Holiday Home Preparedness
These are the times when neighbors, friends and relatives stop in to spread a little holiday cheer. The holiday season brings us together, and people of all faiths can unite over food which is a universal gesture of nourishment and love.
Safeway Executive Chef Jeff Anderson has some fabulous tips for families to make this, sometimes, hectic time of year just a little easier. The tips not only help you to stay organized, but also help to save money as fewer trips to the store means less spending.
After I share some tips, I’ll show you some food items that I make sure to keep at home during the holidays, so that I’m prepared for any last-minute guests stopping in to spread some cheer!
Tip #1: Stock up on baking essentials and keep a well-stocked pantry: Lucerne® is a quality dairy brand carried exclusively at your local Safeway store in the Washington D.C. area, available at reasonable prices. For holiday baking, keep the following items on hand all month long:
- Lucerne® Heavy Whipping Cream
- Lucerne® Half and Half
- Lucerne® Milk
- Lucerne® 18 count eggs
- Lucerne® Butter
Tip #2: Take inventory of what you have: There is no sense in spending money on things you already have. Before the holidays, check your pantry, fridge and freezer to find out what you have and don’t have. Make a list!
Tip #3: Use Safeway’s Grocery Delivery service: Did you know Safeway can deliver your last-minute needs on the same day? With a one-, two- or 4-hour window, you can get everything you need to deliver right to your home. Access this service by downloading the Safeway Delivery App, available for iOS™ and Android® devices, or online at shop.Safeway.com.
Tip #4: Get organized: Before you bake or cook your scrumptious holiday treats, get everything you need organized. Make sure you have all your utensils, baking materials and ingredients out so you aren’t wasting time in the kitchen looking for them.
Tip #5: Measure dry ingredients: A good way to save time in the kitchen is to measure out your dry ingredients before getting your hands dirty. Ingredients such as flour, salt, Lucerne® dairy products, and spices can all be pre-measured before you begin. If you have little helpers in the kitchen like I do, this turns into a fabulous lesson in math!
Tip #6: Preheat that oven: Before you even begin to mix those ingredients, preheat your oven. The more time your oven has to heat up, the more accurately you will be able to bake your treats and the less time will be spent waiting around.
Tips #7: Get on top of it: Let’s face it, when guests pop in to spread a little holiday cheer, you may not have time to make a whole feast. Keeping a few dishes prepared just in case is easy to do with Lucerne® dairy products.
Prepare for a cheese-and-crackers tray. Lucerne® cheese comes in slices and makes preparing a cheese-and-cracker tray easy to throw together when guests arrive. It’ll take just minutes and is a welcoming treat!
Hot chocolate is a tasty treat that can be thrown together on a whim and customized for the holidays. With some hot chocolate, Lucerne® Eggnog, Lucerne® Heavy Whipping Cream and a dash of pumpkin pie spice, you’ll have a unique, tasty treat that fills the home with memorable aromas and warms cold hands!
Sweet home-style cornbread – I especially love cornbread around the holidays, because it’s a nice treat with hot chocolate or a cup of tea or coffee. It lasts and can be enjoyed at room temperature.
Recipe for my Sweet Home-style Cornbread
- 3/4th cup cornmeal (medium grind)
- 3/4th cups ground cornmeal
- 1 – 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 2 tsp baking soda
- 2 Lucerne® eggs
- 1/2 cup buttermilk (if you use powdered buttermilk follow mixing directions)
- 2/3rds cup sugar
- 1 -1/2 cup Lucerne® Heavy Whipping Cream
- 4 tbsp. melted Lucerne® butter
- 1/2 can of sweet corn (drained)
Directions: Mix all ingredients in a bowl starting with creaming your sugar, eggs and cream first, then slowly add the remainder of your ingredients.
Bake 350 degrees approximately 20-25 minutes (until knife inserted in middle comes out clean).
Cheese and Crackers
- Lucerne® pre-sliced cheese tray
- Wheat crackers
- Deli Salami
Directions: Quarter salami and display Lucerne® cheese, crackers and salami in rows as seen above.
Hot Chocolate with Eggnog
Directions: Prepare any hot chocolate (Keurig or powdered is fine). Add 1/4 cup Lucerne® Eggnog. Top with Lucerne® fresh whipped cream. Sprinkle with pumpkin pie spice.
I big thanks to my Lucerne for supplying the delicious items for my recipes. I’ve been a Lucerne shopper for longer than I can remember – the thoughts, recipes and opinions in this article are 100% mine.