Winter is the best time to gather friends and explore the splendor of the great indoors. The season’s cold weather also provides a convenient excuse to attempt any comforting dish or drink you can think of. Can you see your breath because it’s so cold? Probably best to warm up with a rib roast and a bottle of red. Is there a foot of snow outside? Might as well batch margaritas, whip up homemade salsa verde, and pretend that ever-growing snowbank is a sand dune. Here are 50 of our favorite recipes for winter hosting, when temperatures are chilly and living rooms are extra cozy. From Our Shop 1. Mid-Winter Margarita Winter is for citrus and citrus is happiest when keeping tequila company. Start your gathering with this simple winter margarita and serve something crunchy and salty to snack on. 2. Winter Citrus Rum Punch If a margarita doesn’t satisfy your winter citrus craving, a punch that includes grapefruit, orange, lemon, and lime juice should do the trick. Bonus: This recipe serves a crowd. 3. Horseradish Vodka Bloody Mary If you’re getting together with friends for a long weekend, batch this bloody mary mix beforehand and your puffy eyed, Sunday morning self will be better for it. 4. Bourbon, Orange, & Ginger Come for the bourbon, stay for the ginger-infused simple syrup. (You’ll want it around for adding to future sips, too.) 5. Dirty Chai Toddy A dirty chai with a shot of bourbon? Absolutely. 6. Cardamom Hot Chocolate Cardamom and a teaspoon of butter give this hot chocolate a rich, warming flavor that’ll restore you and your friends
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Photo by Julia Gartland January 2023 has officially come to a close, which means it’s time to round up your favorite meals (and drinks!) from the past month. From cozy soups and stews galore to bright, citrusy cakes, we reached peak winter cooking in January. In no particular order, here are last month’s 10 most popular new recipes. 1. One-Bowl Lemon Cake With Citrus Glaze Ricotta cheese adds an extra layer of richness to this super-simple snacking cake. Pair it with your afternoon coffee or tea for a sweet treat, or eat it any time of day your heart desires. 2. Mushroom Chowder With Crispy Mushroom Bacon This cr
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I don’t always want to cook—cue shock, horror, and “but you work in food media, that’s your thing"—but I don’t. Just like, I’m sure, you don’t either. When this mood strikes, sometimes egg tacos or avocado toast will suffice. Other times, you don’t want to cook but you do want a real, home-cooked dinner. I'm here to tell you that, in fact, you can have it both ways. You just need a little help from your freezer. These 10 meals can be made-ahead, frozen, thawed, and reheated for when you just can’t in the kitchen. Below, I’ve also suggested fresh plus ones to make along side your frozen food. However, you can totally just make the main dish and leave the sides aside (ha!). And, if you’re new to freezer-friendly foods or just skeptical about what should and shouldn’t be frozen, check out this guide. From Our Shop 1. Soup & Biscuits Need help with defrosting your soup (or help finding the best soup recipe)? We've got you covered in this step-by-step guide. For how to freeze and cook biscuits, see here. To really make a meal of it, add a fresh dollop of yogurt for on top of the soup. 2. Dumplings & XO Sauce If you need help freezing your dumplings, we've got a guide for that. For how to cook said frozen dumplings see here. For freezing the XO Sauce, let it cool and portion it into ice cube trays, so you don’t end up with a big ol’ frozen block of un-portionable, un-scoopable sauce. After the cubes are frozen, transfer to a freezer bag. When you’re ready to cook, you can thaw the sauce in the fridge or just throw it right into some stir-fried vegetables to thaw and cook. 3. Meatballs & Sauce Cook the sauce as the recipe states and let cool completely before portioning into freezer bags and placing in the freezer. To thaw, place the bags of sauce on a plate or bowl (no spillage!) and leave in the refrigerator for 4 to 5 hours. The sauce probably won’t be completely cooled by then, but that’s okay! Just put it into a pot, turn the heat on, and that’ll do the trick. For the meatballs, cook as the recipe states. Let cool, then place, separated, on a parchment-covered sheet pan and into the freezer to freeze. Once frozen, put them in a freezer bag. To reheat the meatballs, place into your pot of thawed tomato sauce and simmer until warmed through. Looking to level-up your frozen meal? It’s meatball sub time. Grab a baguette (or, if you’re feeling ambitious make one and freeze that, too), fresh mozzarella, and pepperoncini—and the meatballs and tomato sauce, of course!—and get to layering your subs. 4. Enchilada Casserole & Black Beans Assemble the casserole and cover very well with aluminum foil and secure the foil’s edges with tape. To cook, you have two options: Thaw in the fridge overnight and bake as described in the recipe or place directly into the oven, without thawing, knowing you’ll need about 15 minutes or more of extra cooking time (if you see yourself doing the former, use an aluminum pan to avoid any glass shattering). To freeze and thaw beans, cook and follow the same instructions for the tomato sauce. For a fresh element, add sliced avocado and chopped cilantro to the casserole when it's time to serve. 5. Chicken Fingers & Sweet Potato Fries After breading the chicken fingers (but before baking), place onto a parchment-lined baking sheet and into the freezer. Freeze until frozen, then place into a freezer bag. When ready to cook, arrange on a baking rack set on a baking sheet, drizzle with oil, and bake at 425°F for about 25 minutes, or until cooked through. For the sweet potato fries, cook the fries as directed and let cool completely. Place on a parchment-lined sheet pan and into the freezer. Once frozen, you can transfer them to a freezer bag. To cook, place onto a parchment-lined sheen pan and pop them into the oven (at 425°F, so the same as the chicken fingers) for about 10 minutes, or until they’re warmed through. Ketchup and/or ranch dressing are a must for dipping the chicken fingers. For a fresh green thing, serve a salad on the side. 6. Samosas & Dal After filling and forming your samosas, place onto a parchment-lined sheet pan and pop into the freezer. Once frozen, transfer to a freezer bag. When ready to bake, place once again on a parchment-lined sheet pan and cook as directed in the recipe, adding on a few more minutes to account for the samosas being frozen. For the dal, cook as the recipe states, let cool, and follow the same freezing and thawing instructions as the tomato sauce. When it's time to eat, make a pot of rice for the dal, and some sort of vegetable (perhaps Steam-Roasted Carrots with Cumin?). 7. Chili & Cornbread Cook the chili as the recipe says to, let cool, and follow the same freezing and thawing instructions as the tomato sauce. For the cornbread, cook as directed and follow the freezing and thawing instructions here. For serving, prep whatever fixin’s you like adding to your chili—diced red onions, sour cream, grated cheese, chopped cilantro, and pickled jalapeños are my faves. Meal 8: Chicken Stock & Leftover Roast Chicken Make the chicken stock, let cool completely, portion into freezer bags, and freeze. Put the chicken stock in a pot and turn the heat on low, stirring occasionally to break up the stock. Heat until thawed and at a simmer. For the chicken, once cool, shred some of that roasted bird and place into freezer bags and freeze. If you had the foresight to thaw your chicken in the fridge the night before, great! If not, add it right to the pot (that’s why you shredded it). Stock + chicken = chicken noodle soup. Grab some noodles, frozen peas, chopped celery, and peeled, thinly sliced carrots (on the bias, if you like). If you’re unsure of how to make chicken noodle soup, here’s a good guide. Right before serving, throw in some minced parsley and a smattering of freshly ground black pepper. 9. Chicken Tamale Pie & Salsa Follow the casserole freezing, thawing, and cooking (following the time and temperature directions in the pie's recipes) instructions as described for the Vegan Enchilada Casserole. For the salsa, cook and let cool. Then, portion it into freezer bags and freeze. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator or, in a pinch, in a bowl of cold water, refreshing the water several times until thawed. A side of guacamole and chips are great fresh additions for when it comes time to serve. And perhaps a green salad, too, dressed with a spicy lime vinaigrette. 10. Mac & Cheese Cook as stated, let cool, and cover with aluminum foil, sealing the edges with tape. Place into the freezer. When ready to cook, thaw overnight in the refrigerator and reheat at 375°F until warmed through.
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This post contains products independently chosen (and loved) by our editors and writers. Food52 earns an affiliate commission on qualifying purchases of the products we link to. Building out an at-home bar can quickly become overwhelming. If you’re not a bartender or someone who knows the ins and outs of cocktails and mixology, the process can go from being a fun task to a chore in minutes. Which liquors should you always have on hand? Are there specific tools that are better than others? What about garnishes—are they really necessary? To answer some of these questions, we spoke with bartenders across the country about their best tips and tricks for an ideal at-home bar setup and some simple mistakes to avoid. The first piece of advice? Steer clear of pre-curated bartending kits. “The quality is almost always lacking,” Marisa Campbell, a bartender in Rogers, Arkansas, says. “It’s better to buy individual pieces you admire and slowly build your collection to your likes and dislikes.” Campbell’s ideal at-home bar cart is perfect for anyone with enough space for a well-rounded and robust setup. It includes both a mesh strainer and a julep strainer, a bar spoon, a Y-shaped peeler for citrus peels, a channel knife for citrus twists, and a Japanese-style precision jigger because they’re more accurate (and elegant) than others. When choosing a shaker, Campbell prefers a Boston-style shaker with a tin-on-tin design (as opposed to glass-on-tin) because it’s easy to use. “The cobbler-style shaker has the plus of a built-in strainer, but even I have difficulty breaking the seal to get them apart sometimes and there are more pieces to clean,” she explains. Brooks Moyer, a bartender in Brooklyn, New York, agrees that a Boston-style shaker is the way to go. “As long as you know how to seal the tins before shaking, there’s minimal mess, plenty of space in the tins for multiple drinks, and one tin can serve as a little mixing glass for stirred cocktails.” Like Campbell, he also prefers the Japanese-style jiggers for measuring—but notes that any measuring device that's as
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Photo by Ty Mecham This post contains products independently chosen (and loved) by our editors and writers. Food52 earns an affiliate commission on qualifying purchases of the products we link to. There are two types of people in this world: those who love to host and those who prefer to be a
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Photo by Photographs copyright © 2023 by Laura Murray. Published by Abrams. This post contains products independently chosen (and loved) by our editors and writers. Food52 earns an affiliate commission on qualifying purchases of the products we link to. If you live in North Brooklyn, chances are you’ve already heard of Win Son
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The story of Black History Month begins in 1915 when Dr. Carter G. Woodson—a scholar, historian, and author known as the “Father of Black History”—helped found what is known today as the Association for the Study of African American Life and History. In 1926, Woodson and the association launched an effort to celebrate and encourage the teaching of the history of Black Americans in the nation’s public schools and communities. What began as a week of observance expanded into a month, and since 1976 February has been a time dedicated to honoring the past, present, and future of Black contributions—rich with innovation and brilliance—to American history. Eat the Culture was established to create community-centered spaces that nurture, support, and amplify Black culinary creators. In addition to collaborations like the Black History Month Virtual Potluck, we offer educational resources, virtual courses, and live events to elevate creatives and highlight the culinary heritage across the African diaspora. For Black History Month 2023, Eat the Culture is examining the journey and evolution of different dishes from Africa to North America and beyond. Our goal is to show threads of connection through Black culture and food as a nuanced celebration of joy, resilience, and resistance. Our food is magic and medicine. Our ancestors physically and mentally carried African foodways across the deadly Middle Passage to pass them down through generations. With that framework at the heart of this year’s potluck, 29 recipes from amazing Black culinary creatives take you on a food journey spanning various corners of the African continent—showcasing how those dishes, ingredients, and cooking styles evolved as they traveled to the Americas and the Caribbean. “A large part of my food blogging journey has been to explore how my personal history is connected to the African diaspora,” says Geo Banks-Weston, a creator participating this year. “These potlucks and virtual cookouts have created invaluable opportunities for me to do just that. I'm always amazed by just how much I learn about myself, and about Black food history through participation in the collaborations, and I hope that through my own work I am able to provide some level of education to others.” There is an Africa
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Photo by Bobbi Lin My childhood smelled of maple syrup. After discovering the TikTok-induced reemergence of freezing pancake batter in ice cube trays, my days may once again become maple-scented. Back in a time when there was a clear distinction between good (eating pancakes) and evil (learning math), the classrooms, school buses, and friends I knew almost always smelled like an iHop. Also, everything—and everyone—was always sticky. For whatever reason, as I got older, the pancakes, maple syrup, and stickiness in my life vanished. I’m hoping this TikTok pancake hack will change that. The process is straightforward: make a standard pancake batter, pour it into ice cube trays, add toppings (like blueberries, chocolate chips, or bananas), and keep it frozen until you are ready for homemade pancakes sans measuring, whisking, or excess cleaning. When you’re craving pancakes, pop out a few cubes of batter onto an oiled pan over low heat. Flip once and serve. While meal prepping doesn’t typically excite me, I do appreciate how this technique gives you an opportunity to preserve fruit that may be on its last legs. If you’ve got a couple of berries hanging around (or perhaps a single, nearly-all-brown banana) throw them into the batter cube instead of the trash can. Also—as noted in the comments of the video above—the batter can last in the freezer for up to three months, but is best eaten within a month of its initial freezing. So, if you do love how these hold up over time, it’s entirely possible that the fifteen minutes it takes to mix the batter and pour it into cubes might be all the breakfast prep you’d need for the next month. More than anything, I love how preparing these frozen pancakes is a passive exercise. Since they go slowly over low heat (about 3 minutes per side), you’re able to work on other morning tasks (make coffee, think about drinking a glass of water, make more coffee) while the pancakes cook. Let us know if you’ll be trying this breakfast hack in the comments below! From Our Shop Editorial Intern @ Food52
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