Sponsored Post: While we were compensated for this event, all opinions are 100% our own.
We don’t know about you, but in our house this time of year is incredibly busy – with the holidays just around the corner and lots of family visiting each other, any way to make holiday food easier can make life a lot simpler. This is where Whole Foods comes in! Offering complete holiday meals to satisfy everyone including vegan and vegetarian options, no one will go home hungry from your holiday party with the fare Whole Foods has for you to share!
This years holiday menu offerings encompass 8 different meal packages from turkey, ham, vegan or lamb. Whole Foods also offers appetizers, soups, salads, seafood, sides and desserts. The folks at Whole Foods invited us and 4 other bloggers from the Omaha area, Lexi from Lexi Bites, Erin from Her Heartland Soul, Janelle from Bakes in Slippers and Trisha from Eat Your Beets to a to a “Friendsgiving,” where we had the chance to try a number of items just to let you know how good they were! We also were asked to make cocktails for this event, our Holiday Honey Punch and Rosemary’s Pear!
We started the evening with some appetizers, the Gruyere and Spinach Stuffed Mushrooms, crab cakes and pumpkin Almond Wontons. Our first course started out with the Gruyere and Spinach stuffed Mushrooms, which were earthy and salty with a delicious creamy texture from the Gruyere. We also tried the crab cakes, which were mixed with bell peppers, onions and herbs. The lemon aioli that accompanied this was AMAZING and we would have licked the bowl clean if that weren’t frowned on. The last appetizer we tried was the Pumpkin Almond Wontons. OMG. These were like dessert, but were appetizers, so if you want a dessert to begin and end your meal, this is it! The pumpkin and almond ricotta together made for a sweet treat!
We continued the meal with the soup and salad course. The soup was the Wild Mushroom and Chestnut Soup, which was a creamy combination of vegetable stock and tons of veggies! The roasted chestnuts gave a rich warm nuttiness to the soup that made this a fantastic dish and one we definitely are going to pick up for ourselves! The Harvest Salad which was a mix of fresh salad greens, cranberries, toasted walnuts with crumbled blue cheese topped with fantastic pomegranate molasses vinaigrette.
For the main course we were able to try the Turkey Dinner and the Vegan Holiday Dinner. The Turkey Dinner comes with a beautiful whole roasted turkey, mashed potatoes, herb stuffing, green beans, cranberry relish and gravy. The turkey was very nicely roasted to a beautiful golden brown. The turkey was perfectly moist, while the skin had a nice crispy roasted flavor.
The Vegan Dinner comes with Vegan Roast en Croute, which is made with cranberries, apples, hazelnuts and kale. Accompanying this is Vegan Mashed potatoes, herb stuffing, green beans, cranberry relish and vegan mushroom gravy. All of us were very surprised with how good the Vegan roast en Croute ended up, a very flavorful dish that reminded us of a vegan version of a Beef Wellington, the puff pasty shell nicely toasted to a golden toasty finish, while the stuffing was savory and nutty.
We finished the meal with plates of different desserts, and Whole Foods offers baked goods that have no hydrogenated oils, added trans fats, artificial colors, flavors or preservatives, and made with unbleached flour. The trays were very tempting, and despite being stuffed from the other meals, almost all of us gave into the temptation and enjoyed the delicious desserts!
While we were enjoying our desserts, we also had a chance to see some of what Whole Foods has to offer for presents, whether it is for a hostess or as Christmas Presents. Of real interest to us was a special bottle of bourbon bottled just for our Omaha Whole Foods from Eagle Rare, and a scratch and sniff whiskey book! If any of our readers needs a hint, these would be pretty great for us!
You can order your holiday meal for Thanksgiving through today the 23rd, or remember that they offer this for events during December as well, but you have to order by December 22 for Christmas! The 2015 Holiday Menu also features a full Hanukkah menu of traditional favorites such as Matzoh Ball Soup, Brisket with Mushrooms & Onions, and salmon.
Many thanks to Cassandra and Phyllis at Whole Foods for inviting and hosting us! You are both amazing!
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