Whether you’re roasting the perfect prime rib or a plump turkey, here are five spectacular sides to serve alongside
1 America’s Test Kitchen’s Ultimate Scalloped Potatoes
Most scalloped potato recipes take hours to make — and somehow, despite all that care and time, the finished dish is rarely very good. So ATK bestowed some TLC on this classic side, and the re-invented version is spectacular. For one thing, it takes 20 minutes to bake, not an oven-hogging 2 hours. That’s because you simmer the sliced potatoes (use a food processor, by the way, to get uniform slices) in a garlicky, herby cream mixture first. You’ll find the failproof recipe and tricks here.
2 Super Simple Horseradish Sauce
Horseradish is a classic pairing for prime rib. Its spicy, peppery flavor provides just the right counterpoint. Cook’s Country‘s “sharp yet supersimple” horseradish sauce uses sour cream (not mayo) and undrained prepared horseradish, the kind from the refrigerator case, which is not loaded with preservatives. The recipe couldn’t be easier: Combine ½ cup each sour cream and prepared horseradish, add 1½ teaspoons kosher salt and give the mixture a couple of turns with your pepper grinder. It couldn’t be easier. (Prefer cranberry sauce? They’ve got a super easy recipe for that, too.)
3 Arugula Salad with Persimmons and Spicy Pecans
That buffet of heavy, decadent holiday foods needs something bright and sprightly to spice things up, and this recipe from Parties That Cook founder — and Bay Area News Group columnist — Bibby Gignilliat is the perfect thing. Peppery arugula, fresh persimmon slices and pomegranate seeds are lightly dressed in an easy vinaigrette you can make days ahead. Crumbled goat cheese and easy spiced pecans dress things up. This festive salad recipe is a winner.
4 Broccolini with Pancetta and Parmesan
This easy Cook’s Country recipe sautees broccolini — it would work with broccoli, as well — with garlic, pancetta and red pepper flakes, then finishes things off with a dusting of parmesan. It’s easy, delicious and unlike so many decadent holiday sides, good for you, too. Yum.
5 Chanterelle and Green Bean Un-Casserole
We all remember the classic green bean casserole, with its “sauce” of canned cream of mushroom soup and garnish of also-canned fried onions. Fort Bragg chef Julia Kendrick Conway, from the Assaggiare Mendocino catering company, has re-invented the dish as an “un-casserole” of sauteed fresh green beans topped with chanterelles, shallots and heavy cream, and garnished with parsley-flecked breadcrumbs for crunch. It’s sensational. Here’s the recipe.