It’s 11:59pm, December 31st, 2004, you’re gathered around with your friends watching the ball drop in Times Square listening to Dick Clark count down — 10….9…8….7…. You reflect on the past year — in particular, the last 5 hours of your cocktail party. Did the appetizers come out right? Was there enough food for everyone? Could people tell that the food was gluten-free? Did they care? Were they just trying to be nice?
Now let’s rewind the clock to early December — plenty of time to plan your cocktail party menu, especially with a little help from the chef’s at Glutenfreeda.com. This year we have a countdown of our own with some great tips for your New Year’s Eve party.
10…Focus on appetizers that are naturally gluten-free. Your hors d’oeuvres won’t taste funny (or gluten-free) because they are what they are supposed to be — naturally authentic. This will also help you out because you won’t have to hunt for special gluten-free items — you can actually shop at the grocery store! What a concept!!!
9…If hors d’oeuvres are the only food offered at your party there should be at least 6 different appetizers — figuring 2-3 pieces per person per appetizer.
8…To calculate for hors d’oeuvres not in pieces (like dips or pâtés) assume 1 ounce is equal to 1 piece.
7…Create a balance between hot and cold dishes.
6…If you are planning on having 20-25 guests or more for hors d’oeuvres you should include some ‘bulk’ type items in your menu. Otherwise you will find yourself making hundreds of little things.
5…For an hors d’oeuvre party where you are not planning on serving a ‘meal’, plan on serving some more substantial items with small plates and forks.
4…Be creative with your serving dishes. Plan some hors d’oeuvres to be served in fun cocktail glasses for a festive touch.
3…Plan desserts that can be served in bite-size portions and that can be prepared a day or so in advance.
2…Stock up on liquors and wine. Unless you plan on hiring a professional bartender, sometimes it is easier and more fun to serve just one type of cocktail, made up in batches. Or display just the four basic liquors — Scotch, Bourbon, Gin & Vodka along with an assortment of appropriate mixers, a bucket of ice and glasses of various sizes.
1…Once the party has started, sit back, relax and enjoy! Don’t fret about the little things. Most likely you will be the only one who will notice if forgot the garnish on the shrimp!
Here is a great New Year’s Party menu that combines both appetizers and a couple substantial soups for your guests to enjoy!
New Year's Party menu:
Happy New Year’s from Glutenfreeda!