There is no doubt that food has and always will be the foundation of what brings people together. This is especially true during the holiday season, whether it be gathered around the table for a meal, a festive family event or even a virtual call while enjoying a warm and comforting recipe.

The holidays are the perfect opportunity to impress, celebrate and indulge in something wonderfully delicious. To offer a bit of inspiration, we’ve put together ways you can elevate your meals and table settings with our favorite foodie recipes. All of them use our signature rice varieties to help you serve unforgettable meals and create unforgettable moments with the people that matter the most.

Using premium ingredients, go above and beyond this year with our five tips for your meals!

1. Use a Gourmet Blend of Grains

Mixing wholesome grains together is always a great culinary delight, whether it be for the aesthetic appeal of using a mixture of color, shape and texture or simply elevating the flavor in each bite.
Unique in quality and agricultural innovation, our Royal Blend® is the perfect option for adding an elevated touch to both sides and mains. Texmati® Rice is paired perfectly with complementing grains to ensure that every creation lives up to your culinary standards.

Foodie Recipe Ideas:

2. Set Your Table in Style

From family traditions to entertaining new guests, the holidays are a time to get excited about what ends up on the dinner table. If you’re going to serve up an unforgettable meal, you’ll need to start with your table setting. Use a few ideas to add a finishing touch to your table.

  1. Add a table runner: If you choose to add a table cloth or not, add another layer of color to your table with a runner cloth made with a contrasting tone or design.

  2. Place chargers or placemats under plates: Reusable chargers or placemats under each plate are perfect for adding color and dimension to the table.

  3. Add elegance with cloth napkins: Set your event apart from the ordinary using cloth or linen instead of simple paper towels and napkins. Ideally, your linen will match the color scheme of your table, however white will always do the trick with an inexpensive colored ribbon holding it together or a napkin ring. Additionally, they produce less waste.

  4. Light candles: Add height and atmosphere to your table with candles! Use tall or different height candles to add a unique texture. We suggest using unscented to avoid clashing with your delicious prepared food.

5. Make place cards: make your guests feel extra special by using place cards. If you’re hosting a family event, get any younger family members involved by having them write out names in black or colors. For a more elevated touch, write on thicker stock cards with metallic or black pen in cursive.

6. Plate your food on creative dishware: Use something vintage, holiday designed or shaped in fun ways. Jamie Vogt (@life.and.liz) plated her Chicken and Bacon Risotto Recipe in a pumpkin-shaped serving dish.

3. Garnish Your Dishes

Bring everything together with a finished and decorative look by adding garnish to your serving platters or plates.

Use ingredients from the dish itself like in this Risotto Recipe by Adrianna Salyards (@moderndaygf). Made with Arborio Rice, this dish is topped with green charred Brussels sprouts and red pomegranate seeds for an added bite that offers a unique balance of flavor and appetizing color in every bite.

The garnish can also provide a bit of added protein like in this East Asian-inspired recipe of Congee with Jasmati® Rice created by Christopher Joe (@cj.eats). He uses a mix of chopped scallions, duck eggs and fresh ginger to finish this comforting porridge made with a base of aromatic Jasmati® Rice, a hybrid of Thai jasmine rice and basmati white rice exclusive to RiceSelect.

Give your classic risotto recipe a twist by topping with fluffy eggs and savory bacon just like Kat Chen (@intentionally_Kat) in her recipe for Bacon and Egg Risotto. Use her suggestions, or jazz yours up however you choose.

Add something extra to your Rosemary Pumpkin Arborio Risotto by Kristianne Hannemann (@thecookingrx) by topping with extra cheese and cubed pumpkin bits. In place of cheese, nutritional yeast can also be substituted like in this Pumpkin Risotto created by Stephanie Niemis (@healthyholme).

4. Make a Luscious and Comforting Rice Soup

The holidays are a time to celebrate past traditions or begin new ones! Cozy up on cold winter days or share a recipe virtually with loved ones overseas. Use this family soup recipe from Petia Mitchell (@petiamphotos) who shares a bowl of delicious Arborio Rice Cannellini Bean Soup with her loved ones she can’t be with in person. The creamy texture of arborio rice adds a filling touch to a vegetable soup. Alternatively, you can experiment with this dish by preparing it as one of your orzo recipes instead or learn how to make couscous by incorporating into this recipe.

Or, if you prefer to eat something with more seasonal vegetables, try this Mixed Rice Soup recipe with Royal Blend by Ambujom Saraswathy. It’s chock full of vegetables like mushrooms, carrot, celery, sweet potato, onion and more with a Royal Blend of Texmati® White, Brown, Wild, and Red rice.

5. Finish With a Decadent Rice Pudding Dessert

Finally, give your guests a final farewell with a decadent dessert recipe like an Arborio Rice Pudding by Ambujom Saraswathy. This creamy egg-free rice pudding is made with rich Arborio Rice, milk and perfumed with cardamom all topped with toasted cashews and pistachios.

It’s never too early or late to start your own RiceSelect rituals or continue creating unforgettable memories with past traditions. This year, no matter what you serve, make sure to begin with RiceSelect and add your own extra pinch of creativity to really set your meals apart.

Visit our website for even more cooking tips and delicious recipes like this salmon risotto recipe.