If your Christmas wish is a meal without all the fuss, a number of restaurants are open to help make that a reality.

Christmas is a time to bask in the warm glow of family and friends. It's also a time when everyone is exhausted after shopping for all those loved ones. If making a big holiday meal is not on your to-do list, you can turn to these restaurants who are serving Christmas Eve, Christmas Day or both.

Padre Hotel (1702 18th St.): Open 6 a.m.-10 p.m. Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.

Cafe Med (4809 Stockdale Highway): Open Christmas Eve from noon-8 p.m. Closed Christmas Day.

Crest Bar and Grill (5025 Wible Road): Open Christmas Eve from 7 a.m.-6 p.m. Closed Christmas Day.

Buck Owens' Crystal Palace (2800 Buck Owens Blvd.): Open for Christmas Eve brunch from 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. with photos with Santa and bottomless mimosas (for those 21 and over).

Black Angus Steakhouse (3601 Rosedale Highway): Open Christmas Eve from 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Closed Christmas Day.

Famous Dave's Bar-B-Que (7777 Rosedale Highway): Open Christmas Eve from 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Closed Christmas Day.

Romano's Macaroni Grill (8850 Rosedale Highway): Open Christmas Eve from 11 a.m.-8 p.m. Open Christmas Day from noon-8 p.m.

Marie Callender's (two locations): Open Christmas Eve from 9 a.m.-8 p.m. Open Christmas Day from 11 a.m.-9 p.m.

IHOP (multiple locations): Open Christmas Eve from 6 a.m.-6 p.m. Open Christmas Day from 6 a.m.-2 p.m.

Denny's (multiple locations): Open 24 hours Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.

Golden Corral (5001 Ming Ave.): Open Christmas Eve from 10 a.m.-9 p.m. Open Christmas Day from 11 a.m.-6 p.m.

HomeTown Buffet (4221 S H St.): Open Christmas Eve from 8 a.m.-3 p.m. Open Christmas Day from 11 a.m.-6 p.m.

Sizzler (two locations): Open Christmas Eve and Christmas Day from 11 a.m.-9:30 p.m.

Lumberjacks (2673 Mt. Vernon Ave.): Open Christmas Eve and Christmas Day from 7 a.m.-10 p.m.

Black Bear Diner (4102 California Ave.): Open Christmas Eve from 6 a.m.-2 p.m. Open Christmas Day from 6 a.m.-10 p.m.

Coco's Bakery Restaurant (7985 Rosedale Highway): Open Christmas Eve from 7 a.m.-8 p.m. Open Christmas Day from 8 a.m.-8 p.m.

If you know of any local restaurants open for the holiday that are not included here, send them to thedish@bakersfield.com.

Ugly sweater, pretty treat

Speaking of Christmas, Sweet Surrender is feeling the spirit of the season with its upcoming Ugly Christmas Sweater Party. Don your most bedazzled or tacky holiday sweater and head to the store (6439 Ming Ave.) on Monday to receive a coupon good for a free cupcake on your next visit. 

Dole serving up Star Wars

This week, many of our minds were focused on a galaxy far, far away but Dole, one of the world’s leading providers of fresh produce, has had the Star Wars universe in mind for some time now.

It launched an in-store mobile app designed to help parents rally their kids and families to eat and live healthier. The app is the latest chapter in Dole’s multiyear nutritional collaboration with Disney, currently focused on this tie-in with "Star Wars: The Last Jedi."

Through the app, available for iOS and Android, users can access character-inspired recipes, limited-edition banana stickers and a sweepstakes offering the chance to win weekly prizes.

Scan specially marked Dole banana stickers and pineapple tags at supermarkets throughout the U.S. and Canada to unlock character-specific bios, recipes and photo filters, which can be collected, customized and shared.

Characters such as Rey, BB-8, Chewbacca, RD-D2 and C-3PO will become accessible when scanned on Dole products including bananas, pineapples, blueberries, cauliflower, celery, celery hearts and classic iceberg, classic romaine, hearts of romaine, garden salad, American blend, very veggie and shredded lettuce salads and salad blends.

Other engagement techniques allow users to become eligible for weekly drawings for remote-controlled, voice-activated BB-8 toys from Spinmaster or a set of standard figures from Sideshow.

And, of course, there are the recipes. Healthy snacks and meals inspired by the beloved franchise. To whet your appetite, we're including a couple of those recipes here.

Tatooine blue milk

(Inspired by Luke Skywalker and the Millennium Falcon)

Serves 2

1 cup unsweetened light coconut milk

1 1/2 Dole bananas, peeled and sliced

1 tablespoon maple syrup

1/4 teaspoon vegan blue food coloring

1 cup ice cubes

Combine coconut milk, bananas, maple syrup, cinnamon, food coloring, and ice in blender. Cover; blend until smooth.

The Resistance salad

(Inspired by X-Wing Starfighters)

Serves 4

16 large raw shrimp, peeled and deveined

2 Dole bananas, peeled, each banana cut into 4 even portions

1/2 to 1 teaspoon Old Bay seasoning

1 to 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1 rounded teaspoon curry powder

2 cups Dole baby spinach

2 cups Dole baby arugula

1 cup Dole pineapple, finely diced

2 tablespoons dried cherries

2 tablespoons pistachio nuts

8 wooden skewers, soaked in water for 10 minutes before using

Preheat grill to medium. Thread four shrimp onto four skewers. Thread one banana half onto each of the other four skewers. Lightly dust each skewer with Old Bay seasoning.

Place each skewer on the grill and cook for 2 to 3 minutes on each side or until the shrimp is cooked and the bananas are charred.

Combine mustard, olive oil, lemon juice and curry in a small bowl. Whisk to blend. Brush each skewer with dressing.

Combine spinach, arugula, pineapple, cherries and pistachios in a large bowl. Pour remaining dressing over and toss gently to combine.

Other fun options include frozen fighter pops, using fresh fruit; wookiee noodles, a chicken and pineapple stir fry; The First Order smoothie; BB-8 roundabout sundae; and porgs and greens aka Thai steamed vegetables inspired by the porgs. Download the app or visit dole.com/disney for more information.

Stefani Dias can be reached at 661-395-7488. Follow her on Twitter at @realstefanidias.

(1) comment

Jack Sims

Those dining options and recipe look really great, but if you love snacks, why not try Tiger Nuts? It's "probably the healthiest snack food on the market". It's not only gluten-free but nut-free too, check this link out for more recipes https://www.tigernutsusa.com/blogs/recipes/tiger-nuts-flour-chocolate-chip-cookie-recipe

Tiger Nuts flour is available at www.tigernutsusa.com.

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