Q: Do you have any good ideas for room temperature appetizers I can make in advance? I'm having a large party and don't have the time, refrigerator space, or oven space to make too many hot or cold things. Thanks!
Q: I'm hosting a holiday cocktail party and have a menu of both sweet and savory snacks. The spread is already vegetarian friendly, but it's dairy-heavy and I've just found out that one of my guests is a vegan. Any ideas for vegan hors d'oeuvres that aren't just a veggie plate with hummus?
Let's talk about holiday appetizers and cocktail party snacks. Everyone needs just one or two really reliable crowd-pleasers around the holidays, no? It's a relief for a cook to set out a plate of tasty bites while he puts the finishing touches on a meal. And in the spirit of giving, let me offer you the prettiest, easiest, and most lusciously decadent appetizer I know: hot cheese smothered in sweet cranberry sauce. I mean, hello.
These might just be the crackers to top all other crackers. They're flecked all the way through with roasted nuts and chewy bits of cranberry, and they're crunchy enough to satisfy any snack-addict. Rosemary adds its piney, fresh presence, while whole wheat gives them a savory depth. The crackers are sturdy enough to spread with cheese or hold some dip, but they're also fantastic on all on their own as a mid-afternoon snack. For pre-dinner cheese plate or a handy hostess gift, trust me: these crackers bring it to win it.
It might seem old-fashioned, but the classic holiday relish tray, with its assortment of pickled vegetables, briny olives and crudité, is actually a smart way to start a big holiday meal: crunchy, a little salty and not too heavy. But that doesn't mean you have to stick to grandma's cut-glass tray and canned black olives. Here are 12 fresh recipes and ideas for putting together a more modern relish tray.
If you invite me to a potluck style dinner and ask for something specific, I'll deliver. If you know what you want, it's yours. (You'll have your mac and cheese for Thanksgiving, Dad!) If you ask me to bring my favorite dish, I will disobey, because the veggie tray always gets eaten.
We all have one. You know, a recipe that you're probably a little ashamed of, either because it is unglamorous or unhealthy (or both). Candied Apple Dip is one of those recipes I wish I didn't know existed. Because, quite simply, it is absolutely delicious, even if it is just plain wrong.
It's squash and pumpkin time! And that means it's roasted pumpkin (and squash) seed time, too! Roasted seeds are a delicious autumn treat and well worth the tiny bit of effort needed to produce this salty, crunchy, toasty snack.
One of my favorite go-to desserts in the colder months is shortbread. It's ridiculously simple to make, the kitchen is always stocked with the four necessary ingredients (flour, sugar, butter, salt!), and the end result presents beautifully.
However, shortbread need not always be sweet. Savory shortbread is an excellent, less expected pair with hearty fall soups and salads, or even as an elegant appetizer to nosh on over cocktails with friends.
Warning: This will fill your home with the most maddening, irresistible, and mouth-watering aromas imaginable. We're talking about whole heads of garlic roasted with olive oil until each individual clove is completely golden and butter-soft — perfect for spreading on a spare piece of baguette or mashing into a salad dressing. Perfect, really, for just about anything.