How to throw a festive feast!

Thanksgiving is almost here! And with it my desire to throw a feast of epic proportions. Whether it is the day of turkey you are prepping for, or any holiday meal, it is the little touches that can make it really great. I am teaming up with COFFEE-MATE today to share a few favorite ways I like to make my feasts festive, fun, and downright special.

The most important element to making any gathering special is to realize you don’t need a specific reason to bring on the fun! I love pulling out confetti, balloons and anything special I can find from around the house to make our table ready for a feast. And when possible (and sanitary) bringing the decor onto the food is always a hit – tie a couple tassels to your holiday bird for a seriously show stopping plate.

Thanks a bunch Thanksgiving party favors.

Thanks a bunch floral party favors

No matter the occasion, I love to send our guests home with something special. These small bunches of flowers are a simple way to say thanks for celebrating with us. Placed in paper cups around the table – the flowers make a nice centerpiece and can be taken home and enjoyed along with leftovers from the feast.

Butter rum cake gravy

Butter toffee mashed potatoes

Gussying up our holiday food is another fun way to take our feasts up a notch. I’ve been trying out the COFFEE-MATE® creamer seasonal flavors in some of our recipes and the taste has nicely surprised me. A little sweet, and a lot of fun to add to our meal. Surprise yourself with a yummy new take on holiday staples. Plus enter for a chance to win $25,00 towards a Martha Stewart kitchen makeover this season. No purchase necessary. Sweepstakes ends 12/31. Click here to enter and for official rules.

Mashed potatoes served in individual ramekins are perfect, they make for a nice touch to the table and it relieve guests from having to haul theirs out with a gigantic spoon. For this mashed potato recipe I replaced 1/2 of the cream with COFFEE-MATE® Butter Toffee flavored creamer. It adds a sweet and rich taste to the mashed potatoes.

Spiced rum Thanksgiving gravy

To compliment the mashed potatoes, we of course need gravy. I have a favorite gravy recipe that has been passed down in our family, which I think came out even better using a bit of black coffee and a dash of COFFEE-MATE spiced rum cake flavored creamer.

To make this coffee rum cake gravy (doesn’t that just sound amazing!?!) you will need; 4 tablespoons olive oil, 1½ cups chopped yellow onion, ¼ cup all-purpose flour, 1 teaspoon kosher salt, ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, 2 cups turkey or chicken stock – heated, 1 tablespoon fresh black coffee, 1 tablespoon COFFEE-MATE® Spiced Rum Cake flavored creamer.

Cook the onions in the olive oil until they are browned and soft. Add the flour and stir well. Add all the other ingredients except the creamer and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly for 4-5 minutes or until thickened. Add the creamer and serve while hot.

The result is a smokey and sweet gravy that has quickly become a new favorite side to bring to the table.

Text printed marshmallows

Print text onto marshmallows using food safe pens!

To finish off our feast in festive style I usually plan to move into the living room to enjoy an after dinner coffee service. Adding a few favorite COFFEE-MATE flavors like Pumpkin Spice and Spiced Rum Cake adds a special touch to our normal black coffee. To gussy our coffee up for special holiday occasions I made typography marshmallows!

The marshmallows are a great way to add whimsy and spunk to the coffee service. All you need to make them is a bag of marshmallows and a pack of food writers (pens that have edible ink inside!). The pens are sold in the baking section at craft stores to write on cakes – they work just perfectly for making a set of holiday marshmallows that everyone will love.

Text printed marshmallows made using a food safe pen.

No matter what you are feasting to this season, take the extra few minutes to make it special. The holidays only come around once a year!

I have teamed up with my friends at COFFEE-MATE to share about their seasonal creamer selection, which I love this time of year. All opinions and projects are my own. Thanks so much for supporting our site sponsors.