Adult Party Ideas and Themes Christmas Parties
Hosting a Holiday Cocktail & Appetizers Party10:00 AMC Riches
There's nothing I love more during the Christmas Holidays than to entertain family and friends!
A cocktail and appetizers party is a great way to entertain during the Holidays season because it can be a more relaxed affair in comparison with a sit-down meal.
But planning is always key to any event, to ensure not only guests have a great time but that you also enjoy the party. So here are few tips and tricks to pulling off a sparkling Cocktail & Appetizers Holiday Party, with style and ease!
Hosting a Holiday Cocktail & Appetizers Party - Planning Your Party
The first thing I usually do is plan the guest list. It will dictate the food I serve, the quantities, and of course, the layout of the entertaining space. Think not only where the guests will hang out, but don't neglect the music, seating arrangement and provide a place for coats.
For a cocktail and appetizers party guests will be standing up, mingling and generally hovering around the food table. So keeping a great flow throughout is key!
I also like to add a theme or color scheme to all my parties. I find it keeps the party look harmonious and adds a little sparkle this time of year! But no need to go OTT with decor. Your home is probably already decorated for Christmas and the Holidays, so go with your existing color scheme, easy!
This year our colors are silver and blue. Apparently silver is the new gold, so we were more than happy to oblige with the sparkling trend 😉
Holiday Cocktails & Appetizers Party - Silver & Blue Tablescape
For a cocktail and appetizers party it's a great idea to spread the food into various tables around your space to avoid crowded areas. I tend to plan out my tables at least a few days in advance, so I have plenty of time to stage where the food and drinks will go, to get my table linens ready, napkins etc.
For this party we had a large table with the main appetizers that guests could access from all sides, plus a separate bar or drinks station, and a seating come gifts window-seat area that we decorated with fluffy cushions, cozy blankets, and other blue-hued party decorations. I love this nook in the studio because it also doubles as a photo booth area!
We also teamed up with Mozaik who supplied all the beautiful tableware for our cocktail & appetizers party. I LOVE how chic their products are and was super inspired by all the beautiful disposal tableware (hello easy clean up!) in shiny silver.
To create an interesting display for the appetizers, we created various levels on the table by using silver candlesticks with Mozaik plates on top for an instant pedestal stand. You can adhere the plates using glue dots underneath to secure them.
Mozaik serving dishes, flatware and mini appetizer sets were also used throughout the table to enhance and present the food and keep thing interesting to the eye. This varying heights trick is used by all party planners on any table! 😉
Behind the main appetizers table we also hung some blue-hued paper rosettes to complete the look.
Holiday Cocktails & Appetizers Party - The Cocktail Bar
For the cocktail bar or drinks station area is also a great idea to serve a large batch cocktail to make your hostess job easier. Guests can serve themselves and means you don't have to have a ton of drinks on display. We served a Sparkling Citrus Sangria (recipe coming later in the week) and had an ice-bucket filled with champagne and other bevvies so guests could play mixologists (one less job for you!).
The decor of the bar was also super simple! I love using mirrored trays on my Holiday tables as it adds instant shine to the ensemble. We also made great use of Mozaik champagne flutes and stemless glassware for our tasty cocktails! How chic do they look?!
Love is in the detail, but no need to spend hours crafting decor for your party! We used some wired tinsel and mini Christmas tree ornaments to create sparkling drink stirrers with lollipop sticks. Literally took 5 minutes to make. But if pushed for time, don't forget you can enlist family members (kids will love this!) to help 😉
Behind the bar table we hung a gorgeous but oh-so-easy-to-make baubles garland (DIY tutorial coming soon) that added tons of sparkle and shine!
Holiday Cocktails & Appetizers Party - The Food
My motto at parties is make some, buy some. And the food is not different. Again, no need to create a complicate menu or spend hours in the kitchen. In fact, if you can pick make-ahead recipes (like the ones below) you'll reduce your stress levels considerably, and you'll thank yourself later!
I usually count about 7-10 bites or servings per person for the first hour of the party, and 5 more for the second hour after that, and 3 for each subsequent hour. Be sure to also cater for vegetarians and specific dietary requirements or allergies (ask ahead).
For this cocktail and appetizers Holiday party we bought mainly "grazing" foods likes nuts, chips, olives, veggies...and created a gorgeous charcuterie and cheeses platter with amazing fruits, veg and assorted crackers. We used Mozaik's large hammered silver serving trays as a platter, which I love!
For the buffet tags I simply printed a round circle with the appetizers names on and glued to a glitter circle punched out from cardstock. Easy or what?!
To complete our appetizers menus we also served salmon crostinni, which is a must in our home for the Holidays, along with sweet treats (all shop-bought) like macarons, German gingerbread cookies and a homemade tasty citrus trifle served in Mozaik's wine glasses.
The day before you can make the hot appetizers like the spicy Italian polpettine and the Asian-style crab cake with chili jam, and heat them up on the day. Check out the yummy recipes below!
Spicy Italian Polpettine Appetizer Recipe
Ingredients: Serves 10-12 - print this recipe.
* 600 g (21 oz) minced beef
* 400 g (14 oz) minced pork sausage meat
* 2 medium onions finely chopped
* quarter cup chopped garlic
* 1/4 cup dried herbs de provence
* 1/4 cup smoked paprika
* 1 tbsp sweet paprika
* 1/4 tbsp black pepper
* 1/4 tbsp chili powder or cayenne pepper
* oil for frying
* Paremsan and chopped parsley for garnish
In a bowl, mix all the ingredients (except oil and garnish ingredients) together until well combined. Make golf-ball sized balls and shallow fry until golden brown on all sides. Drain on kitchen paper. Serve inside Mozaik's mini appetizer bowls with a couple of tablespoons of tomato sauce (recipe below). Garnish with a sprinkling of Parmesan and chopped parsley on top using Mozaik's mini appetizers set.
For the tomato sauce:
* 800 g (28 oz) can plum tomatoes
* 1 small chopped onion
* 1/4 cup tomato puree
* 1/2 cup fresh chopped parsley
* 1/4 cup tomato ketchup
* 1/4 cup roasted red pepper (from a jar)
* 2 tbsp of cooking oil
* salt and pepper to taste
In a large saucepan add oil, saute the garlic and onions until soft. Add the red peppers and stir-fry for a couple of minutes. Add the plum tomatoes, tomato puree and ketchup. Add a cup of water if needed. Mix and simmer for 10 minutes until thicker. Add tomato ketchup and parsley and simmer for another 5 minutes on low heat. Season to taste. Reserve in the fridge, then re-heat just before serving.
Crab Cakes with Chili Jam Appetizer Recipe
Ingredients: Makes 20-24 - print this recipe.
crab cakes ingredients:
* 1/2 pound crab meat
* 300 g (10 oz) cooked and cold mashed potatoes
* 3 spring onions finely chopped
* 1 small chopped bell pepper (from a jar)
* 1/4 cup mayonnaise
* juice of half a lemon
* 1/4 tsp garlic powder
* 1 tsp salt
* 1/2 cup chopped parsley
* pinch of cayenne pepper
* 1 egg beaten
* oil for frying
* chili jam for serving
Combine all the ingredients and place in the fridge for 30 minutes to firm up a bit. Shape into inch round 1 patties, dust with flour and shallow fry in batches until golden brown on both sides. Drain on kitchen paper and serve with chili jam using Mozaik's mini appetizers set.
Holiday Cocktail & Appetizers Party - Credits
Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by Mozaik but all opinions are my own. Thanks for supporting the brands that help us bring you fresh and fabulous content daily!
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