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The children were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of porchetta danced in their heads...
Is that not how it goes? Just ask our talented test kitchen team, chef Josh Cohen and chef-in-residence Sara Jenkins—they'll tell you otherwise. When we asked them to come up with the holiday feast of their dreams, they outdid themselves. There are no sugarplums on their menu, but there is porchetta (Sara's speciality, and the namesake of her East Village, New York shop Porchetta), pasta with lobster and a slow-cooked fennel purée, which makes fennel taste even more like itself—and seven more truly dreamy dishes, including a winter salad to miss in summertime and a new take on a classic dessert.
We at the Food52 offices are the lucky beneficiaries of Josh and Sara's remarkable cooking every day; they can knock out a pan sauce or 46 different batches cookies or a table full of our family's weirdest jello salads from week to week. But seeing what they make when we ask them to play—to come up with their no-holds-barred holiday feast—is pretty exciting. We get hot, aromatic, slow-cooked pork—Sara's porchetta, "the market-day treat of her childhood," she tells us. We get a sultry mushroom side that, as Josh says, should send you "running to temporarily take the batteries out of your smoke alarm." We get a wintry, radicchio salad buoyant enough to make Sara miss it in the summertime. We asked them to dream, they delivered. And now they're passing their gems on to you.