The holiday meal. It’s a sight many long for year round. It’s a day that home chefs use more butter on than every day of the entire year combined. The results usually resemble rich and glistening home-cooked delicacies that even Martha Stewart would be proud of. These carefully crafted creations are then slammed in a casserole dish, carelessly carved, spooned apart, heaped onto a plate, topped with gravy and consumed in less than ten minutes by guests who won’t taste most of them due to an overload of alcohol consumption. Follow the glutton-fest they will feverishly stare towards the kitchen and ask “should we have dessert now or later?”. I hate holiday meals like this.
I honestly don’t crave Turkey or pre-cooked hams nor do I have a have strange semi-romantic affinity towards mashed potatoes.
I prefer my “Holiday Gatherings” to look something like this: Easy to enjoy food (for those of you playing at home they’re called “appetizers”). I don’t force others to sit in set places for long periods of time, but I do enforce the “no hands” rule… In the event one cousin feels the need to get frisky with another after a bottle of Boone’s Farm pulled from the endless stock in the fridge freezer or a nerve gets struck with an emotionally unstable aunt.
What sort of appetizers should you serve at a holiday party? The answer to this really depends on the style of party you were throwing. Over the top gourmet appetizers that resemble the Acropolis more than a cracker with cheese only fit a very specific type of party. Chances are, this is not your party. A laid back to semi formal gathering usually calls for a variety of finger foods. As well as bowls of munchies near wherever your guests are filling up their cup.
Some of my favorite finger foods include this simple recipe for stuffed mushroom caps. The recipe couldn’t be any easier. All you need to do is put together a mixture of soft cheeses and bacon, stuff it in a mushroom cap, place the tray in one of your cookers for fifteen minutes and you are good to go!
If you are looking for a “grab a handful” snack idea that strays away from the typical bowl of nuts. I suggest checking out my simple speed scratch method of seasoning some pre-made kettle chips. The best part about this recipe is the fact that you can create almost any seasoning or flavor combination by toasting dried spices together on a range cooker.
Most importantly, If you are planning on entertaining a group of any size over the holidays it’s key that you pre-plan whatever it is you will be serving. Sitting down with a pen and paper and figuring out just how long it will take to cook each item and what sort of free preparations can be done a day in advance will save you loads of time. It will also allow you to enjoy your party yourself.