Glazed ham, check. Yule log, check. Fruit cake, check. Sushi? Why not! This holiday season, make new memories and traditions by serving your fam + friends something a little unexpected for dinner with non-traditional holiday recipes meant to rouse a crowd. Dust off that Peking duck recipe clipping that’s been sitting in your scrapbook since 2001, put some elbow grease into making dough for a festive ‘za your pals can personalize or put a rustic spin on fondue that will leave your guests feeling extra special (and cheesy). If you do, you’ll find yourself wondering, “What new dish should I try next year?” Read on for nine out-of-the-box recipe ideas that will make a fabulous (+ delicious) holiday experience.
1. Peking Duck Breast With Clementine and Spices: Put a Chinese twist on your holiday goose with a Peking duck recipe, which, cool fact, was a dish cooked for emperors of China. You’ll see why as you + the rest of your table wrap crispy, rare slices of duck in flour pancakes slathered with hoisin sauce: The taste + smells are downright regal. (via Cuisine Addict)
2. Mustard-Braised Bacon Buns With Radish Pickles: Chinese buns, also called “bao,” follow the same rules as tacos: They’re just another starchy vessel for tasty fillings, which is why these buns are a must for parties. Fillings like this mustard-braised bacon can be made ahead of time and reheated the day of your celebration. Set out condiments like chopped cilantro, pickles and hot sauce for guests to add in at their leisure. (via The Pig and Quill)
3. Falafels With Tahini Sauce: If you’ve ever had the chance to order falafel from one of the fine establishments that lets you go wild at the toppings bar, you know that the accoutrements are the best part about falafel. Take that into account at your next (and possibly first) falafel party. Fry or bake falafel at the start of the evening to ensure the patties are hot and crisp, warm up that pita and make sure your table is adorned with toppings like fried cauliflower, marinated beets, pickled turnips and tahini sauce. Hey, you might not even need the falafel. (via The P.K.P. Way)
4. Raclette: Raclette is a specialty cow’s-milk cheese, traditionally served in individual little grills so everybody gets their own serving of delicious, melty cheese. Like a more rustic fondue, it’s a foolproof way to get everyone around the table at your holiday party. Raclette can run a little pricey, but you can substitute with other cheeses that melt well, like gruyere, fontina or taleggio and serve alongside small boiled potatoes, charcuterie and other vegetables. (via Happiness Is)
5. Curried Garbanzo Bean Tacos: If you’ve ever met a person who doesn’t like tacos, don’t invite them to your taco holiday party. Only kidding — that person doesn’t exist. The key to nailing a taco party during Christmas is to get adventurous with your fillings. Try slow-roasted carnitas or this curried garbanzo bean recipe, and don’t forget to heat up both corn and flour tortillas so guests can choose. (via Dreamy Leaf)
6. No-Knead Pan Pizza: This pan pizza will have you nostalgic for the pizza parties of school days past — except it’s *way* better. Whip up this easy, no-knead dough at least eight hours in advance and have the gang come over to Top. It. Up. Then, turn on your broiler and get out the cast iron pan. The pizzas you make with this recipe take approximately two minutes to cook — that’s as close to instant gratification as you can get. (via Host the Toast)
7. Temaki: Making your own sushi can seem intimidating for the uninitiated. Show everyone how simple and rewarding making sushi can be with this hand roll recipe that requires zero turns rolling a bamboo mat. Stuff this nori with smoked or raw sushi-grade salmon, avocados, sautéed mushrooms and cucumber or tempura fried sweet potatoes if you’re feeling fancy. (via Feasting at Home)
8. Sichuan Ma-La Hot Pot: Good food brings people together. Eating good food family style brings people together a little more forcefully. That’s where hot pots come into play. Bring out a bowl of boiling broth and have each guest choose and cook ingredients by giving ’em a dunk in the brothy bath. The more adventurous you + your crew get, the better: As more and more guests cook in the hot pot, your broth becomes richer and more flavorful. (via Lady and Pups)
9. Smoked Gouda Fondue: It’s quite possible that literally everything tastes better dipped in gooey, melted cheese. It hasn’t been scientifically proven yet, but it’s something you really should test out with your friends and loved ones. Try grapes, apples, toasted bread, cooked sausage and quickly steamed broccoli for dipping. Opt for both a savory fondue (cheese) as well as sweet (chocolate) so you have both dinner and dessert covered. Cleanup will be a breeze. (via My Name Is Yeh)
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