Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

Holiday Cocktail Party for 18


rhinopias
 Share

Recommended Posts

I own a retail store and have a staff of 22 to 28 year olds to host for a staff holiday party. Well let me tell you these boys like their drink and after ten years of taking them out to restaurants it's simply become to stressful for me. Last year I had them all to my place and had a caterer prep most of the food for me. It went over so well that they requested the same party this year, basically because they can pour their own drinks. However, this year I will be doing all the cooking. Below is what I'm serving. Anyone else hosting a holiday party?

Large cheese board

Butternut squash soup "shooters" w/ crispy sage

Crab cakes w/ Chili lime aioli

Chipotle - Sesame chicken skewers

Porcini and goat cheese crostini

Chilled shrimp w/ Cilantro almond dip

Pancetta crisps w/ goat cheese and pear

Panko scallops w/ a chile chutney

A selection of wild game sausages w/ an asst of mustards

Dukkah crusted lamb chops

Mini roast beef sandwiches w/ roquefort and caramelized shallots

All items to be passed except for cheese board, shrimp, and sausage.

I've made everything before and most of it can be done ahead. I will have one person to be reheating and cleaning while my business partner and I serve. Now, how to get them out before 4am????

Any thoughts or ideas would be great.

Edited by rhinopias (log)
Link to comment
Share on other sites

As much as I like the idea of chiles, they can obliterate other flavors with great ease, including those of cocktails. I mean, if that aioli is up to snuff, you're not going to taste most drinks, much less a cheese platter or pancetta.

Chris Amirault

eG Ethics Signatory

Sir Luscious got gator belts and patty melts

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Now, how to get them out before 4am????

If you figure that out, please let me know... I'm still working on how to get my overnight guests out of here before it's dinner time again EVERY week! :)

I'm having an appetizer & cocktail party for New Year's, and haven't decided on a menu yet. Your choices sound terrific to me... kinda rustic & hearty... which I guess is a *really* good thing if your guests are going to be imbibing in quantity! The only thing I'd add is some sort/form of bread... again, something I learned to do when there is going to be a good deal of alcohol consumption. To be fair, the folks I usually feed are extremely partial to getting their "homemade bread fix" when they come here, so we may go through a larger amount than is usual & customary, as they say. I do know that I'll have made focaccia, pita, teensy versions of my everyday dinner rolls, and homemade "wheat thins" to be included in my holiday spread.

Do you make your own dukkah?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks for pointing out the spiciness of the chilis, I might need to rethink the spice level.

Sunny, I'm right with you on the bread....the precise reason I have the mini sandwiches in last, however maybe I should add a savory biscotti or an ice box cracker. And I do make my own dukkah.

I am terrible with desserts and was considering a platter of purchased chocolates. Any suggestions for a platter or passed desert that wouldn't require silverware?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I am terrible with desserts and was considering a platter of purchased chocolates. Any suggestions for a platter or passed desert that wouldn't require silverware?

I've really only started getting better with desserts over the past few years... I've not much of a sweet tooth, so it's never been a huge priority for me. But I still tend to want to focus on the other goodies, so my dessert offerings tend to be low-key. While I'm still hashing out my holiday party menu, I do have the desserts all but picked out...

White chocolate truffles, rolled in different goodies and with different flavors (hazelnuts w/Frangelico, chopped pecans with Tia Maria, chopped Heath bars with B&B - my personal pick.) These can be made ages in advance and frozen; just my style.

Mini cheesecake tartlets in those teensy phyllo cups

Fudge brownies, precut in nearly bite-sized pieces

Cream puffs - super easy to make, elegant, and ready to be filled with a variety of squooshy stuff (vanilla cream, chocolate mousse, preserves, and ice cream)

And, lastly... cookies. LOTS of different cookies.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

To get folks to depart in a timely fashion -

run out of booze. That works fastest.

second choice = run out of ice. Not always successful, depending on how impaired tastebuds have become.

third choice - run out of food. Ultimately successful, but can take a while.

in a real pinch, call the cops on your own party. I try to avoid that one. :rolleyes::raz:

Sounds like a fun feast and a good party to attend. Are you hiring? :wink:

"You dont know everything in the world! You just know how to read!" -an ah-hah! moment for 6-yr old Miss O.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

To get folks to depart in a timely fashion -

run out of booze.  That works fastest.

second choice = run out of ice.  Not always successful, depending on how impaired tastebuds have become.

third choice - run out of food. Ultimately successful, but can take a while.

in a real pinch, call the cops on your own party.  I try to avoid that one.  :rolleyes:  :raz:

Sounds like a fun feast and a good party to attend. Are you hiring?  :wink:

These are quite funny, however last year the boys thought I had run out of booze, overstock was on the back porch, and they sent two people out the back and up the street to buy more without checking with me! It really is a big night for them.

I will have one person in the kitchen reheating, plating, and cleaning. The bar will be self service, and my partner and I will be serving.

Bummer is today, a few days before the party, I find out one guest is a vegetarian! UGH!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Bummer is today, a few days before the party, I find out one guest is a vegetarian! UGH!

Oh, gods, I HATE when this happens! (And it happens to me several times a year.) One thing I try to do is to make sure there are "filling" things... I spent several years eschewing meat, and a lot of times your options are limited to rabbit food... salads, sprouts, raw veggie trays, etc. I like to give vegetarians at least a couple of options that are hearty. Here are a few I've done in the past with success:

Veggie Pizza Pies - either buy those little tart shells or you can make your own (I usually do; it's not that hard... just press pie crust dough into greased muffin tins,) bake them off slightly, and fill with a mixture of sauteed or (my preference) roasted veggies, marinara or your favorite pizza sauce, fresh grated parmesan, and chunks of buffalo mozzarella. I like to include eggplant in the mix; it's meaty and lends itself well, I think. Also roasted peppers, mushrooms, etc.. you know the drill. Top them off with a little more cheese & bake til bubbly. Not terribly fancy - unless you go nuts with the filling - but a general crowd pleaser. I have to mark them, visibly, as "vegetarian" or the general hordes will wipe 'em out.

Mini Pitas - I make them about 3 1/2" in diameter, flatten out the poof once they've cooled, and top them with whatever strikes my fancy. A few that stick out in my head - hummus, a pile of red pepper & onion relish, and a dab of yogurt. A curried dry dal I make from lima beans (had that for dinner last night!) with a slice of hot pepper and some chutney & a sprig of mint. Spread with Boursin (or equivalent homemade herby cheesy spready stuff) and top with sliced avocado & alfalfa sprouts (not sure you can get decent avocados this time of year.) I've also done the refried beans/lettuce/cheese/mexi-rice/sour cream thing. But you get the idea... the possibilities are pretty wide open.

Tabbouleh or large-gauge couscous salad, pea salad, or some other "hearty" salad with grains, beans, legumes, or something... served in endive or other pick-uppable leaves.

If you have little cups, maybe single servings of vegetarian red beans & rice would work; I've never done it this way, but it's usually a hit with vegetarian guests when I just put it in a big chafing dish on a buffet.

Hope everything goes swimmingly for your party... and I hope you share pictures after!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...