Run out and buy yourself a box of the Chocolate Merry Mint Cookies. They taste like the Girl Scout Thin Mints. (Only difference, they are thicker and not coated in chocolate.) And while you're there, get a box of Holiday Sugars.
Pasta and *canned* clams? Yes! While some canned clams don't deserve a second look, Bar Harbor canned clams are different. They taste fresh and like the sea. Each December, I make this pasta, as my grandmother did each year. Here's how I do it:
Boil up a box of pasta. While it boils, chop a small onion. Heat a splash of olive oil in a small saucepan over medium heat. Cook the onion until it softens. Add a can of Bar Harbor chopped clams. Heat. Reserve about a cup of pasta cooking water. Drain pasta. Toss with sauce and a generous sprinkle of dried basil and oregano. Add a splash of pasta cooking water to thin sauce. Serve with parmesan if your diet allows.
Cheese and crackers, to me, are an essential part of the holiday season. Cabot's Seriously Sharp Cheddar tastes great and is really affordable. If you have more than ten bucks to spend, splurge on their four year old Cheddar. Whichever cheese you select, slice it up and put it on a plate. Add a few olives and raw vegetables to the plate and you're all set--and probably still under ten bucks.