a few last minute holiday food ideas

So sorry it's been a little quiet over here. I'm sure you can relate to the chaos and close-to-overwhelm that comes with this time of year. I'm doing my best to navigate it with as little stress as possible. At this very moment I'm enjoying a conversation about literature with the fiance and his Mom over some mimosas. (I know doesn't sound very chaotic, but I promise this is a rare quiet moment and I'm enjoying it immensely.) The festivities will pick up again later today with a trip to the theater for the Nutcracker and continue until we get home on Christmas night. I will be enjoying the hospitality of many others over this holiday weekend, and helping where I can. Maybe someday I'll get the chance to host a big holiday, but today I'll gladly settle on sharing a few last ideas for holiday snacks and appetizers. These are things I've made recently and then later thought, "oh this came together really nicely, I should probably share this." (haha) Or it's something I found scrolling through my photo library.

On Wednesday I shared a few cocktail recipes over on Want2Dish. There's a Winter Citrus Spritzer, a Clear & Bright, and a Cranberry Maple Old Fashioned.

 holiday cocktails

I actually shared a photo of these on Facebook earlier today, but they're just so good I had to include them in this list as well. These were a Food Matters project recipe and turned out rather festively colored. Even if you don't think you like beets, I'd give these a chance.

beet chips

 This last idea is a whole meal idea and it includes a lot of those lovely little rubies we call pomegranate seeds. The pomegranate goes throughout the entire meal as a little pomegranate juice is used to flavor the scallops.

I was just very struck by this recipe in The Sprouted Kitchen cookbook for Seared Scallops on Black Quinoa with Pomegranate Seeds. We were having some friends over for dinner this past Wednesday and I couldn't get the idea of cooking this out of my head. I couldn't get my hands on black quinoa, but I can tell you black rice works just fine and is just as dramatic.

I wanted to include some veggies in this meal and as luck would have it, I struck Pinterest-gold and came across this recipe for Shredded Brussels Sprouts Salad with Fried Goat Cheese. This recipe also happened to require some pomegranate seeds. :-)

 shredded brussels sprouts and goat cheese

black rice and pomegranate seeds

seared scallops and pomegranate glaze

I feel very obligated to tell you that Rob thought these scallops were the best he'd ever had. What I learned from this recipe ... I'll never try to sear scallops in anything other than coconut oil.

This was a wonderful meal shared with friends and I hope you will have the opportunity to enjoy a meal with your own loved ones. For those in the world who were affected by the tragic events of the past week, my heart and prayers go out to you. For any in this world who find themselves without during this holiday season, please know there are those of us in this world who want to help. I wish you come across the generosity that I know exists in this world.

Peace, Love & Happy Holidays!

Be sure to let me know what you'll be cooking for your holiday meals if you're celebrating!