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Holiday Tradition Highlights

The holidays are here! We asked our team to dish on their favorite seasonal pastimes. No matter how you celebrate, we wish you a happy, healthy, and food-filled New Year!

Joelle Battista 
Culinary Director

“It may sound cliché, but my favorite holiday tradition is the cookie baking marathon I have with my mom every year. A few days out, we look through all the cookie cookbooks and select about a dozen different cookies, including a combo of new ones we want to try and traditional favorites. Then, the day of, we work together in the kitchen from after breakfast until 1 or 2 in the morning. When we are done, we clean up the huge mess we made and eat a whole plate of cookies to celebrate our hard work!”

 
Oliver Meder  
Culinary Media Specialist

“It may not be the longest-standing holiday tradition, but ever since I went to culinary school, my mom and I have made chocolate truffles together. We love to give them to friends and family as little holiday gifts and see their faces light up. Plus, we always make a double batch so that we have enough to last us the season!”

 
Joanne Smart 
Culinary Writer

“Every year I’ve made homemade sticky buns for my family to enjoy in the morning while unwrapping presents. The recipe starts with making a homemade croissant dough that includes yeast, powdered milk, and about 2 pounds of butter. It requires a full day commitment as the dough must be rolled and folded every couple of hours to create its crisp, buttery layers. The holiday would not be the same without the scent of cinnamon and biting into a warm, gooey, and homemade sticky bun for breakfast.”


Sarah Breckenridge 
Culinary Writer 

“For the past several years, my family has hosted a New Year's open house that runs more or less all day long. So I have time to hang out with our guests, the food is festive but pretty hands-off. We include a croquembouche-style tower of donut holes (I pick them up from a local donut shop), a giant charcuterie board, and a hot chocolate bar with help-yourself toppings and liqueurs for spiking. Sadly, because of the pandemic, our party is on hiatus this year, but we're looking forward to it in 2022!"

 
Anna Behnke
Nutrition Specialist & Recipe Tester

"My favorite holiday tradition is the hours of time I spend baking with my mom and siblings, while my dad sits back and acts as the master taste tester. We bake dozens of sweet treats, including one special cookie: the Norwegian Krumkake. My great grandparents moved from Norway to Brooklyn back when my grandma was just a thought. With them, they brought a special waffle maker machine to make their favorite cookies, Krumkake. Krumkake is similar to the Italian Pizzelle but rolled to resemble an ice cream cone, and, according to my family recipe, flavored with cardamom. They’re perfect on their own or with a little whipped cream, but they are especially good enjoyed near a fire watching a holiday movie with family.”

 
Michael Tropeano 
Recipe Developer

"Every year during the wintertime, my family celebrates with my favorite tradition, which is making holiday cookies and enjoying them by a fire. We always spend the whole morning decorating the house, then by the afternoon, transition to making cookies and other sweet treats. It is a day I look forward to every year, and I can’t wait for it to take place this upcoming season."