheese (I prefer French Feta Cheese)
  • 4 Tbsp. Pesto (I make my own, recipe to follow – but store bought is fine)
  • 5 to 6 roma tomatoes diced
  • Crackers or thinly sliced French bread

Layer cheese, pesto and tomatoes in a baking dish. Broil 5 to 7 minutes or until hot.
Serve warm with crackers or bread.

Pesto Recipe

  • 2 Tbsp pine nuts
  • 1 to 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • Coarse kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 1/4 cups fresh basil leasves
  • 2 oz. Parmesan cheese grated
  • 2 oz. Pecorino cheese grated
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

Place the pine nuts, garlic, salt and pepper, basil and cheese in food processor. Pulse to chop basil. With the machine running, add the oil gradually and process until creamy and smooth.

Bacon Wrapped Water Chestnuts
Jennifer, Facebook Fan

  • Ramki
  • Whole water chestnuts
  • Bacon
  • Brown sugar

Wrap whole chestnuts in bacon and secure with a toothpick. Sprinkle with brown sugar. Bake at 350 for 15 to 20 minutes until carmelized.

Cheese Bake
Chardon, Facebook Fan

  • 1 wedge of Brie Cheese
  • Bronco Billy’s Chipolte Cherry Sauce BBQ
  • Pecans

Bake at 350 degrees until cheese is melted then serve with crackers.

Baked Brie with Puff Pastry
Melanie, Facebook Fan

  • 1 wheel of brie (7 inches or so – even half a brie wheel will do)
  • 3/4 cup apricot preserves
  • 1/8 cup bacon, fried & chopped (about 3 pieces)
  • 1/8 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 package frozen puff pastry, thawed
  • Kitchen string

Set oven to 400 degrees. Prepare a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Remove the rind of the brie wheel, use a paring knife for ease. Roll out the puff pastry. It should be about 1/8 inch thick when rolled. Set your brie wheel in the center of pastry. Plop the apricot preserves on the brie, then the bacon on the preserves. Pull up corners of brie to create a “pouch” and tie a 10 inch or so piece of kitchen string around the neck of the pouch. Don’t pull too tightly as the string may cut through the pastry. Allow the dough to fall over the string, it will look loose and leafy. Set the pouch on cookie sheet. Brush the pastry with heavy cream. If you don’t have cream available, use an egg whipped with a tablespoon of water instead as your wash. Bake in a 400 degree oven for 20-30 minutes. The exterior should be golden brown and look puffed. If you are not baking immediately, refrigerate the brie pouch until ready. This dough should always be kept cool, as it will “puff” better. Let rest for about 8 minutes before serving.

Fresh Apple Cake
Dina, Facebook Fan

  • 3 cups chopped apples
  • 1 cup nuts
  • 1 cup oil
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 large eggs (or 3 small eggs)

Mix apples and nuts together and set aside. Mix oil and sugar together and set aside. Mix eggs and vanilla together, then add to oil/sugar mixture. Add apples and nuts. (Recipe does not call for raisins but I throw some in.)

Bake in greased/floured bundt pan at 350 for 55-60 minutes. Drizzle with glaze if desired.

Candy-Filled Cookies
Karen, Style Studio Fan

These cookies are one of my favorite cookies to make for Christmas. The original recipe called for Rolo’s as the inside filling. I’ve also tried mini peanut butter cups (my favorite candy). Feel free to try your favorite candy filling.

  • 1 cup butter or margarine, softened
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 cup chopped nuts
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 48 Rolo’s

Beat butter or margarine until creamy. Gradually add sugars, beat well. Add eggs and vanilla, beat well. Combine flour, baking soda and cocoa. Gradually add to butter mixture, beating well. Stir in 1/2 cup nuts (optional).

Cover and chill at least 2 hours. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).

Combine remaining 1/2 cup nuts with the 1 tablespoon granulated sugar. Divide the dough into 4 parts. Work with one part at a time leaving the rest in the fridge. Divide each part into 12 pieces. Quickly press each piece of dough around a Rolo. Roll into a ball. Dip one side into the nut and sugar mixture.

Place sugar side up 2 inches apart on parchment covered baking sheets. Bake for 8 minutes. Let cool one minute. Remove to wire rack and cool completely.

Yields about 4 dozen cookies.

What’s In This?
Jane, Style Studio Content Manager

  • 1 cup Mayonnaise
  • 1 cup chopped black olives
  • 1 cup chopped green onions
  • 1 cup grated cheddar cheese
  • 1 teaspoon curry

Spoon mixture onto buttered (lightly broiled) English Muffin halves, place under broiler until they bubble and cheese has melted!

Posted 11/2/09

How to Decorate Team

We enjoy spending days interacting with How to Decorate readers. From answering Design Dilemmas to writing How To articles and working with guest designers, our passion is to provide informative and accurate resources to help people solve their design problems.


  1. Reply

    December 27, 2009

    OMG Steve, just this morning I made these popovers! My family loved them!! Added cheese to the last 2 dozen and they were delicious. The challenge: getting them out of the pan, The melted cheese formed a super glue. Thans for the recipe!!!!
    glenda, dallas, tx

  2. Reply

    Style Studio Team

    December 14, 2009

    We double checked with Steve and the Popover Recipe calls for 1/2 cup of milk and 1/2 cup of buttermilk. We made the corrections in the recipe itself. Let us know how the popovers turn out! They do sound delicious……
    The Style Studio Team

  3. Reply

    December 10, 2009

    YUM, Steve’s recipe for POPOVERS sounds great! Can’t wait to bake and try!
    Does this recipe have milk and buttermilk or just the buttermilk.
    The list says just buttermilk but the directions say both. Just wanted to clarify b/f baking!
    This sounds like a KEEPER for the holidays, a gift item and for holiday guests.
    I assume you can bake ahead and then warm these little treats up for later.
    Thank you, Steve!