Braised Lamb Shanks with Winter Fruits

Both cozy winter comfort food and festive celebratory feast, these simple braised lamb shanks make for a sumptuous holiday meal.

Last year I threw my back out on Christmas Eve eve. I’ll spare you the woeful details of how I was couch-ridden during the busiest time of year, and instead fast-forward to the highlight reel: Danny’s braised lamb shanks.

We had invited guests for dinner on the 25th and I couldn’t stand up, let alone cook. Danny wrapped on an apron, opened Nigella’s At My Table, and filled a Le Creuset braiser with lamb, dates and pomegranate molasses.

The resulting dish swept everyone off their feet, back pain or not, and filled the house with an intoxicating aroma. One of my kids mashed potatoes to accompany the lamb, my sister brought a salad, and we feasted together.

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Molasses Rye Spice Snaps

A simple, stir-together cookie that yields delicious results in under 30 minutes.

I hosted my first cookie swap in 2006 and decided it was my favourite holiday party. It was a low-key, easy-to-plan gathering for this busy young mother.

I loved how the swap brought my friends together over coffee or punch, and had a practical side, too: a wide assortment of gorgeous, homemade Christmas cookies.

Today I’m sharing an updated version of a cookie that was ever present at those swaps: the beloved Gingersnap. With crispy edges, a chewy center and a deep, dark flavour, these Molasses Rye Spice Snaps are everyone’s favourite holiday treat.

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Fall 2021 Cookbook Recommendations

The Simple Bites kitchen presents a list of cookbook recommendations for both cooking and baking at home.

It’s currently snowing – our first dusting! I’ve parked myself on the sofa under a heated blanket and surrounded myself with cookbooks. Is this my happy place, here by the twinkling Christmas tree? Most definitely.

I know you’ve been waiting for this post. My fall 2021 cookbook recommendations are based on hours of reading and days of cooking and baking (also my happy place).

These are the books that helped me get back into a preserving groove and opened up a whole new world of cookie baking. These books influenced my dinner plans, transformed my leftovers and gave me permission to do the bare minimum sometimes.

This post goes hand in hand with my 2021 Spring Cookbook Round-Up. Review both lists of cookbook recommendations before making your list for Santa!

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How to make pretty garnishes for holiday desserts

A collection of simple tutorials to help you make edible garnishes for holiday desserts.

A swirl of cream, a spray of sugared rosemary, a scattering of pomegranate seeds – these flourishes capture the eye and stir the appetite.

Pretty garnishes for holiday desserts are more than just the finishing touch. They show that love and care has gone into a baking creation, and they entice us to reach for them on the sweet table.

Today’s post is all about how to make edible garnishes for holiday desserts that are festive and fun. Nothing is overly complicated, in fact, I’ve even included a list of ‘instant’ garnishes you probably have in your kitchen right now.

It’s a busy post, so let’s jump right in to my tips for creating a showstopper dessert!

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What to Cook and Bake in November

Frost on the windshield of the car or not, I’m still popping into my local farmer’s market early every Saturday morning and loading up on gorgeous seasonal produce.

I can see my breath in the crisp air as I move from stall to stall. From just-picked pears to newly pulled carrots, the harvest from this year continues to inspire.

From breakfast to dinner, here’s what to cook and bake in November. You’ll definitely want to chop up a pumpkin for comforting soup, roast beets for a vibrant dip, and peel carrots for a classic beef stew.

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