The holiday season is all about joy, warmth, festive get-togethers, and, of course, delicious food. In the spirit of celebrating the festive season by way of our taste buds, the team at Mayfair is delighted to share some of our favorite holiday recipes and local New Braunfels dining and shopping secrets so you can find the perfect ingredient to elevate your holiday feast or a last-minute stocking stuffer for the fellow foodie in your life.
Join us on this culinary journey through mouth-watering recipes, cherished holiday traditions, and the best New Braunfels has to offer.
The Mayfair Team’s Favorite Holiday Recipes
Green Bean Casserole
Todd Richert, Broker
- 2 cans of green beans (substitute fresh if desired)
- 1 can cream of mushroom soup
- ½ cup milk
- 1 tsp soy sauce
- Black pepper as desired
- 1 1/3 cups french fried onion rings
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Stir soup mix, soy sauce, milk, black pepper, green beans, and 2/3 of the onion rings together in a 1 ½ quart casserole dish.
- Bake for 25 minutes or until bubbling.
- Remove and stir; add the remaining onion rings on top.
- Bake for an additional 5 minutes or until onions are golden brown.
Butter Bundt Bread
Thad Rutherford, President & CEO
- 1 stick butter
- 3 packages of Hungry Jack biscuits (10 oz)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Melt one stick of butter in a bundt pan.
- Arrange the biscuits in the pan without separating them.
- Bake for 25-35 minutes.
- Use a rack to cool.
Grandma’s Simple Sage Cornbread Stuffing
Terry Ramirez, Vice President of Operations
- 6 cups of pre-prepared cornbread, slightly stale/dry and broken into chunks
- ½ stick of butter
- 3-4 stalks of celery, chopped
- 1 large onion, diced
- 1 cup turkey, chicken, or vegetable stock
- 2 tablespoons sage (fresh chopped if available, dried if not)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Melt your butter in a large skillet, ideally cast iron.
- Cook onion and celery until they just start to soften and become translucent.
- Add half of your stock and simmer on low heat for 5 minutes, uncovered.
- Turn off the heat. Stir in the cornbread, sage, and the rest of the stock.
- Dump the stuffing mix into a baking dish and bake for about 30 minutes, or until the top layer of stuffing begins to brown and crisp.
James Tipton, Development Manager
- 1 bag Pepperidge Farm cornbread stuffing
- 1 bag Pepperidge Farm herb-seasoned stuffing
- 1 lb breakfast sausage
- 1 cup onion, chopped
- 1 cup celery, chopped
- 3 eggs
- ¼ cup butter, melted
- 4 cups chicken broth
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Mix stuffing, eggs, and butter.
- In a skillet, brown the sausage, then add the celery and onion. Cook until translucent.
- Add the sausage and vegetables to the stuffing mix.
- Add chicken broth until the stuffing is very moist.
- Bake for 30 minutes or until fully heated through.
Slow Cooker Pumpkin Pecan Bread Pudding
Kristi Robinson, Director of Marketing & Community Relations
- 8 cups stale (or oven-dried) bread, cut into cubes
- ½ cup toasted pecans, chopped
- ½ cup cinnamon chips
- 4 eggs
- 1 cup canned pumpkin (pure pumpkin, not pumpkin pie filling)
- 1 cup heavy cream
- ½ cup brown sugar, packed
- ½ cup butter, melted
- 1 tsp vanilla
- ½ tsp cinnamon
- ½ tsp nutmeg
- ¼ tsp ground ginger
- 1/8 tsp ground cloves
- Grease your slow cooker and place your bread cubes, cinnamon chips, and toasted pecans inside.
- Whisk your eggs with the pumpkin, cream, sugar, butter, and spices.
- Pour the egg mixture over the bread cubes; if necessary, stir very gently to ensure complete coating.
- Place the lid on your slow cooker and cook on low heat for around 4 hours.
- Optional: Serve with vanilla ice cream!
Chip Mills, Senior Vice President
- Hot grease
- Place turkey in hot grease, and don’t burn down the neighborhood—thanks, Chip!
Mayfair’s Favorite Holiday Traditions and Decor
What good is an epic Christmas feast if you don’t have the decor to go with it and great people to join the celebration? The crew at Mayfair also has some thoughts about those all-important holiday aesthetics and the beloved family traditions that stand the test of time:
- Tree decorating (James Tipton). “Whenever our tree goes up (usually the first week of November), everyone in the house takes turns hanging their personal Christmas ornaments until the tree is full. It’s a simple but fun time to get together and watch that year’s tree come to life.”
- Advent calendars (Kristi Robinson). “My favorite home decoration is our advent calendar. My mom made it when our daughter was born, and we count down the days until Christmas by pinning fabric items to the holiday scene. As she got older, we started racing to see who could mark the most—it helps my record greatly now that she’s a teenager and sleeps in half the month!”
- Stockings (Chip Mills). “I remember the childhood Christmas stockings that my mom and grandmother made. Mine was Frosty the Snowman.”
- Cut-your-own Christmas tree (Thad Rutherford). “I loved when I used to take the kids to Elgin and cut down a Christmas tree, even in Texas! (Although it was small…)”
- Christmas morning stockings (Terry Ramirez). “I love having the stockings hanging empty all month long. In our house, Santa fills the stockings, so it’s always a joy to watch the kids (at any age) come down Christmas morning to see their stockings filled.”
- Christmas light cruise (Todd Richert). “My favorite Christmas tradition is driving around on Christmas Eve looking at Christmas lights, then heading to midnight mass.”
Mayfair’s Favorite Holiday Hotspots for Shopping
If you still need some gift ideas, these New Braunfels restaurants and gift shops are Holiday game-changers. Here are some of our favorite local shopping (and eating) secrets:
- Farmer’s Market & 2tarts (James Tipton). “We’re big fans of the farmers market that sets up in the Krause parking lot every Saturday. There are so many different vendors and random things you can buy, from food to houseplants. We are also guaranteed to make our way through 2tarts at least once over the holidays for a fun treat.”
- New Braunfels Smokehouse & Stahlman’s at Bear Creek (Kristi Robinson). “I always stop by New Braunfels Smokehouse during the holidays for Pecan and Raspberry Kringle. They are delicious! Then Stahlman’s at Bear Creek has amazing local jams, jellies, sauces, and even cute fresh holiday décor.”
- New Braunfels Candle Company. Everyone loves a nice candle for a Christmas present, and you won’t find any finer than the handmade offerings right here in New Braunfels at the New Braunfels Candle Company on Castell Avenue. In addition to some of the highest quality candles in Texas, they also have candle-making classes and a lovely line of bath and body products.
- New Braunfels Art League. For a truly one-of-a-kind gift, there’s no better source than your friendly local artists—and the New Braunfels Art League has the work of hundreds of them curated in one convenient location for shopping or just a little art appreciation. Put the New Braunfels Art League on your list of destinations for holiday shopping this year, and you’re sure to find something brand new for that person who truly has everything.
Mayfair – Your Home for the Holidays and New Braunfels Dining
The whole team at Mayfair would like to wish you and yours a wonderful holiday season this year, and we look forward to seeing you in the new year.
Several attractions make New Braunfels, Texas, a memorable and enjoyable location. From museums to zoos, the New Braunfels community has it all. Other activities like shopping, biking, and sports may be enjoyable, but if the heat is too much or you want something less physical, going tubing is a fantastic alternative. For those who enjoy river tubing or want to experience it for the first time, consider planning a day of tubing at the Comal or Guadalupe Rivers!
What Is River Tubing?
River tubing involves riding an inner tube down a river. This can be done in a relaxing or energetic manner, as many people who use river tubes do so for sport. No matter your physique or age, anyone can enjoy Comal and Guadalupe river tubing.
River tubing is most often a more gentle activity than other water activities. You can either bring your own tube or rent one from a local company. Tubing usually takes place at a part of the water with a strong enough current to let you travel. While you may get wet, you can avoid falling off of the tube entirely. Of course, it’s highly recommended to wear a safety vest in case you do go in the water.
Comal River Float
Both residents and vacationers in New Braunfels have enjoyed navigating the Comal River, and for good reason. The river is shorter than the nearby Guadalupe River, and the water is generally more calm. The Comal River spans nearly two and a half miles, with a temperature fluctuating between 70 and 72 degrees Fahrenheit. For beginners or those wanting a shorter and more relaxing experience, Comal River tubing may be the activity for you.
The Comal River tends to get quite busy during the late spring up to early fall. Texas is known for its significant heat in the summer, and the river’s calm and refreshing water may be just what you need.
Guadalupe River Float
The Guadalupe River is much larger than the Comal River, spanning nearly 230 miles from the San Antonio Bay to the Gulf of Mexico.
For more experienced swimmers and tubing enthusiasts, the Guadalupe River offers a longer and more scenic view of New Braunfels. If you don’t mind a longer and more involved tubing experience, the Guadalupe River can be a memorable break from the intense Texas heat.
The Rules of River Tubing
If you’re considering visiting either the Comal or Guadalupe River to enjoy a day of tubing, there are some ground rules you must be aware of.
Any disposable items, including cans, cups, bags, boxes, and bottles, are banned from the rivers. A New Braunfels disposable can ban was put into effect in order to keep rivers clean. With clean rivers, more people continue to come to visit the local community and enjoy tubing, swimming, fishing, and more.
If you still want to bring food and beverages to the river, you’re allowed to bring resealable containers and bottles. Every person is allowed to bring one cooler, which can’t exceed 30 quarts in size.
There are other rules to keep in mind to protect both the rivers and each other:
- Any noise devices (stereos, phones, etc.) cannot be audible past 50 feet.
- No glass or foam containers.
- No littering.
- All inner tubes cannot exceed five feet in diameter.
- Each person is limited to two tubes.
By adhering to the local law, everyone can enjoy this wonderful attraction without worrying about becoming injured or put in danger.
How to Prepare for Your Tubing Adventure
Once you’ve decided which river you’d like to experience and what the rules are, it’s time to prepare for your fun and exciting day!
There are certain items you’ll want to consider bringing along to either river. While none are required, each can make the tubing experience more enjoyable for everyone.
- Sunblock – The Texas heat can become intense, and you don’t want to dismiss the sun’s beaming rays, either. Make sure you bring sunblock and apply it before and during your tubing journey. The water may help you cool off, but your skin will gain extra protection from the sun by applying sunblock. This is especially true for anyone looking to experience the Guadalupe River, as these tubing sessions can last much longer than those on the Comal River.
- Drinking water or beverages – Nothing beats relaxing in a tube navigating gently down the river alongside a cold, refreshing beverage. Keep in mind that your beverage should be kept in a resealable bottle, as disposable bottles and cups are banned from both rivers. If the heat is a bit much, you’ll want to cool off with a cold beverage of your choice.
- Athletic shoes – Both the Comal and Guadalupe Rivers contain rocks, vegetation, mud, and other elements commonly found alongside water. It’s crucial you wear proper footwear while tubing, as this will protect your feet should you need to get out. If you fall out of your tube, you can walk along the ground without worrying about injury.
- Waterproof phone case and dry sack – It may seem tempting to bring multiple items along for the tubing journey, but it’s recommended to only bring what you need. If you’re bringing your phone, put it in a sack or waterproof case to protect it.
Once you’ve gathered all of the necessary items, you’re ready to experience a tubing adventure you can only find in New Braunfels.
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