Broker Blog: Holiday Recipes

Whether you’re entertaining your entire extended family or keeping it small this year, preparing for the holidays requires a lot of energy. In between buying gifts and setting up the village you see pictured below– I host events for both my family and my friends. I understand how planning out appetizers, meals, and desserts can take up a lot of time. That’s why I’ve organized a few of my favorite recipes that are easy to make so you can focus on what’s important– spending time with your loved ones.



This appetizer is a guaranteed crowd-pleaser. It takes about 15-20 minutes to make and pairs well with a champagne punch.


  • 1 Package of imitation crab flakes (chopped)
  • 2 8oz packages of cream cheese 
  • Pinch of minced fresh onion for taste (optional)
  • Cocktail sauce of your choice


  1. Mix the crab flakes, cream cheese, and onion together in a bowl.
  2. Take your mixture out and form it into two balls on a serving plate.
  3. Poke holes in the balls, smother in cocktail sauce and serve with crackers.


This drink always gets the party started. It’s light, fruity, and looks so festive when served in a glass.


  • 1 ⅓ cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1 cup superfine sugar
  • ½ cup orange liqueur (Grand Marnier)
  • ½ cup triple sec
  • ½ cup cognac
  • ½ cup fresh orange juice
  • 2 bottles of chilled dry champagne or sparkling wine
  • 1 cup fresh strawberries
  • 1 orange
  • 1 lemon 


  1. Combine lemon juice, sugar, and orange juice in a punch bowl or pitcher of your choice
  2. Add triple sec, cognac, and orange liqueur
  3. Stir in sugar until it’s completely dissolved
  4. Add champagne (or wine) and stir
  5. Cover and refrigerate until the mixture is chilled (at least 1 hour)
  6. Cut strawberries, orange, and lemon into slices 
  7. To serve, pour into individual cups and add fruit slices


For your sweet tooth this holiday season, this cookie is the perfect combination of peanut butter and chocolate. 


  • 1 ¾ cup flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons of milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ½ cup shortening
  • ½ cup peanut butter


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees
  2. Mix the shortening and peanut butter together in a bowl
  3. Add the wet ingredients (milk, vanilla, and egg)
  4. Add the dry ingredients (flour, baking soda, salt, sugar, and brown sugar)
  5. Roll the dough into balls using either your hands or an ice cream scoop
  6. Dip the balls into sugar
  7. Place the balls on a cookie sheet and bake for 8 minutes
  8. Remove the sheet from the oven, place chocolate kisses on each cookie, and return for 2-3 minutes


Side dishes are an integral part of every holiday meal. This corn casserole has always been popular among my friends and I’m sure yours will love it too!


  • 1 can of cream style corn
  • 1 can whole kernel corn with liquid 
  • 1 package of jiffy corn muffin mix
  • 1 stick of butter
  • 3 large eggs (or 2 extra-large eggs)
  • 1 small french onion
  • Pinch of white pepper


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease a 9×13 inch pan
  2. Melt butter in a bowl and chop the onion
  3. Mix the can of cream style corn, the can of kernel corn with liquid, the whole package of jiffy corn muffin mix, melted butter, eggs, chopped onion, and white pepper together
  4. Pour the mixture into the 9×13 pan
  5. Bake for 30-45 minutes or until the mixture becomes solid

Vegetarian/Vegan-Friendly Bruschetta

When you invite large groups of people over to celebrate the holidays, it can be difficult to accommodate everyone’s dietary needs. This bruschetta is an easy appetizer that everyone can enjoy!


  • 1½ cups tomatoes, chopped, and seeds removed
  • Large handful of basil, chopped
  • ¼ cup red onion, diced
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tsp vinegar
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 loaf of bread (baguette or ciabatta are best)
  • ½ clove of garlic


  1. In a bowl, add the tomatoes, basil, red onion, 2 tablespoons of olive oil, vinegar, salt, and pepper, and toss well.
  2. Brush the sliced bread with the rest of the olive oil on both sides and add to a hot skillet or oven grill. Grill on each side for around 2-3 minutes if using a hot skillet or 5-7 in the oven.
  3. Rub the garlic on the bread before topping generously with tomato mix.
  4. Serve right away.


Blog By: Melody Rosin  847-650-9395   [email protected]

Raised in Chicago’s South Side, then later raising her own family in Chicago’s North Suburbs, Melody Rosin spent nearly three decades working for United Airlines. Recognizing a need for change, Melody transitioned to real estate. With over 15 years under her belt, you can count on Melody as a seasoned and insightful agent. Among the benefits of the career switch was the ability to face new challenges in the city she has known her entire life. She gets to work with a plethora of individuals all seeking their dream home, especially in and around Evanston.



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