The holidays are stressful enough without having to worry over the preparation of an elaborate meal. And yet, holiday dinners are such good times to connect over food—and such a great opportunity to show off your cooking chops—that the temptation to go big with your dishes is nearly unavoidable. The solution? These two recipes that bring inventive ingredients to your table with a minimum of anxiety. Sure, seafood may seem a daunting choice, but these rich, delicious dishes are as easy to prepare as they are impressive to guests.
Lobster for the holidays? Yes, please. Josh Cohen, our test kitchen chef, put together this recipe that marries our favorite flashy crustacean with pasta in a simple-to-prepare but visually stunning dish. The twist? A puree of caramelized veggies that serves as a flavorful sauce to complete a picture-perfect meal. All it takes to make the whole shebang is some chopping, sautéing, and blending.
The words au jus usually conjure up red meat served heartily. This Genius (and ingenious) recipe from culinary superstar and Top Chef judge Tom Colicchio gives scallops the same treatment, adding welcome emphasis to a meat whose flavor is naturally sweet and light, but sometimes overwhelmed by its surroundings. It’s also devilishly easy (just a sauté and a sear) and quick: While scallops feel like a complicated restaurant specialty, you can actually sear them in under five minutes! The holiday dish you’ll wind up with will be a gift to the mouth and the eye.
What’s your favorite quick-and-easy holiday dinner recipe? Share below!