Hosting a New Year’s Eve party? Take my advice, and make your appetizers well in advance. This way, you won’t be trapped in the kitchen while your guests are
wearing lamp shades sipping champagne in another room. Here are links to my favorite make-ahead dips, spreads, and canapes:
Kale Pesto. This garlicky, lemony, pesto is delicious on…everything. Serve it with crackers at your next cocktail party, or as a gorgeous topping for grilled chicken or baked salmon. Or, do what I did yesterday, and stir it into steaming strands of angel hair pasta. Yum, yum, yum. The easy recipe:
Easy-Peazy Cheese Crackers. These two-ingredient crackers are crisp, delicious, and elegant. I wouldn’t hesitate to serve them at a swanky cocktail gathering. They make terrific after-school snacks, too. In fact, your kids will probably leap at the chance to help you make them. Ready for some fun? Here’s the simple recipe:
Onion and Asiago Rounds. These two-bite cocktail appetizers are crisp, creamy, and screamingly-delicious. They are also a snap to make. Here’s my step-by-step recipe:
Chicken and Lemon Polpettine. These old-world Italian meatballs (which we should never confuse with American meatballs) are flavored with Parmesan cheese, fragrant herbs, and a big burst of lemon. Poke ’em with a cocktail pick, and you’ll have a swoon-worthy appetizer for New Year’s Eve! The recipe:
Cecina — pronounced “chay-CHEE-na” — is a Tuscan flatbread composed entirely of garbanzo bean flour, water, and seasonings. It’s absolutely delicious. It’s naturally gluten-free. And it’s so easy to make you can wear a blindfold. My step-by-step recipe:
Chive Pesto. Yesterday, I took some freshly-snipped chives, and processed them together with garlic, almonds, Parmesan cheese and a little olive oil. The result? Well, let’s just say that after one bite, my eyes rolled to the back of my head. After two bites, I knew I’d have to share the recipe with you:
Herbed Cheese Straws.These cheese straws are crazy-delicious. Think of elongated “Cheetos,” kissed by the sharp tang of real cheddar and the heavenly air of Herbes de Provence. Serve the straws at your next cocktail party, and watch them disappear. Or, just do as I did last night, and hog them all for yourself! Here’s the recipe.
Angelic Zucchini Fritters. What’s the difference between a good zucchini fritter and great one? Well, first the crust. It should be delightfully crunchy. Then the interior should be firm but smooth, and loaded with good zucchini flavor, plus other tastes such as fresh lemon and chive. And finally, when you bite into the fritter, you should hear a choir of angels sing. Such exquisiteness is easily produced. Here’s proof:
Potato Croquettes. These are crunchy on the outside, and smooth and creamy on the inside. I make them this way:
Bacon-Wrapped Grissini. Whenever I retrieve a batch of Bacon-wrapped Grissini from the oven, Lily the Beagle appears at the kitchen door. And who can blame her? These cocktail-appetizers are smokey, sweet, and tender-crisp. To try them is to love them. Fortunately they are no trouble to make:
Roasted Radishes with Honey, Lemon, and Thyme. What’s crispy-tender and slightly-sweet? My version of roasted radishes! Enjoy them as a healthy snack, or serve them as a side dish. You can even turn them into Crostini, just as I did last night. Here’s the step-by-step.
Did you find something delicious to serve in the links above? Perhaps you can let me know by leaving a comment. You can also let me know what — if anything — you are doing to ring in the New Year!
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