Ina Garten, Barefoot Contessa on The Foodnetwork, suggests these entertaining tips “I try to have one thing I can make the day before, one thing served at room temperature that can be made early in the day, and one thing I can throw in the oven when the guests arrive.”
This is brilliant advice which allows the host to relax more and enjoy the party and not be stuck in the kitchen. Also, it’s certainly acceptable to include snacks and appetizers which are store bought.
Price Chopper or other purchased items:
A selection of these type are nice to have set out while guests begin to arrive and can easily help themselves.
Champagne, Sparkling wine and/or your signature punch
Cheese board, Vermont Butter & Cheese goat cheese, Shelburne Farms cheddar, Apple smoked gruyere or any variety of your favorites.
Fruit,Sweet Energy apricots, dates, grapes, any fresh fruit in season that can be skewered with a tooth pick.
Vegetables, carrots, radishes, celery, gherkins, John Cooper’s Christmas pickles, cut into one or two bite shapes.
Crackers/chips, Kellogg’s Cracker Chips – Sea salt flavor, Triscuits, water crackers, Keebler Club crackers.
Sour cream mixed with onion soup mix, Hannaford bacon horseradish dip.
Items made the day prior to party:
Most desserts can fit into this category. Since this is New Years, when you’re in Christmas cookie mode earlier in December, put 3-4 dozen in the freezer.
These choices could be made the morning of or the day prior and heated up as guests begin to arrive:
Turkey meatballs, Thanksgiving rolled into one bite.
Puff pastry pierogies, sautéed ground pork, cabbage, scallion, sour cream and dill filling.
These elements can be prepared in the morning then put together and heated as guests arrive:
Bagel Tuna melts, halve bagel, mix tuna with onion soup mix, mayo, lemon juice, and dill, top with cheese toast in oven. Can be cut into quarters or smaller bite size pieces.
Baked sweet potato fries tossed in olive oil with thyme, salt, pepper, after 30 – 45 minutes remove from oven and sprinkle with asiago cheese and pumpkin pie spice.
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