Thursday, December 24, 2015

Six Holiday Hacks For A Stress-Free Meal (And A Special At The Delta Ottawa City Centre)

Are you ready? The holidays are here, and ready or not, it's time to celebrate all things festive! Whether you're hosting at home for Christmas, Boxing Day, or New Year's Eve (or really, any day in between, because every day this season is worth celebrating!) make it a stress-free holiday season with these easy holiday hacks.

Here are six holiday hacks for a stress-free meal:

Prepare, prepare, prepare

Plan out what needs to be done and see what you can prepare a few days in advance of your get together so that all you need to do is cook and serve on the big day. Try to do the following the day's leading up to your party: mix all the dry ingredients, set the table, prepare your chutneys and sauces, and organize your fridge because there is nothing worse to do while cooking than scrambling to find things in a messy fridge.

Does that turkey come deboned?

Debone your turkey before cooking or ask your local butcher to help you out. This turkey hack will ut your cooking time in half and give you more space to cook other things.

Your oven isn't the only appliance in town 

There is nothing more frustrating than having to juggle all your recipes on a four-burner stove and since we've been experiencing warmer than normal temperatures this year, why not use your BBQ for a dish or two? Maybe even give your slow cooker a try for a great stuffing or vegetable side.

Comfort is key

Sometimes thinking out of the box invites unwarranted stress and possible panic if all doesn't go well. Stay within your comfort zone and make a tried and true recipe.

It doesn't always need to be festive

Your guests are likely attending more than one holiday dinner this season so they'll have their fair share of the traditional turkey and stuffing. Don't be affirm to service some ribs or whip up your famous mac and cheese!

Hot plates

When you make a big spread, it's hard to keep the food hot. Use the oven or microwave to heat up your service dishes before you put the food out. Heating the dishes up will help them hold their temperature for much longer.

Here's a great recipe to try this holiday season from Executive Chef of the Delta Ottawa City Centre, Jason Duffy: Cranberry and Red Pepper Ketchup (which is perfect to enjoy with turkey or ham):

Cranberry and Red Pepper Ketchup

15g chopped onion
3g chopped garlic
250g IQF cranberries
250g small diced red pepper
50ml cider vinegar
40ml maple syrup
1 ml allspice
1ml 5 spice
100ml cranberry juice
15g honey
Salt and pepper

Mix together and serve!

And here's a treat for you, if you're staying in town—why not make it a "staycation" and spend the night at the Delta Ottawa City Centre? The Delta Ottawa City Centre is also a perfect destination for your out-of-town guests. 

Right now, if you stay at the Delta Ottawa City Centre, you'll receive two passes to the Monet: A Bridge to Modernity special exhibit at the National Gallery of Canada, and you'll even get to experience their beautiful 10m Balsam Fir Christmas Tree. The stay also includes breakfast for two at LIFT Restaurant, parking, and kids under 12 eat for free! (Maximum of two children per reservation.)

You can even enjoy a delicious Christmas Day brunch and dinner at LIFT Restaurant:

Christmas Brunch: 11:00 a.m.—2:30 p.m.
Christmas Dinner: 5:00 p.m.—9:00 p.m.

Guests enjoying Christmas Brunch or Dinner can take advantage of Delta Ottawa City Centre's special "Take the Elevator Home" package for $99 per night. The stay includes breakfast the following morning at LIFT Restaurant.

No matter what you do this holiday season, make it stress-free by planning ahead, and maybe even treat yourself and your family to a getaway at the Delta Ottawa City Centre.

Happy Holidays!

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