The halls are decked, the tree is trimmed, but the hardest part of hosting remains: You're going to have to cook something!
Set your holiday party apart from the rest by taking a recipe or two from some of the leading ladies of the Bay Area's culinary scene. Here, some of our top women chefs share their holiday favorites with a global spin—think Mexican-inspired stews and Scandinavian sweets.
Melissa Reitz, Locanda
(Courtesy of Amy Seward)
"Eating with friends and family is such a treat around the holidays. I like to spend that time getting messy cracking crab and dipping it into homemade mayonnaise or melted butter flavored with dried chiles." --Melissa Reitz, chef at Locanda.
Melissa's method for a big crab feed:
"I boil live Dungeness crabs in water seasoned like the sea, with a little extra salt, then clean them of their guts and gills, cut them through their body at each leg, and pile them high on a platter. Everyone at the table has a nutcracker, a plate, several napkins and a glass of wine. Some people like to crack and pick all of their crab before eating it. Impatiently, I just eat as I go."
Get in on the action at Reitz's Christmas Eve event, The Feast of the Seven Fishes, an Italian holiday tradition spotlighting four courses of fresh seafood, served family-style.