party food

In my opinion, lobster is synonymous with summer. To me, it symbolizes celebration and festivity in its most gratifyingly indulgent form. Whipped up into a luscious lobster roll on a fluffy brioche bun, or simply dipped in drawn butter, lobster is delicious in any form. There are endless ways to use lobster meat, including lobster risotto! Lobster risotto is a dish which optimizes beloved lobster meat into a feast for many to enjoy.

For lobster risotto, I keep things simple with basic aromatics, topped with a touch of parsley and parmesan cheese. It is light enough to accentuate the delicate lobster flavor without overwhelming its distinct taste. Best of all, lobster risotto really extends the meat from a few lobsters into something that a large group can relish.


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 2 cups arborio rice 
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 4 cups vegetable or seafood stock
  • 1 ¼ cups parsley, chopped and divided
  • 13-14 ounces lobster meat, from about 3 1-pound lobsters, or 2 1.5-pound lobsters, cut into pieces
  • ½ cup parmesan cheese, divided


Heat olive oil and butter in a large pot on medium. Add the diced onions and cook until translucent then add the butter and cook until golden. Add the rice and stir to coat then lightly toast the rice for 5 minutes. Add the wine and cook for 4 minutes then add the stock one cup at a time, waiting for the rice to absorb the stock before adding the next cup. 

Once the rice has completely absorbed the stock, slowly stir in 1 ½ cups parsley, reserving the remainder for garnish, and the lobster meat. Mix to combine all the ingredients then mix in the cheese. Garnish with extra parmesan cheese and parsley and serve warm!

Yesterday was the first snowfall of the winter season, and with festive decorations popping up everywhere, it officially feels like the holidays are in full swing. I am heartened by the amount of holiday spirit I have seen so far this season, despite the innumerable tragedies plaguing our world. In nearly every window I pass, there are twinkling lights and colorful decor to remind us that small wonders still exist!

For most of us, the holidays are synonymous with celebrations and parties, and parties are often synonymous with food and drinks. I love party food, any and all of it. Perhaps it is the mere association with festivities that makes it so full of flavor or the instant gratification that comes with popping it in your mouth.

When I was little, I remember parties being filled with classic finger-food appetizers like pigs and blankets, bacon wrapped scallops, stuffed mushrooms, mini quiches, and bite-size spanakopita. Be it the most interesting and unique canapés or retro snacks like deviled-eggs, I am a huge fan of indulging in party food.

Even though our gatherings may be a bit quieter this year, we can still imagine ways to celebrate the season. These spicy cornflaked chicken tenders are a perfect menu item for any sized party. They are a twist on a timeless classic [chicken fingers!] that can be made ahead of time and scaled up or down, to suit the audience you are serving!

This recipe for spicy cornflaked chicken tenders is reliable and sure to please merrymakers of all ages. You can experiment with different spices, but this is the mixture that I feel accentuates the flavor best.

Note: Chicken tenders are really just boneless, skinless chicken breasts cut into that distinctive “tender” shape. You can save money by buying chicken breasts and cutting them into “tenders” yourself.

Serves 6


  • 2 ½ pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 4 ½ cups of cornflakes
  • 2 eggs 
  • ½ cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon dried parsley
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon chipotle pepper


Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C). Trim the chicken breasts and cut into long strips.

Place the eggs in a shallow bowl or dish and beat with a whisk until combined. Place the flour into a separate shallow bowl or dish and mix in 1 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper.

Grind the cornflakes in a food processor or place in a large plastic freezer bag, seal, and roll with a rolling pin to make into a breadcrumb-like mixture.

Pour into a bowl and mix in salt, dried parsley, garlic powder, onion powder, smoked paprika, cayenne pepper, and chipotle pepper until evenly combined.

Dip one piece of the chicken into the flour, then into the egg, then into the cornflake mixture and place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Repeat until all pieces of chicken have been thoroughly coated.

Bake for 22 minutes, flipping the chicken tenders after 10 minutes so both sides cook evenly. Rotate a third time and bake 2 more minutes for extra crunch.

Serve with any dipping sauce you’d like. I recommend ketchup, honey mustard, harissa aioli, yogurt ranch, anything your heart desires!

You can cut regular boneless skinless chicken breasts into tenders
Cornflake mixture will vary in texture
Served here with regular ketchup, but the dipping sauce possibilities are endless!