Celebrate the Holiday Season with this Festive Menu!

Panko-Crusted Mahi with Pomegranate Orange Salsa
Preparation time: 30 minutes
Cooking time: 20-25 minutes
Serves: 6

½ c. pomegranate seeds
1 navel orange, peeled and diced
1 tbsp. orange zest
1 Hass avocado, peeled, pitted, diced
1 tbsp. olive oil
1 tbsp. honey
1 tbsp. lemon juice
¼ c. fresh mint
½ c. fresh basil
Pinch kosher salt
Pepper to taste
1 c. egg whites (approx. 6 eggs)
6 4-oz. mahi filets
2 c. Panko breadcrumbs
¼ c. peanut or canola oil

For the salsa, combine first 4 ingredients in a large bowl. Then add olive oil, honey and lemon, and gently toss. Fold in mint and basil, season with pinch of salt and fresh pepper. Set aside. In another large bowl, gently whisk egg whites. Dip mahi filets into egg whites then breadcrumbs. Heat oil in large, deep skillet over medium-high heat. Fry mahi until golden and cooked through (about 5 minutes per side). Season with pinch of salt and serve with salsa.

Spinach Gratin
Preparation time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 50 minutes
Serves: 6-8

4 eggs, lightly beaten
½ tsp. salt
½ tsp. pepper
1 10-oz. pkg. frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
10 oz. ricotta cheese
6 oz. crumbled goat cheese
¾ c. shredded parmesan cheese
¼ c. flour
¼ tsp. nutmeg
3 tbsp. fresh dill
1 leek
1 tbsp. butter

In a large bowl, whisk together eggs, spinach, ricotta, and goat cheese. Season with salt and pepper. Fold in parmesan, flour, nutmeg, and dill. In a small skillet melt butter over medium heat. Sauté leek until softened, about 6 minutes. Fold into spinach mixture. Pour mixture into buttered 8 x 8-inch baking pan and bake in preheated 350-degree oven for 45 minutes. Cool slightly, cut into squares and serve.

Preparation time: 5 minutes
Serves: 4-6

9 oz. orange or citron vodka
3 oz. fresh clementine juice
3 oz. pomegranate juice
3 oz. champagne
Pomegranate seeds for garnish

Pour vodka and juices over crushed ice in a martini shaker and shake well. Pour into martini glasses and top with champagne. Garnish with pomegranate seeds.

Flourless Chocolate Cake with Candied Cranberries
Preparation time: 30 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes
Serves: 6-8

4 oz. bittersweet chocolate (not unsweetened), chopped
1 stick unsalted butter
¾ c. sugar
3 large eggs
½ c. unsweetened cocoa powder
1 12-oz. bag frozen or fresh cranberries
1 c. sugar
2 tbsp. orange zest
3 tbsp. orange liqueur, such as Grand Marnier

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line bottom of 8-inch round baking pan with wax paper and butter the wax paper. Melt chocolate and butter in metal bowl set over a saucepan of barely simmering water, stirring until smooth. Once melted, whisk in sugar then eggs. Stir in cocoa powder, mixing well. Pour batter into pan and bake in middle of oven 25 minutes. Cool and invert onto a serving plate. Spray rimmed baking sheet with nonstick spray. Toss cranberries with orange zest and sugar in medium bowl to blend. Spread onto baking sheet. Bake 10 minutes. Stir berries gently. Bake until berries are thawed, about 5 minutes longer. Cool and toss with orange liqueur. Spoon berries onto cake.

By Carrie Hanna, Southern Boating December 2014