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Holiday Gift Guide NOVEMBER 2016

Gift Ideas

Recipes for the holiday season Published by:


2 — Holiday Gift Guide  |  November 2016

Tips for first-time holiday dinner hosts · Ask about food allergies. While hosts don't need to cater to every food allergy under the sun, ask each guest if there is any particular food or ingredient they absolutely must avoid. If enough guests admit they must avoid a particular dish, you then know not to prepare it. In addition, have plenty of vegetables on hand for guests who are vegan or vegetarian. Holiday hosting is fun, and first-time hosts can make it even more fun by employing a few veteran tricks of the trade.

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ost i n g a hol id ay meal for loved ones provides an exciting opportunity to bring family and friends together during a special time of year. Firsttime hosts may be a little nervous and put pressure on themselves to make the meal just right. But there are a few tricks of the trade novices can employ to calm their nerves and enjoy their first foray into holiday hosting.

when hosting for the holidays. When planning the menu for your holiday dinner, choose a main course that you have prepared in the past. Familiarity can calm your nerves, and you're less likely to forget key ingredients when preparing a meal you have made several times in the past. If you want to experiment a little, do so with desserts that you can prepare and test for taste several days in advance. If the desserts don't pan out, you will still have a few days to find an alternative.

· Double check your pantry. Even if you're making a meal you have made a dozen times in the past, peruse your pantry to make sure you have every ingredient you're going to need. If you're used to making the meal for four people but will now be making the meal for 12 of them, make sure you have enough of each ingredient to make the meal in bulk. To make things easier, update your recipe to reflect the additional guests before going to the grocery store. Doing so guarantees you won't run out of · G e t a he ad s t a r t whe reve r ingredients once you start preparing possible. The day friends and family the meal. are coming to visit figures to be hectic. · Ask guests to bring nonessential In addition to preparing the meal, hosts items. Guests will likely offer to bring must also ready their homes so they can something to the holiday dinner, and create a welcoming environment for there's nothing wrong with accepting their guests. Once you have chosen the help. But don't ask guests to bring items menu, look for items that can be pre- that are essential to the meal, as that can pared in advance of the big day. Des- delay the meal if guests get stuck in trafserts can often be made several days in fic or show up late. Instead, ask guests to · Go with what you know. Experi- advance, as can certain side dishes. Do bring a bottle of wine, a small dessert or menting in the kitchen can be fun, but as much prep work for the main course even some snacks guests can eat while such experimentation should be avoided the night before the meal as possible. waiting for the main course.

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November 2016  |  Holiday Gift Guide — 3


4 — Holiday Gift Guide  |  November 2016

Create a delicious dessert for holiday celebrations

T

his is a time when many families display t hei r best recipes , a nd t hese may i nclude certain desserts that can be labor-intensive to make or something more fitting for a special occasion. Cheesecake is an example of a dessert that, due to the time it takes to create and the richness of the dessert itself, is not something many people eat on a regular basis. However, with a time-saving recipe, cheesecake can become a dessert prepared in little time for holiday festivities. Try “Cinnamon Caramel Cheesecake Squares” from “Pampered Chef Season’s Best, Fast, Fun & Fabulous” by Pampered Chef® Test Kitchens.

$

Makes 24 squares 2 8-ounce packages seamless crescent dough 2 8-ounce packages cream cheese 1 egg 2 teaspoons vanilla extract 3⁄4 cup sugar, divided Flour for dusting 1 tablespoon cinnamon 1⁄2 cup caramel topping

the sugar to the bowl. Whisk until smooth. Spread over the crescent dough. 4. Lightly sprinkle the f lat side of a cutting board with flour. Unroll the second package of crescent dough and roll it into a 13- by 12-inch rectangle. 5. Fold the dough in half from the short end; gently lift and place in the pan. Unfold and gently stretch the dough over the cream cheese layer; press the edges to seal. Cut off corners of dough hanging over and discard. 6. Bake 22 to 24 minutes, until golden brown. 7. Combine the remaining 1⁄4 cup sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl. Place the caramel topping in a 1-cup measuring cup. 8. Remove the pan from the oven. Immediately pour the caramel topping over the cheesecake and spread to the edges of the crust. Sprinkle with the cinnamonsugar mixture; let stand for 10 minutes. 9. Using a utility knife, cut into 4 x 6 rows to make 24 squares.

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1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Unroll one package of crescent dough into a shallow baking pan. Roll out the dough to edges. 2 . He at t he c re a m c he e se i n a m icrowave-sa fe bowl , u ncovered , on high for 30 to 40 seconds, or until softened. Whisk until almost smooth. 3. Add the egg, vanilla and 1⁄2 cup of

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November 2016  |  Holiday Gift Guide — 5

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6 — Holiday Gift Guide  |  November 2016

F

or this year’s special holiday spread, impress guests with elevated dishes and cocktails worthy of the occasion. You can make the ordinary extra­ordinary by using a secret ingre­d ient to enhance familiar flavors and favorites. The secret is an essential ingredient typi­cally used for cocktails that can also boost any number of dishes on your holiday menu. Bitters are the quintessential ingredient in

Cranberry-Orange Pecan Bread 1 rounded cup fresh or frozen cranberries (about 4 1/2 ounces) 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour 1 cup sugar 1 teaspoon baking powder 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/4 teaspoon baking soda 3/4 cup toasted pecans, coarsely chopped 1 large egg 2/3 cup low-fat buttermilk 6 tablespoons butter, melted 2 tablespoons orange zest 1/3 cup orange juice 2 teaspoons Angostura Orange Bitters 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract Heat oven to 350 F. Lightly grease 9-by-5-inch loaf pan. If using frozen cranberries, spread berries out on cutting board and let rest for 10 minutes. Cut large cranberries in half. In large bowl, combine flour with sugar, baking powder, salt, baking soda, nuts and egg; blend thoroughly with whisk. Stir in cranberries. In small bowl, whisk together buttermilk, butter, orange zest, orange juice, bitters and vanilla extract. Add to dry ingredients and stir gently until fully moistened; do not over mix. Spoon batter into pan and smooth out top. Bake 50 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Let rest in pan 10 minutes then turn out onto wire rack to cool completely for at least 1 hour before slicing.

some of the world’s most famous and best-loved drinks, but their versatility stretches beyond the bar. Made with the same recipe since 1824, Angostura Bitters lends its unmistakable flavor and aroma to a surprising variety of beverages and dishes. Add sensational depth of flavor to holiday dishes such as Roast Turkey with Gravy or Mush­room Casserole. Or, for a sweet holiday treat, crunchy toasted pecans and Angostura Orange Bitters complement the tangy cran­b erries in this Cranberry-Orange Pecan Bread. Explore more delicious ways to elevate your holiday meals this year at Angostura.com. ➤ Island Eggnog recipe, see page 7

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November 2016  |  Holiday Gift Guide — 7

Island Eggnog 6 2 2 3 2 1 1

eggs, beaten teaspoons grated lime zest cans (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk cups canned evaporated milk cups Angostura 7 Year Rum ounce Angostura Aromatic Bitters pinch freshly grated nutmeg or cinnamon

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In large bowl, beat eggs and lime zest using electric mixer until light and fluffy. Gradually pour in condensed milk while continuing to mix then pour in evaporated milk. Stir in rum and bitters; sprinkle with nutmeg. Transfer to bottle and refrigerate at least 3 hours (preferably overnight). Serve in rocks glasses over crushed ice or in champagne flutes for entertaining. Garnish with freshly grated nutmeg or cinnamon.

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8 — Holiday Gift Guide  |  November 2016

Stand-Out Holiday Side Dishes Creamy Corn Chowder Prep time: 5 minutes Cook time: 20 minutes Servings: 6 4 slices bacon, diced 3 stalks celery, finely chopped 2 small potatoes, peeled and diced 1 medium onion, finely chopped 1 green bell pepper, finely chopped 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour 2 tablespoons paprika 1 can (14 1/2 ounces) chicken broth 1 teaspoon salt 1 1/2 cups DairyPure Half & Half or Heavy Whipping Cream 1 can (15 1/4 ounces) corn, drained

In 4-quart saucepan over medium heat, cook bacon until just crisp, stirring occasionally. With slotted spoon, remove to paper towels to drain. Reserve bacon. Leave 2 tablespoons bacon drippings in saucepan. Add celery, potatoes, onion and pepper, and cook until vegetables are just tender, about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in flour and paprika; cook 1 minute. Gradua lly stir in chicken brot h and salt until mixture is smooth and thickened. Stir in half & half (or heavy whipping cream) and corn; over high heat, heat to boiling. Reduce heat to low; simmer uncovered 5-10 minutes, until mixture is heated through. To serve, sprinkle each serving with reserved bacon.

D

uring the holidays, the main dish usually steals the spotlight. This year, turn the tables in your own kitchen and make the sides the stars of the show with just a couple everyday ingredients.

Creamy Garlic Mashed Potatoes Prep time: 10 minutes • Cook time: 30 minutes 3 pounds Yukon gold potatoes, peeled, cut into large chunks 1 1/2 cups DairyPure Heavy Whipping Cream or Half & Half 4 large garlic cloves 3 tablespoons butter 1 large leek, chopped 1 teaspoon salt 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper In 4-quart saucepan over high heat, heat salted water and potatoes to boiling. Reduce heat to low; simmer uncovered 20 minutes until potatoes are tender. Drain well. In small saucepan over high heat, heat heavy whipping cream and garlic cloves to boiling. Simmer uncovered 15 minutes, until garlic is just soft. In small skillet over medium heat, melt butter; add leek. Cook 5-8 minutes, until leek is tender, stirring occasionally. In large bowl, mash potatoes with garlic-cream mixture, leek, salt and pepper until well-blended and smooth.

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Holiday travel tips M

i l l ion s of people travel to visit family a nd friends each holiday season. According to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics, during the Christmas and New Year's holiday period, the number of trips to and from a destination 50 miles or more away rises by 23 percent compa re d to t he aver a ge number for the rest of the year.

While many people look forward to reunions with family and friends come the holiday season, long-distance holiday travel can take both a physical and financial toll. But there are ways to enjoy holiday travel and maybe even save some money at the same time. · Be f lexible with your travel dates. Holiday travelers who are f lexible with regard to their travel dates may be able to avoid traffic or long lines at the airport. The BTS notes that people traveling between 50 and 99 miles away from home are most likely to travel on Thursday and return on Saturday. So those making short trips who want to avoid traffic may actually benefit by driving home on Sunday after leaving home on Friday rather than traveling on Thursday and Saturday. The BTS notes that travel days are spread out almost equally among people who travel 100 miles away from home or more, so the day travelers choose may not matter as much as the time of day they choose to travel. Flights during off-peak hours, for example, may help travelers avoid long check-in and security lines at airports.

November 2016  |  Holiday Gift Guide — 9

Tis the season to ship smart T

· Be flexible with airports. Air travelers who are flexible with regard to their departing and arriving airports may be able to save time and money. Small airports might not boast the shopping and dining amenities of large airports, but small airports have less flights and, as a result, tend to experience less flight delays, saving travelers time. Small airports also may not charge as much for overnight parking as large airports. When considering flights from various airports, factor in the cost of parking and transportation to and from each airport. A flight that takes off at your ideal travel time but costs more than the alternative might actually save you money if you can save on transportation and parking. · Book early flights. Early flights may be less likely to be delayed than flights in the afternoon and evening. The later into the day your flight departs, the more likely that departure might be affected by delays or inclement weather at other airports and in other cities. Waking up early might not be ideal for everyone, but check-in and security lines tend to be short in the early morning hours as well. Those lines get longer as morning becomes afternoon and afternoon becomes evening. · Save money with package deals. Holiday travel is expensive, as airlines and hotels recognize the holiday season is peak travel season. Package deals from sites such as Orbitz® combine flight and hotels into one price, and such deals may even include rental cars. Travel bundles can save travelers considerable amounts of money. Compare the prices when booking each individually to the price of a package deal, and choose the one that best suits your budget. Savvy men and women can save both time and money by employing a handful of strategies when booking holiday travel.

he holiday season can be hectic, and thanks to that sometimes frenetic pace, it can be easy to put things on the back burner. While it's OK to put off some things until the holiday season has come and gone, shipping gifts to loved ones does not fall into that category. Shipping can be expensive, especially for last-minute shoppers who want to ensure their gifts arrive in time for the holidays. But the following are a handful of ways to ship smart and save both time and money. · Ship early. Waiting to ship all gifts at the same time may be more convenient, but it can prove more costly as well. If you typi-

cally finish your holiday shopping just a few days before Christmas, then waiting to ship everything will cost more money than shipping gifts as you buy them. The longer you wait to ship gifts, the more you can expect to pay if you expect those gifts to arrive on time. Shipping gifts as you buy them, especially if you get much of your shopping done early, can save you short-term or overnight shipping fees, which can be significant. · Comparison shop. Much like you can save money by comparison shopping for holiday gifts, you can save by comparing shipping costs as well. Pack-and-ship companies compete for consumers' business during the height of the holiday shipping season, so compare the costs between the various pack-and-ship companies, including the postal service, to see which offers the best deal. · Insure the items you ship. The holiday season is the busiest time of year for the pack-and-ship industry. While the industry is often remarkably effective at delivering gifts intact and on time, items are sometimes lost or damaged. By insuring your packages, you're ensuring you won't be out of luck should your package be lost, damaged or stolen before it reaches its destination.

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10 — Holiday Gift Guide  |  November 2016

How to manage holiday shopping trips with kids in tow

H

oliday shopping has changed considerably since the dawn of the Information Age.

Nov. 25th

{shops open until 8PM}

Drop by the NTH from 9 am-5 pm for Hot Apple Wassail Cider & Christmas goodies!

More traditional holiday shopping still affords shoppers the chance to find great deals, especially at the last minute. Parents may prefer to leave the kids at home when holiday shopping, but sometimes they don't have a choice. Fortunately, there are ways to manage holiday shopping trips with kids in tow.

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· Encourage kids to create shopping lists. Keeping kids engaged on holiday shopping trips can be difficult, especially when shopping at stores that tend to draw crowds and long lines. But parents can engage youngsters by encouraging them to create their own holiday shopping lists for family members and then helping them find those gifts wherever they plan to do their holiday shopping. Let kids bring their lists along and check off gifts as they purchase them.

2016 Main Street Holiday Ornament

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OTHER GIFT ITEMS AVAILABLE...

Petite Christmas-themed original oil paintings by in-house artist Maggie Bowers

· Let kids do their own shopping. In addition to creating lists, let kids do their own shopping, including paying for gifts they purchase for loved ones. Kids might be more interested when holiday shopping if they're allowed to peruse stores for potential gifts and then purchase gifts with their own money. · Break up shopping excursions with a meal. Kids enjoy dining out, even if their preferences lean more toward chicken fingers than steak au poivre. By breaking up shopping excursions with meals out on the town, parents can give kids something to look forward to at the onset of the shopping day. Such a break also gives everyone, moms and dads included, a chance to get off their feet and catch their breath. When the meal is over, promise kids a trip to get some ice cream or hot chocolate at the end of the day so they once again have something to look forward to.

The Newnan Times-Herald is celebrating downtown Main Street’s

NTH 150th Anniversary Special Edition

NTH 150th Keepsake Mug

to do anything but shop, kids are likely to grow impatient if the day does not include at least one fun distraction. Look for feature fun things for kids to do, such as carousel rides or visits with Santa Claus. While this might require parents to spend more time shopping than they initially hoped, it can help keep kids engaged while giving them something fun to do at the same time.

Parents who must take their kids along on · Schedule some fun time. While parents holiday shopping excursions can take steps pressed for time might not have much time to make such trips fun for all involved.

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Hanging stockings with care

M

a ntles ador ned w it h garland and other holiday trinkets make fireplaces come alive for Christmas. That magic is only enhanced by hanging Christmas stockings, which are just waiting to be filled with goodies for good girls and boys. Those without a fireplace often hang stockings from windowsills and stairway banisters. No written record exists to explain the origin of hanging stockings on fireplace mantles. Despite this, many people link the tradition to a tale about St. Nicholas. As that story goes, St. Nicholas was traveling through a village when he overheard the plight of three women. They were

poor, and their father could not afford an ample dowry to marry them off. Rather than have them end up spinsters, St. Nicholas secretly tossed bags of coins through a window (or down the chimney, depending on which version of the story you read or hear), and they were captured in the girls' stockings hanging to dry by the fire. The family was overjoyed to have received such riches. Soon news traveled about the mysterious money in stockings, and other children left out stockings for St. Nicholas to capture their own gifts. The tradition has transformed over the years, and

now ma ny children ha ng stockings by the chimney with the expectation that the stockings will be filled with gifts from Santa. Traditions once suggested that only gifts from Santa were left in stockings, while gifts placed beneath the tree were from family, but that has since changed. Stockings are now meant to hold small gifts while larger items are placed under the tree. Stockings should be hung away from the flames of the fire as a safety precaution. Some children even like to hang individual stockings on their bedposts instead of on a fireplace mantle.

November 2016  |  Holiday Gift Guide — 11

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12 — Holiday Gift Guide  |  November 2016

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Holiday Gift Guide 2016