'Take it and bake it' options abound in Penticton this holiday season

Restaurant cooking at home

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The “just take it and bake it” options for meals at home from local Penticton eateries are simple, scrumptious, and a time-saver. Let someone else do all the prep and cooking this holiday season.

If a grand turkey dinner is on your agenda, Chef Darin Paterson of Bogner’s says don’t delay ordering your takeout gourmet Christmas feast (and stay tuned for a New Year’s Eve offering).

Bogner’s once again has a drive-thru pickup option on Dec. 24 and 25, complete with instructions to heat up your dinner for two at home. On the menu: brined and roasted turkey, sage stuffing, whipped potatoes, and a variety of veggies roasted to perfection.

And that’s only the hot entrees.

“When you arrive for your pickup time, we’ll place two bags in your car. One hot, one cold,” explains Darin. “Of course, the pumpkin pie cheesecake and chocolate truffles only need plating when you’re ready for dessert.”

You’ll not only be feeding yourself, but also providing warm winter soup for those in need; for each Christmas dinner ordered, Bogner’s will donate two litres of soup to the South Okanagan Women in Need Society.

Speaking of soups, Brodo Kitchen always has one litre soups ready to go from their takeout window.

“Just grab one or two and you’re good for lunch or dinner, or put them in the freezer to heat up another day,” says Chef Paul Cecconi.

Brodo is also busy preparing its takeout Christmas dinner, a hit last year and what Paul will be serving his own family: maple sage turkey, cheddar and leek whipped potatoes, stuffing, a squash and Brussels sprout bake, with panna cotta for dessert. Order by Dec. 15 for pickup on Dec. 23.

“Heat and serve on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, or Boxing Day,” says Paul.

Once you’ve crossed Christmas dinner arrangements off your list, stock up on meals to keep on hand throughout the season.

The Bench Market has many house-made frozen meal options on its Bench@Home menu. Take and bake dishes such as Shepherd’s Pie, meat or vegetarian lasagna, or penne and cheese. Add on items from the Bench’s fine foods selection to complete dinner, from soups (ready made or a tasty soup mix), to pancake mixes or the Bench’s own granola blends for brunch.

Wanting to venture out for breakfast? Stewart Glynes, co-owner, says get ready for “Brunchcation” at the Bench.

“Take a vacation from your kitchen and come in for brunch,” he says. The full brunch menu normally offered only on weekends will be available from Dec. 18 to 30.

While you’re there, pick up a thin-crust pizza to go. The options may change, but look for a Sicilian version or the Popeye with spinach and sun-dried tomatoes.

“Just throw it in the oven and heat through,” explains Stewart.

On top of its plant-based seasonal treats, Gratify recently added take and bake plant-based pizzas to its menu.

“The crusts come from Jaide & Joel’s Baking in Kelowna, and we’ve had people tell us they are as good as or better than other ‘usual’ crusts,” says co-owner Ryan Oickle.

Topped with Gratify’s house made sauces, these 10-inch vegan pizzas come in three flavours – cheese lovers, spinach and artichoke, and Mediterranean.

Another good grab-and-go option are three gluten-free wraps. Choose the soft taco, Mediterranean, or chickpea salad wrap, and pair with spinach dip, beet hummus, or black bean dip.

“These would all be great for holiday parties or New Year’s,” says Ryan.

Stewart from The Bench sums things up nicely: “We’re fully stocked, December is off to a great start, and we’re ready to have an awesome Christmas.”

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