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International Holiday Feast

Gloria's Melt-in-your-mouth Butternut Squash



1 butternut squash

1/2 cup mayonnaise

1/2 cup finely chopped onion

1 egg, lightly beaten

1 tsp brown sugar (or honey)

salt & pepper

1/4 cup crushed crackers

2 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese

1 tbsp butter, melted


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

To cook the squash (the ways we did it):

a) Peel & cube squash, then cook in pan with oil and bit of water, covered on medium-high heat. Flip occasionally.

b) Cut whole squash in half length-wise and roast in oven with butter/oil and salt until soft.

In a large bowl, mash the softened squash with mayo, onion, egg, sugar, salt and pepper. Spoon into a baking dish.


In a small bowl, mix crackers, cheese and butter. Sprinkle on top of squash. Bake uncovered for 35-45 minutes, until topping is light brown. 

Melissa's Nana Cheese Cookies


1 cup butter

1 - 8oz package imperial cheese (or more!)

dash of salt

1/8 to 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper or tabasco

1/4 tsp worcestershire sauce

1 1/2 cups flour

4 cups puffed rice


Soften butter and cheese and cream together.

Add salt, cayenne and worcestershire. 

Stir in flour and puffed rice. Mix well.

Shape into balls and press down with a fork which has been dipped in cold water. You can also form dough into logs, chill and cut into slices.

Bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes, or until lightly browned. Snap, crackle, mom!

Note: this recipe does not double well.

Crystal's Creamy Corn Casserole



1/2 cup melted butter

2 eggs, beaten

1 (8.5 oz) package dry corn bread mix

1 can whole kernel corn, rinsed & drained

1 can creamed corn

1 cup sour cream


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Lightly grease a 9x9 inch baking dish.

In a medium bowl, combine butter, eggs, corn bread mix, whole and creamed corn and sour cream.

Spoon mixture into dish.

Bake for 45 minutes, until the top is golden brown.

Nancy's Hot & Sour Soup



1 tbsp canola oil (or substitute with grapeseed)

4 oz cremini or shiitake mushrooms, thinly sliced

1-3 jalapeno peppers, finely diced

6 garlic cloves, minced

3 inch piece of ginger, grated

1-3 limes, zested and juiced

8 cups soup stock

1/2 cup jasmine rice

2 tbsp soy sauce or tamari

1/2 small head green cabbage, halved and shaved thin


Heat oil in a large pot or Dutch oven on med-high heat.

Add mushrooms and cook for 5 minutes without stirring.

Stir and cook for another 5 minutes, or until browned. 

Add peppers, garlic and ginger and cook for 5 minutes, or until fragrant and slightly softened.


Add lime zest and soup stock, and bring to a simmer.

Add rice, cover pot and simmer for about 20 minutes, until rice is just barely soft.

Add cabbage, lime juice, soy sauce, and simmer for a few minutes. Taste and adjust seasoning.


Serve with: chili garlic sauce or kimchi, lime wedges and extra soy sauce.

Jesse & Brett's Pomegranate Barley Salad

from Plenty by Yotam Ottolenghi


1 large pomegranate

1 cup pearl barley

6 celery sticks

big handful of dill and parsley

3 tbsp sherry vinegar

2 small garlic cloves

2/3 tsp ground allspice

olive oil

salt and pepper


Soak pearl barley overnight. Drain and rinse, and bring to a boil with just over 2 cups of water. Cover and simmer until tender, about 40 minutes. Let it cool. In the meantime, prepare the rest of your ingredients:

Remove pomegranate seeds, cut celery into small dice, chop up dill and parsley, and crush garlic cloves. To make the dressing, combine crushed garlic, vinegar, allspice, oil, salt and pepper. Once the barley reaches the temperature you prefer, toss into salad.


Holiday Salad Collaboration


1-2 carrots

1/2 apple

3 beets

1/2 butternut squash

greens (kale, lettuce, salad mix)

goat feta

handful of chopped hazelnuts

pomegranate seeds


For this recipe, we grated the carrots and apple, and roasted the squash and beets. Feel free to play around with and reverse cooking methods (for example, grating the beets and roasting the carrots), and add other warm vegetables like sunchokes or brussel sprouts. Or tofu!


As for salad dressing, we like simple balsamic and olive oil, but if you want to dress it up for the holidays, add some mustard, honey, garlic powder, or nutritional yeast -- whatever you like! You could also mix the goat cheese with the roasted veg as soon as it comes out of the oven to give your salad that extra gooey factor.

Joey's Parsnip Puree


4 large parsnips

1-2 sweet potatoes


2-3 tbsp butter

1/4 cup whipping cream

salt & pepper, oil




Peel and chop parsnips and sweet potato.

Mix with thyme, garlic, oil, salt and pepper in large bowl, then wrap mixture tightly in aluminum foil.

Roast in oven for 20 minutes, or until tender.

Unwrap foil packet and empty into small pot on low heat. Mash and mix in butter, cream and other seasonings as you like. Use chopped chive and parsley as garnish.


For a vegan recipe, use olive oil instead of butter, and vegetable stock or coconut milk instead of cream.

Nicola's Irish Cream & Chocolate Cheesecake


100g butter

250g digestive biscuits, crushed

450g cream cheese

25ml Baileys or other Irish cream liqueur

100ml icing sugar

300ml double cream, whipped *

80g grated dark or milk chocolate


* In Ireland, Double Cream contains up to 48% butterfat and it is difficult to find outside of Ireland and the UK.

In Canada whipping cream is the closest equivalent and has 32-35% butterfat but we would suggest trying to get the highest fat content possible (come on, it's the holidays!)


Melt the butter in a pan and add the crushed digestive biscuits. Mix well until the biscuits have absorbed all the butter.

Remove from the heat and press into the bottom of a lined 18cm/7in springform tin. Place in the refrigerator and allow to set for one hour.


Meanwhile, prepare the filling. Lightly whip the cream cheese then beat in the Irish cream and icing sugar.

Fold in the whipped cream and two thirds of the grated chocolate. When smooth, spoon evenly onto the biscuits.


Refrigerate and allow to set for a further two hours.

Once set, remove and decorate with remaining grated chocolate or cocoa powder dusted over the top. Serve.

Isis's Australian Pavlova


6 egg whites
1 1/2 cups caster (superfine) sugar
2 tsp white or apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp corn flour 
300 ml whipping cream
2 kiwis, peeled, thinly sliced
1 just-ripe mango, cheeks removed, peeled, thinly sliced
2 passion fruits


Preheat oven to 120°C. Line an oven tray with baking paper.

Use an electric mixer to whisk the eggwhites in a clean, dry bowl until soft peaks form.

Gradually add sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating well after each addition, until meringue is thick and glossy and sugar is dissolved. Rub a little meringue between your fingers, if it’s still gritty, continue to whisk until sugar dissolves. Add the vinegar and cornflour and fold until just combined.


Spoon the meringue onto the lined tray and use a spatula to shape into a 20cm disc.

Bake in oven for 1 1/2 hours or until pavlova is dry to the touch.

Turn off oven and leave, with the door ajar, to cool completely. Transfer to a serving plate.

Use an electric mixer to whisk the cream in a medium bowl until soft peaks form.

Spoon onto the top of the pavlova. Decorate the top of the pavlova with kiwifruit, mango and passionfruit pulp. Serve immediately.


Notes: fruit can be replaced with what ever is in season and available to you. In northern parts of Australia it is common to have mango, banana and passionfruit. In southern areas expect to see mixed berries. You could even try poached quinces or apricots! Just remember not to put the cream or fruit on until just before you serve this as the fruit juices can 'split' the cream.

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