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Decadent Holiday Desserts

Add seasonal cheer to your winter menu with confections ranging from simple to sensational.

You may not want to revamp your entire menu for the holidays, but adding a decadent, scratch-made holiday dessert is a stunning and memorable way to bring in the seasonal flavors diners crave (think eggnog, gingerbread, cinnamon and peppermint). For those without a dedicated pastry chef, who need to conserve labor but still want to present something special after the meal, Sysco offers a wide variety of delicious ready-made thaw-and-serve dessert treats that have great plate presentation.

Bring the Spirit

It’s not just the yule log—many desserts have strong associations with the holiday season, such as Britain’s sticky toffee pudding. Here we’ve improved on a classic by making a Sticky Toffee Pudding Cake paired with silky caramel sauce that you can pour at the table. In Italy, the winter holidays mean store shelves stocked with tall boxes of panettone—a sweet, brioche-like confection with dried fruit. We’ve used it to make a rich and festive Panettone Bread Pudding, accented with crème anglaise. If you have the time and the staff to do it, make this rich Gingerbread Chocolate Layer Cake. One of the most popular flavors of the season is eggnog. Use it to make a luxurious Eggnog Cheesecake With Gingersnap Crust. 

Or Have it Shipped to You

Not only is eggnog a favorite dairy-based holiday drink, it is also a versatile kitchen item. Chef Neil Doherty, Sysco Senior Director, Culinary Development, recommends mixing it into crème anglaise to add Christmas spirit to any dessert. And if you don’t have time to make your own desserts from scratch, Sysco’s European Imports brings stunning individual thaw-and-serve treats, such as those pictured below, straight to your door. “These elegant, upscale ready-made desserts made by Davigel, taste good, look great and require virtually no labor. Plus, they are very well priced for the market,” says Girish Fatnani, Category Specialist, Pastry, at European Imports.

Market Your Offerings

“People are more willing to indulge during the holidays,” says Bruce Barnes, Sysco Menu Consultant. “The power of suggestion works well.” Barnes suggests using a separate dessert menu, dessert card or a slugger on the table. Detailed descriptions and beautiful photos entice patrons. 

Whether serving a delicate thaw-and-serve treat or a deluxe scratch-made delicacy, this is the time to layer seasonal flavors and pull out all the stops.

After-Dinner Drinks Get an Update

Seasonal garnishes, crumbled cookies, Wholesome Farms Whipped Cream and toasted marshmallows add pizzazz and personalization to Citavo coffee and cocoa drinks during the holidays. Sysco also offers more than 50 flavors of syrup to customize your after-dinner drinks this season, including peppermint, lavender, salted caramel and pumpkin pie. Order them directly from SuppliesOnTheFly.com