As many of us welcome friends and family into our homes the kitchen becomes the hospitality center. If you plan to entertain during this holiday season, we have gathered up some of our favorite foods alongside some new ideas for this winter’s celebrations. We hope you will share your family’s holiday fare with us in the comments on our Facebook page. We love to try new things, and a recommendation that comes from a friend is always the best to have.

Harmon door

A warm welcome to the Harmon home, any time! Happiest of holidays!

At Melani and Paul’s house they are always trying new things: this chicken drumstick recipe with a tarragon mustard sauce looks like a simple and elegant meal fit for a celebration, so it has been added to the “next up” list. This warm French lentil recipe I just tried for the first time at a friend’s holiday party would be a great accompaniment, and I can’t wait to make it myself. One additional plus for this one is that it would also make a hearty vegetarian dish if dietary needs around the holiday table are diverse. As an added plus, one of the Harmons’ favorite white wines–the Viognier from the Big Cork, the “neighborhood vineyard” in Rohrersville–would be great served alongside both of these dishes.

Gina and Jason passed along a fantastic crowd pleaser that is perfect for when you have a house full of guests and need a one pot meal option that is easy and delicious. You can tell it is very well-loved and long used, especially since multiple cooks are vying for credit with Colleen’s or Chris’s Calico Beans!

Ingredients: 2 15 oz cans pork n’ beans, 2 15 oz cans great northern beans, 2 15 oz cans kidney beans, 2 lbs ground beef, 1 c ketchup, 2 T cider vinegar, 1 c brown sugar 1/2 c dehydrated onions, 1/2 c. bacon bits


Brown beef w/ onions. Add ketchup, vinegar & brown sugar. Add beans (undrained) and bacon bits. Stir well and simmer for a few hours. It is actually ready to eat as soon as it is heated through. I let it simmer all day. It is better the second day. The beef onions and bacon bits can be added in any proportion that you wish. What is on the front of the card is what I use (give or take).

If cocktails by the fireplace is more your kind of holiday get-together, Paul has his eye on these holiday cocktails to try. This has four variants of a Moscow Mule to serve guests in festive new copper mugs if you’ve got them, but any ol’ glass will do! Choose from blackberry, cranberry, apple cider, or holiday spice. If the kids need something special, my own go to is Mexican hot chocolate, which is versatile enough to kick up a notch with bourbon or rum for the grownups, too. If you aren’t familiar with it the Abuelita brand is available in a lot of grocery stores, and the standout is that it has cinnamon in it, which hits a festive note without being too exotic for the kids’ tastes.

If you have not had a chance to see it, we just unrolled our new website over the past couple of weeks. We are excited to make information more available to our clients and display our range of expertise. If you would like a quick guided tour, last week’s blog post highlights a few of the new features.

We wish you a safe and happy holiday season, with all the comforts of hearth and home. Sending much love and cheer from the whole Harmon Builders team. ~Paul, Jason, and Melani