Food blogger and recipe creator Nick Evans of Macheesmo just for Woodwork Wine has shared holiday tips and recipes with our site!
If you haven’t seen Nick’s blog, you might recognize him from NBC’s Food Fighters where he competed against some of the nation’s best chefs (and did really well!). You may also know Nick from his recently published cook book Love Your Leftovers.
1. Do you have any thoughtful or creative ideas for holiday decor?
I’m a bit of a minimalist when it comes to holiday decor. I like to spend my money on food and drink! But, that said, I will usually make sure to have some fresh, seasonal flowers out. This time of year, I always like to grab a few poinsettia plants. They add great color to a room and are a no-brainer for quick holiday decor!
2. What should we bring as a hostess gift when invited to somebody’s home?
Don’t bring a dish unless you were asked to bring one or it is a potluck. If the person has planned a whole meal, then throwing another dish into the mix might make things confusing. You can’t go wrong with a nice bottle of wine. This year, I always have a few extra bottles of Woodwork Zinfandel to bring to holiday parties!
3. Can you provide a delicious appetizer recipe or any meal planning suggestions?
My new favorite holiday appetizer barely needs a recipe. Lay out a few cups of seedless grapes on a baking sheet and sprinkle them with some olive oil, salt, and sugar. Roast them at 400 degrees until they are bursting, about 20 minutes. Scoop those into a serving bowl and let them cool off a bit. Serve the roasted grapes with goat cheese over crackers.
4. Do you have any fun traditions that will inspire us?
For me, the holiday season is not only about tastes, but about smells. In my house, we always start a simmer pot early in the morning. I’ll toss in some cinnamon sticks, lavender, allspice berries, and whatever else smells good and let it gently simmer for a few hours. It makes the whole house smell amazing and it’s something we look forward to every year.
5. Are there any additional tips or ideas that you would like to leave with us?
Don’t spend all your time in the kitchen! I love to cook and love to put out an impressive meal, but during the holidays you also get a chance to see people you may not see again for a year. Spend time with them as a first priority, even if it means taking some shortcuts on meals!
Woodwork Wine Holiday Recipes