December 29, 2012

New Year's Eve Party Appetizers + Easy Recipes




Come New Year I'm all partied out to be honest, so don't fancy slaving away in the kitchen to create a hoard of food for my cocktail party. Yes, I have one of those each year since I can remember! Now that I'm a parent, the party food also has to be tailored to little ones...

This is where the advice of the mighty-wise and fabulous kitchen doyenne Ina Garten, comes in handy: "I make only two appetizers, and assemble the rest!" 

So here are two quick and easy recipes I promised in my  Glam New Year Party post - One sweet, one savory, and a total hit with young or grown up kids! ;)

'Midnight Snacks': Herb Cheese and Beetroot Bites 
- Savory Appetizer Recipe



Ingredients:

* Ready-made mini pastry cases (or for a retro 70s twist, Vol-au-Vent cases!)
* Cream Cheese
* Chives
* Pink Peppercorns, crushed in a  pestle and mortar
* Salt to taste
* A packet of beetroot crisps - Found in most snack isles of your supermarket, or you can make your own by baking thin slices of beetroot with some salt in a low oven until crisp.

Directions:

1) Mix the cream cheese with herbs, crushed pink peppercorns and season to taste.
2) Fill each mini pastry case with the cream cheese mixture
3) Just before serving, garnish with crushed beetroot crisps for extra crunch



Mini Party Pavlovas 
Sweet Appetizer Recipe



Ingredients:

* Whipping cream chilled
* Icing sugar (confectioner's sugar) to taste
* Vanilla bean paste or extract
* Raspberry preserve (jam)
* Grenadine Syrup (optional)
* Mini lavender meringues - These are shop bought for their violet color as well as taste, but you could use regular mini white meringues too.
* Mini serving cups or shot glasses + spoons
* Piping bags

Directions:

1) Beat in a mixer with whisk attachment, your chilled cream with a teaspoon of vanilla, and enough icing  sugar to make a stiff cream that forms peaks.
2) Fill a piping bag with raspberry preserve and garnish the bottom of each serving glass with about a teaspoons of the preserve
3) Fill a piping bag with the vanilla cream and add a layer on top of the preserve
4) Add a dash of grenadine syrup if desired
5) Continue alternating cream and preserve until your serving cup is full
6) Top each with a mini meringue just before serving


These can be made a day or so in advance too, so no last minute rush! I served them onto round mirrors from my local hardware store for extra sparkle! :)








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