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December 2010 Issue
by Ronda L. Halpin
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    "A New Year's resolution is something that goes in one Year and out the other."

    - Anonymous

Welcome to the December issue of Seasoned Cooking. As we begin our journey to the New Year, this month gives us a great opportunity to enjoy the company of friends and loved ones. Often, these gatherings center around the kitchen. We are here to help make sure your kitchen is a warm and inviting space this holiday season, filled with the aromas of traditional foods and new favorites. We begin with a look at a couple columns that revisit a traditional holiday beverage as a key ingredient in creative dishes: eggnog. The Rise 'n Shine column brings us moist, delicious eggnog muffins, a perfect addition to any holiday brunch buffet. Forgo the stress of an evening dinner party and consider a casual, relaxed brunch gathering instead this year. The Happy Endings column takes a different approach with a decadent eggnog crème brulee. Make individual desserts or pour the custard filling into a graham cracker crust and let your guests enjoy a eggnog custard pie.

If you are wanting to entertain in the evening, but a full dinner sounds overwhelming, consider looking at the Kitchen Focus column, which shares a selection of holiday cocktails and appetizers for a simple, yet festive holiday cocktail party. There's also a great feature article that presents some great make ahead appetizers that could easily be added to the menu for any holiday gathering.

If making ahead appeals to your gift-giving plans, consider a visit to our other holiday feature, which focuses on great gifts that can be assembled using jars that might very well be sitting in your cupboard right now. Whether you are simply filling them with candies or sweets, or making a layered gift for baking your favorite cookies, homemade gifts are sure to bring smiles to the faces of your loved ones.

There is a lot more to be discovered in this issue, from easy and healthy busy week dinner recipes to elegant holiday centerpieces featuring ham or seafood. Enjoy it and share it with your friends. And don't forget to tell us about what you like and don't like by using our feedback forms in every article. Enjoy the opportunities to spend time with friends and loved ones that the holidays bring and here's to a seasoned lifestyle.

    Ronda L. Halpin

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