Traditional apple cider gets a kick of warm winter flavor with some Winter Spice Seasoning. Transform this warming beverage into a cocktail by adding 1 cup (240 ml) of dark rum, bourbon whiskey, or favorite flavored vodka.
Ingredients + Procedure for Winter Spice Seasoning* *Make in advance and keep on reserve this versatile spice blend to have you feeling the warmth of the holidays in every dish.
3 cinnamon sticks
2 Tablespoons crystallized ginger
¾ teaspoon ground cardamom
3 Tablespoons salt
1 Tablespoon pink peppercorns
1½ teaspoon whole cloves
½ cup (50 g) dried orange peel
½ cup (110 g) brown sugar, packed
Place all ingredients into the Vitamix container in the order listed and secure lid.
Select Variable 1.
Start the machine, slowly increase to its highest speed.
Blend for 30 seconds or until desired consistency is reached, using the tamper to push ingredients into the blades, if needed.
Mixed peppercorns can be substituted if unable to find pink peppercorns.
Ingredients for Cider:
2 (400 g) seasonal apples (red varietals work the best) quartered, seeds removed
4 cups (960 ml) apple cider
½ cup (75 g) dried dates, pitted
– 1 Tablespoon Winter Spice Seasoning*
– Place all ingredients into the Vitamix container in the order listed and secure the lid.
– Select Variable 1, start the machine, slowly increase to its highest speed, and blend for 5 minutes 45 seconds; or select the Hot Soup program and allow the machine to complete its programmed cycle.
I love roasted wild mushrooms; it’s a great side dish for any roasted or game you may do during the Holiday season. You can pick your own selection of mushrooms; my selection is based on different colors and mushroom flavors — and are very easy to find. The cauliflower is great little touch to bring some crunch, and make it look like grated cheese. – Chef Herve Malivert, Director of Culinary and Pastry Arts
Check out the following recipe crafted by Chef Herve Malivert to add this fun funghi side dish to your holiday menu!
Yield 8 to 10 portions
For roasted mushrooms:
3 lb Oyster Mushrooms
3 lb Hen of the hood mushrooms
3 lb Chanterelle
3 lb shitake mushrooms
3 lb Cremini mushrooms
Salt & Pepper (to taste)
10 garlic cloves (sliced)
For the garnish
¼ of a head of cauliflower
For the mushrooms:
– Clean all mushrooms and cut them into large similar sized pieces.
– In a hotel pan or a baking dish layout with thyme and garlic scatter all the mushrooms in 1 layer sprinkle salt, black pepper, and oil
– Bake in a convection oven set at 375 degrees until roasted, and slightly golden and crisp.
For the garnish and plating:
– Remove the thyme and garlic from the warm mushrooms + place in a serving tray or individual side dishes container.
– Using a Microplane, grate some cauliflower on top.
The holidays aren’t complete without these ginger-spiced favorites! Here’s a tip: Make two batches and keep one of yourself!
1 cup (120 g) whole wheat flour
1 cup (115 g) all-purpose flour
1 Tablespoon ground ginger
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon Winter Spice Seasoning
¼ cup (60 ml) molasses
1 cup (200 g) sugar
¾ cup (165 g) butter, melted
1. Heat the oven to 350°F.
2. In a bowl, combine flours, ginger, baking soda, and Winter Spice Seasoning. Set aside.
3. Place egg, molasses, sugar, and butter into the Vitamix container in the order listed and secure the lid.
4. Select Variable 1, start the machine, slowly increase to its highest speed, and blend for 15 seconds.
5. Add the liquid mixture from the Vitamix container to the bowl with the dry ingredients and stir to incorporate.
Chill the dough for 30 minutes.
6. Using a spoon, scoop dough and roll into 1-inch balls between your hands.
Place balls 2 inches apart on an ungreased baking sheet.
7. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes until the tops are rounded and slightly cracked.