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Posts tagged as “holiday cocktail”

Happy 4th of July: Festive recipes to celebrate Independence Day

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This is not a sponsored post or endorsement made in coordination with or paid by any of the brands or individuals mentioned here—only offering a few suggestions based on things my family and I have tried and enjoyed.

July 4th in the United States celebrates Independence Day. On that date in 1776, the 13 original colonies claimed their independence from England, forming a new nation.

If your family is like mine, years past may have been celebrated with large BBQs complete with burgers and hot dogs, pasta and potato salads, corn on the cob, and assorted sodas and beers (for those of age to drink, of course.) When I was growing up, my grandparents had an above ground pool at their home, and at my house we had a community in-ground pool. I spent a lot of time at both of them so depending on where our summer feast took place and if it wasn't raining, taking a dip in the pool was absolutely in order while dinner was being made.

For dessert, we typically took a trip to get soft-serve ice cream or ate an American flag cake—which many of you probably know and have likely made or tasted at least once, if not many times: a rectangle-shaped poundcake or a boxed vanilla cake mix covered with whipped cream, strawberries and blueberries arranged in the shape of a flag. Finally, a trip to see fireworks at a local park capped off the night, where we would sit on a blanket or folding chairs, or stand near the car, to watch the magical bursts of colors in the night sky.

This year will no doubt be very different. Maybe a large gathering you may have planned with your family and friends was downsized or turned into a virtual celebration with some of them instead. I have also seen some creative ways that communities are celebrating in the absence of being able to have large, in-person gatherings: drive-through fireworks, for example, are being planned at the Iron Pigs Minor League baseball team ballpark for the holiday weekend in the Lehigh Valley, PA.

No matter how you are celebrating this year, here are some festive food ideas that you can still hopefully try.

Cherry Sangria Fizz

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If you're like me then you've probably taken a trip to the grocery store at least once, maybe twice by now to prepare for the "big day" coming up. Maybe it was to get your turkey, or stock up on staples like paper towels or other pantry items that always seem to take up a lot of room in a shopping trip. I generally like to get these things out of the way in the weeks leading up to Thanksgiving or any big holiday so I can focus on the details of the meal itself, like buying fresh ingredients, as the days count down.

My Thanksgiving brainstorming admittedly started months ago when I started browsing for new recipes that could be candidates to have on my table this year. A few select recipes even got trial runs and taste tests to make sure that they were up to par to put on the final holiday menu, with Dave as my Chief Taste Tester and my parents as members of the testing panel (or peanut gallery, depending on the day.)

I don't usually go too crazy with new recipes, since most in my family like to eat tried-and-true favorites or subtle variations on them on Thanksgiving, but I do try to sneak in one or two "new" things where I can. For me, this usually comes in a variety of booze. Nobody in my family is a die-hard wine drinker or is otherwise bound to a specific spirit or libation, so trying new cocktail recipes is one way I like to be creative with adding something for holiday meals.

If you're looking for ideas for a quick holiday drink to make for Thanksgiving, consider this when you take your next trip to the store this week (or maybe it's your 100th trip to the store because if you're anything like me then list or no list, something, somehow, is always missed in the other 99 trips): a festive berry-colored drink that starts off with Sangria wine and adds a few other simple ingredients. Lime-flavored seltzer tops the drink off with a little fizz and helps to lighten it up some, too.