5 holiday recipes to get you in the spirit

'Tis the season to whip up some festive treats and beverages!

Try your hand at some of the holiday-themed recipes here and send us pics of your version at liz at eatlikeawriter.com.

Bobby Flay’s Blackberry-Basil Gin and Tonic | Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa

Recipe courtesy Bobby Flay Steak

Bobby Flay's Blackberry-Basil Gin and Tonic (photo credit Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa)


  • Three Muddled Blackberries

  • 1 tsp. Superfine Sugar

  • 2 tsp. Fresh Lime Juice

  • 1 Large Fresh Basil Leaf

  • 3 oz. Gin

  • 4 oz. Tonic Water

  • Ice

  • Garnish: Lime wedge and Blackberry


  1. Combine the blackberries, sugar, lime juice, and basil in a highball glass and muddle with a muddler until blackberries are coarsely mashed

  2. Add the gin and fill the glass to the top with the tonic

  3. Stir a few times to combine

  4. Garnish with the lime wedge and blackberry serve

A Costa Rican Grandmother’s Fruitcake | Visit Costa Rica

Recipe courtesy of Costa Rican Chef Doris Goldgewicht

A Costa Rican Grandmother's fruitcake (photo credit Costa Rica Tourism Institute)


  • 2 sticks of butter

  • 2 cups of sugar

  • 6 eggs

  • 3 cups of flour

  • 2 tsp. baking powder

  • 1/4 tsp. baking soda

  • 1/3 cup sour cream

  • 2 cups of chopped walnuts or pecans

  • 1 cup rum (extra to moisten the cake)


  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F and grease and flour a bundt baking pan

  2. Cream butter and sugar for 5 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time

  3. Sift flour, baking powder and baking soda and add sour cream to the mixture

  4. Transfer to baking mold and bake for approximately 1 hour

  5. Remove from the pan and cool on a cooling rack

  6. Dampen with rum and cover with a cheesecloth to preserve moisture

Ho-Ho-Hot Chocolate | Estancia La Jolla Hotel & Spa

Ho-Ho-Hot Chocolate (photo credit Estancia La Jolla Hotel & Spa)


  • 1 1/2 oz Mezcal

  • 1/2 Crème de Cacao

  • Mexican Hot Chocolate

  • Whipping Cream


  1. Build the cocktail in a mug by adding Crème de Cacao, Mezcal and Hot Cocoa then stir

  2. Top off with whipping cream and garnish with grated dark chocolate and a mini ornament

Fivetown Mulled Wine | The Meritage Resort & Spa and Vista Collina Resort

Recipe courtesy Executive Chef Vincent Lesage

Fivetown Mulled Wine (photo credit Meritage Resort & Spa)


  • 1 bottle of zinfandel

  • 1 bottle of cabernet sauvignon

  • 2 cup cinnamon syrup

  • 1 orange

  • 1 lime

  • 1 lemon

  • 1 star anise

  • 3 cloves


  1. Peel the zest of the orange, lemon and lime

  2. Toast the star anis and the clove in a small pan on the stove until very fragrant

  3. Put the bottle of cabernet and zinfandel to heat up but do not boil them

  4. Add all the ingredients listed and infuse covered for 25 minutes

Holiday Holly Mocktail (non-alcoholic)

Recipe courtesy bubly

Holiday Holly mocktail (photo credit: bubly)


4 oz. strawberrybubly

Half-moon orange slices

½ oz. Strawberry Puree

½ oz. Balsamic Vinegar

Strawberry slice, garnish

Orange Slice, Garnish


Serve all ingredients over ice in a highball glass.

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