Culinary Inspiration

If you’re hosting a holiday party or dinner this year, you might feel overwhelmed with everything involved in orchestrating the perfect event. Fortunately, with these tips and tricks, the most you’ll have to worry about is the guest list! California walnuts help make the menu and decor a cinch, so you don’t have to fret over the details of your fête.

Master Your Menu

For an appetizer that will start your feast on the right note, look no further than these tasty Walnut and Brie Puff Pastry Bites. Made with frozen phyllo dough and topped with brie cheese, dried cranberries, and California walnuts, this appetizer comes together in no time at all. Even though this hors d’oeuvre is easy to make, it has a major wow factor on the plate, making it a sure-fire way to impress your guests. Round out your appetizer spread with these Crostini with Walnut Parmesan Cream. The walnut parmesan cream comes together easily in the blender and offers a smoothness to compliment the tangy tomatoes and rich pesto atop baguette slices. Careful not to fill up on these delicious dishes before the main meal! (They’re that good.)

When it comes to side dishes for big meal, stick to the classics: salad, potatoes, and veggies! But classic doesn’t have to mean ordinary. For flavor-packed greens, toss together a Walnut Balsamic Spinach Salad. Between the juicy pears, salty prosciutto, and crunchy candied walnuts, this salad covers all bases. When it comes to your starches, take a walk on the sweet side with these Walnut and Cranberry Stuffed Sweet Potatoes. This unexpected take on potatoes will be a show stopper on your table and set your meal apart from the rest this season. Finally, keep the vegetable medley simple, but gourmet with these Roasted Vegetables with Walnuts and Fresh Herbs.

If you’re in search of a traditional holiday main dish, serve a Caramel Walnut Glazed Spiral Ham. Brushed with a caramel walnut glaze, the end result is decadent comfort food–perfect for the occasion. Plus, this recipe isn’t very hands-on, so you’ll have plenty of time to drink and be merry. Don’t forget the vegetarians in attendance! Serve up these Butternut Squash Ravioli for a seasonal meat-free option at the table.

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