Better Homes & Gardens December 2012 Recipes

Butter Bean Ragout
Set your holiday table with the newest recipes from Better Homes and Gardens, including beautiful woodland-inspired Christmas cookies, fresh takes on soup and salad, and one showstopping Christmas dinner menu. Plus, deck your halls with our easy decorative gingerbread.

3-D Gingerbread Trees

'Tis the season to stop and smell the gingerbread. Adorn your holiday table with our easy-to-assemble gingerbread trees. Decorate them as you please using our quick icing recipe and pastel candies.

Melon and Herb Bread Salad

For this fresh and healthy crowd-pleaser, Prize Tested Recipe winner Kelly Ortigara started by making fattoush, a traditional Lebanese bread salad, and added watermelon and pomegranate seeds for a delicious twist.

Rosemary-Scented Evergreen Cookies

Wow your holiday crowd with the unexpected deliciouness of rosemary-lemon shortbread cookies from award-winning cookbook author Nancy Baggett. To make four large cookies, trace around a tree-shape cookie cutter and use a copy machine to increase the size to 11 inches tall. Use dough scraps to form the star. This recipe also makes 44 regular-size cookies.

Holiday Rib Roast with Grain Mustard Sauce

Looking for a showstopping holiday dinner idea? We've got you covered. Our rib roast recipe from chef Melissa Perello gets its crispy crust from the garlic-herb rub and its zippy flavor from a savory grain mustard sauce.

This holiday roast is ready for your special feast! We'll walk you through every step -- from searing the rib roast to simmering the sauce to monitoring the meat temperature.

See How to Make Holiday Rib Roast with Grain Mustard Sauce

We walk you through every step to make this special roast for your holiday feast!

Fruit and Cheese Cocktail Cookies

Add some color to the buffet table at your holiday party with these cheese-flavored cookies paired with a tangy cranberry-and-fig filling. Prepare and freeze ahead of time, and simply assemble and store in an airtight container up to two days before your event.

Orange-Ginger Pomegranate Punch

Pop the bubbly and use it in our festive holiday punch recipe featuring Prosecco, orange liqueur, pomegranate juice, and sliced fresh ginger. Garnish with rosemary sprigs and orange slices for one bright and fun party drink.

Spicy Gingerbread Twigs

With a satisfying crunch and all the flavor of classic gingerbread, these irresistible treats get a dose of holiday fun from coarse sugar "glitter" and are easily bundled for a cute food gift. Use a ruler and pizza cutter to slice your gingerbread dough into strips.

Make crunchy gingersnap cookies featuring coarse sugar "glitter." Watch as we share the secret spicy ingredient that takes these beyond standard Christmas cookies!

See How to Make Spicy Gingerbread Twigs

Watch how simple it is to make this delicious gingerbread treat!

Chocolate-Dipped Trail Bites

Fresh and dried cranberries add a tart bite to these easy (and freezer-friendly!) holiday shortbread cookies. A candied orange slice and a dash of sea salt take the chocolate-dipped delicacies over the top. To make candied orange slices, brush orange or clementine slices with melted orange marmalade and place on parchment to cool.

Lime and Ginger Chewies

Ground and fresh ginger pair with lime zest to give these crisp-chewy sugar cookies a refreshing punch of flavor. A dusting of powdered sugar and a sprinkling of lime peel add a touch of elegance. Freeze them for up to 1-1/2 months.

Banana-Nut Pound Cake

Move over, banana bread. There's a new tasty way to use up your bananas. Nuts add an unexpected crunch, while bourbon gives Brenda Camp Orbell's Prize Tested Recipe winning cake its signature moistness. Serve it straight out of the oven, or freeze it for the next time you have company.

Pistachio-Fruit Biscotti

Packed with dried apricots, golden raisins, and toasted pistachos, this easy biscotti recipe is so much better than fruitcake. Plus, it's delicious dipped in chocolate or swirled in coffee. Even better, it lasts up to 10 days and freezes for up to two months.

Beef and Black Bean Chili

Fit a hearty meal into your busy schedule with our simple slow cooker beef chili. It's budget-friendly, perfect for a crowd, and gets its sweet smokiness from cumin, chili powder, and unsweetened cocoa. For an extra kick of heat, toss in one minced chipotle chile in adobo suace.

Toasty Coconut Wedges

These golden buttery shortbread wedges make a quick and easy holiday dessert. Coarse green sugar adds an elegant edge to the coconut-topped treats. If you don't have a fluted tart pan or springform pan, just press the dough into a 10-inch circle and create a decorative design by pressing the edges with a fork.

Fruit & Date Lumberjack Cake

A menu favorite at her San Francisco restaurant, Frances, this delicious brown-sugar lumberjack cake from chef Melissa Orello is packed with dates, pear, and coconut. "It's always sweet, always moist, always good. There's something about it that takes you back to your childhood," Orello says.

Browned Butter Pecan Sandies

These cute-as-a-button shortbread cookies pack a double dose of pecan goodness -- once from the chopped pecans browned in butter for the dough, and again with a perfect pecan-half topper.

Chicken Pot Pie Soup

Serve up a warming bowl of Beth Seuferer's Prize Tested Recipe winning chicken pot pie soup, complete with homemade quick biscuits, and you've got the perfect dinner idea for a cozy night in.

Brown Butter and Sausage Quick Bread

Instead of stuffing, chef Melissa Orello likes to serve this sweet and savory quick bread that features raisins, pecorino cheese, and Italian sausage. For the best browned butter, slice your butter so it melts evenly, stir it constantly, and remove it from the heat immediately after it froths a bit.

Sugar-and-Spice Bark Cookies

Fresh nutmeg and vanilla make these woodland-inspired treats a cozy addition to any cookie platter. To make the barklike texture, just score the dough gently with a dinner fork and slice it into rectangular cookies using a pizza cutter.

Butter Bean Ragout

This hearty holiday side dish features Parmesan cheese, lemon peel, and homemade seasoned bread crumbs in a creamy bean ragout. If you don't have dried butter beans, marrow beans and gigandes beans are both good substitutes.

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