Monday, November 21, 2011

Pre Party

My plan for the menu was this: potato rings, artichoke dip, bread sticks, ham and asparagus roll ups, chocolate covered strawberries, and I had planned on having caprese toothpicks, calamari, raspberries, and s'mores but they never made it out. For drinks we had sparkling amaretto sours, Hornsby, and wine, red and white. I wish I had taken pictures of all of this but there was just no time! I was scrambling at the end, even while the guests were there. Here is the rundown of what I did and how I tweaked or messed up these recipes!
Potato Rings:
It took me three days to make these since you need to refrigerate and freeze these for an extended period of time. {I just whipped up the ranch from a Hidden Valley packet instead of doing the homemade version} Everything went smoothly on the first day (Directions 1-7). Where things literally and figuratively fell apart was steps 8-11. I kept my pan in the fridge for probably 24 hours and when I went to cut my rings out they totally fell apart. :( I tried to reconstruct them but they still fell apart especially when I dipped them in the dry and wet mixtures. Since that was already a very messy task I got super frustrated and ended up making them into little mounds about the size of a smushed golf ball. I froze those for another 24-ish hours.
Honestly, I probably should have made the mixture on a smaller pan for a thicker outcome and Jenny (one of the site's genius editors) suggested I put less cream in for a more solid mixture. {You can see our interaction in the comments below, she was very sweet and helpful! :)}
The day of the party I decided to make these first since I didn't want 'fried smell' in the house when the guests came. I tried my first one {after it cooled, duh} and wasn't super impressed, which at that point I was like "just throw them away!" {I turned into a bit of stress ball at this point} But I decided I put that much work into them I'll just put them out and if no one likes them well, there goes that.
Artichoke Dip:
This was super easy; I roasted the garlic while I was frying the potato balls. And everything else was super easy! I used cream cheese instead of marscapone since I live in a food desert. It was so good we made it the next night for a snacky dinner with the leftovers from the party. And we already had some Stacey's Pita Chips so we used those. (Even though I forgot to put them out until half way through the party so people used the bread sticks instead! :))
Bread sticks:
These guys turned out not how I planned not as cheesy since the Gruyere I got was seriously mild. But good for when your host forgets to put out pita chips!
Ham and Asparagus Roll-ups:
These are of course really easy as well. I wanted to use rosemary ham that you can get at the Costco's in Charlotte but not Baltimore! :( So I used regular ham from Costco and sliced it to fit in the roll up. We put cheese in them the next day for dinner but I don't think you really need it, they already taste like they have cheese in them.
Chocolate Covered Strawberries:
There are a million ways to do chocolate covered fruit but I did 2 cups semi-sweet morsels and 1 cup of heated heavy whipping cream. I heated the cream in the microwave for a minute or 2 and poured it on the chips and stirred. That's it! I dipped my cleaned and dried strawberries in the mixture and them dipped them in bright blue sprinkles or pearly sprinkles at the tips. Then placed them on a cookie sheet lined with wax paper and put them in the fridge overnight. That's it!
I didn't have time to make or put out the rest, I wish I had just gone ahead and made the caperese sticks beforehand but I didn't think other things would take so long. But of course we had to make our classic Sparkling Amaretto Sours!
We make these by the bottle, our recipe is a little different:
1 bottle Prosecco or Asti (we use Martini & Rossi)
4 tablespoons of simple syrup (made beforehand, lasts forever!)
1/2 cup of Amaretto (we used Disaronno)
2 squeezed lemons
And of course you have to make the sugar rims before but are sooo good! Just a colorful mix of lemon and lime zest and sugar. So easy and delicious!
What are your go-to's for dinner parties? Would you try any of these recipes? Did you come to my party and like or dislike any of these things? Let me know! I love feedback and new ideas!


1 comment:

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