Monday, December 29, 2008
For many of us, parties can lose their luster once diagnosed with Celiac disease. Since most parties center around food and drink, many gluten-intolerant find it difficult to partake in celebrations where they can’t eat the food and prefer not to drink on an empty stomach. Instead of feeling left out, try hosting your own New Year’s Eve Party! In this article we will focus on everything you need to host a fabulous holiday party, entirely gluten-free that all your guests, gluten-intolerant or not, will rave about! As with any successful endeavor, it all begins with a plan.
Plan your party
Decide on your guest list. How many guests will you invite? How many are men, how many women? It is important to be aware of the number of men and women guests because generally, men will consume more food and beverages than women.
Decide on a theme. Themes not only add an element of fun and uniqueness to your party, but will dictate recipes, decorations and even suggested attire for your guests.
There are a limitless number of theme ideas, among them, ethnic themes, such as Italian, French or Japanese can be great fun for both you and your guests.
Last year we hosted a New Year’s Eve Sushi Party. I had prepped many different sushi ingredients, prepared huge bowls of sushi rice and set up sushi rolling stations all over the kitchen. After a short rolling demonstration, all my guests energetically created their own sushi masterpieces. When all the sushi was made, we filled an entire dining room table with platters of fabulous sushi. I decorated the table and room in Japanese style and served a miso soup, green tea and plenty of sake. The party was great fun because everyone was involved and interacted together. Even guests who differed in age and background and who didn’t previously know each other were laughing and competing on who’s sushi was the most creative and interesting looking. It was great fun. And, there was no cooking involved!
You can also host a black tie party, dessert party, hors de oeuvre party or anything else you can conceive of.
Once you have your guest list and an idea of what kind of party you would like to have, you’re ready to plan the menu.
How much food is enough?
The answer to this question is relative to a few variables. Are your guests big or small eaters, or a combination of both?
Will you be serving hors de oeuvres only, or will you be serving a meal?
For an hors de oeurve party, the rule of thumb is 2-3 pieces of each appetizer for each guest. If you plan to serve only appetizers, make at least six different types. Think through a balanced menu of fish or shell fish, meat, vegetables, breads, dips and don’t forget the desserts! A good balance of foods will ensure that there will be something for everyone regardless of food intolerances or preferences.
Once your menu is complete, plan your decorations. Decorations help put everyone in a party mood. Decorating can be elaborate or as simple as decorative serving dishes.
If your party will include a buffet, make your table decorations as inviting as possible. One of our favorite ways to decorate a buffet table for the holidays is to first start with many different sized card board boxes, the largest about 2’ tall. Cover your table with a tablecloth. Place the boxes, (lids removed) upside down on your table so that they are touching each other down the center of the table. Place small boxes on top of large ones. The smallest box should be large enough to hold a serving plate. Place a string of small white Christmas lights around the bottom of the group of boxes. Select a large piece of shear or semi-shear material that enhances your theme and drape it over the boxes and the lights. Bunch up the material and tuck in the raw edges. Plug in the lights and you have a table of beautiful pedestals to present your food on.
No matter what type of party you would like to host, we have hundreds of delicious gluten-free recipes to suit any party. Just search our archives by category, recipe name or main ingredients.
To get you started, here is a collection of fabulous gluten-free hors de oeuvres everyone will love!
Mini Crab Quiches
Pesto & Sun-dried Tomato Torta
Marinated Shrimp Wrapped in Bacon
Smoked Salmon & Cream Cheese on Polenta Triangles
Smoked Salmon Cheesecake
Chicken Liver Pate with Cranberries & Pecans
Spinach & Artichoke Dip
Bruschetta with Smoked Salmon & Herbs
Mini Beef Filets with Horseradish Crème Fraiche
Baby Red Potatoes Stuffed with Garlic & Herbs
Baked Crab Dip
Fried Mushroom and Leek Spring Rolls
Green Apples with Crème Fraiche and Smoked Trout
Melon Wrapped in Prociutto
Parmesan Crisps with Pecans & Basil
Spicy Chicken Skewers
Happy Holidays from Glutenfreeda.com!
at 9:41 AM