Wednesday, November 26

Entertaining Part II: 10 Commandments of Hors d'oeuvres

Ah the Hors d'oeuvres table, my favorite place at any party. I don't know if it is the tiny servings, the variety, or the fact that no one is really watching me make a pig out of myself, but I love appetizers. Therefore this is my favorite time of year. Sure Thanksgiving and Christmas are wonderful but oh that army of little bites that comes with these holidays is the icing on the cake. In Entertaining Part I, I wrote about how to entertain more often and have succeeded in doing just that. I hope to maintain that momentum. Have you aspired to entertain more often? Below are some useful tips I have used over the years when planning a heavy hors d'oeuvres style party. I am not a chef (only a good cooker according to my daughter) and would never make that claim, these are simply some of the notes from my own experience.

10 Commandments of Hors d'oeuvres
1. Serve an odd number of hors d'oeuvres: 3,5, or 7.
2. 1-10 guests/3 types hors d'oeuvres, 11-20/5, 21-30/7, being sure to double and triple recipes if necessary.
3. Choose one of each: savory, sweet, spicy
4. Choose from a variety of hors d'oeuvres: canapes, wraps, rolls, spreads, dips, cheese flight, sushi, bruschetta, pastry, crudités, and crackers.
5. Choose one of each: hot, cold, room temp
6. Include fresh fruit and vegetables.
7. Have some vegetarian choices.
8. It must be something that can be eaten in 1-2 bites, with one's hands, and is not messy.
9. Be sure you have a way to keep hot things hot and cold things cold.
10. Be sure that many of the items can be made ahead of time.

Last 2 Weeks In BRK

Click on the links below to see the recipes.

Bratwurst Sliders
The Thanksgiving Leftovers Solution: Pepper Jelly Ham
A Delicious Holiday Appetizer: Curried Cheese Ball
Miniaturize Your Casseroles: Corn Pudding
Peanut Butter Fudge Sauce
Awards and Meme
How to Jazz Up Your Thanksgiving Mashed Potatoes
Tiny Brie Bites- You will see from one of the photos that I fixed my range hood!
Cranberry Salsa Black Bean Dip
Post Thanksgiving Football Weekend Taco Soup

Thanksgiving Leftover Turnovers

For the last three years after Thanksgiving I make hand pies or turnovers out of the Turkey Day leftovers. I keep a few sheets of puff pastry in the freezer for this purpose. I pull out all of the leftovers and everyone can pretty much pick what they want in their own pie. They bake up beautifully and are very delicious in a fancy schmancy way. My children love these as they can dip them in gravy or ranch dip. This year I mixed up some cranberry sauce with salsa and had mine that way. Very tasty indeed. To make these, defrost puff pastry, as much as you need. Cut into 4 inch squares. Fill with desired toppings; we like turkey and stuffing but I have also done ham and sweet potato. Try any combination that you like. Be sure to use a small amount of toppings, it does not take much. Fold the puff pastry over into a triangle shape and seal edges with a fork. Brush with a well beaten egg. Do not brush the pastry before sealing or it will not seal while wet. Bake at 425 for about 16 minutes or until golden brown and pastry's puffed and crispy. Serve with an assortment of dips, like gravy, cranberry salsa- one cup salsa with 1/4-1/2 cup cranberry sauce, ranch dressing, or anything you think would be tasty. I was stuffed with one but my children ate 2 each. I used Trader Joe's Puff Pastry. I have also used Pepperidge Farm's Puff Pastry with great success. And that is the BRK Thanksgiving Leftover Tradition!

Another Bake Sale

This past week in BRK, I baked 18 Pumpkin Cake Rolls, 16 for the bake sale at school and 2 for my own family, much to my children's' relief. When they see Momma bake they wonder if any of it will make it to their own bellies! 18 was a big production and from start to finish took 5 hours and 10 minutes. You will probably see more about that in a future post in Big Red Kitchen. My Bake Sale Partner, Sheila and her girls baked 30 pies for the sale. That's a lot of baking in that kitchen!

Have a safe and wonderful Thanksgiving!


Robin Sue

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