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CHEAP housewarming party nibbles...

My husband and I have moved into a new flat. We are having a combined housewarming and belated 30th bday party for me. We are pretty poor but we want to serve impressive and delicious nibbles. We've told people to come from 8pm. I've been thinking of the following:

-Gougeres (I love these)
-Summer rolls (my husband and I make them pretty often, so the only problem is making them just before people come)
-korean pancakes: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...
- hummus with veg
- We can get very good and cheap Turkish bread, olives and feta in our neighborhood.
- I have some nice spanish ham in the fridge I've been saving for this.
- Potato chips (the one thing the UK really excels at

)

Any more ideas?

We are inviting about 40 people, but hopefully they won't all show up... there isn't enough room!

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  1. I had to chuckle at your last sentence. We had a holiday "open house" many years ago in San Francisco. We thought people understood that the term means drop in, have a little food drink, visit and LEAVE. Oh no. Everybody showed up at the beginning and stayed the entire time. Our little house was a mob scene.

    I think your menu sounds terrific. Since it's after dinner, that should be plenty of food. If you wanted a little more, you could always cook some kind of roast (pork, ham, beef) slice it up and put it with some small slices of bread. But it sounds great as is and quite special. Happy birthday.

    1. If you like roquefort cheese: buy some Belgian endive, which is expensive but you don't need a lot--maybe one or at most two would do. Cut the root part off the bottom, separate the leaves and put a dollop of softened roquefort on the bottom part of the leaf. The endive stays crisp for a long time, you can arrange a plate like a big flower with the leaves radiating out, and people just pick up a leaf and pop it in their mouths. Easy, not too expensive and kind of chic. I also like to get those little pickled, sweet red peppers in the deli section, fill them with softened goat cheese, and serve. Very good.

      1. Aren't you going to have a sweet for your birthday? If you can still find strawberries, chocolate dip them. Or if it's apple and pear season, wedges of either or both, on a skewer, dipped in melted caramel, let set up a bit, then dipped again in chocolate. Or just plain chocolate. The end dipped in chopped toasted nuts perhaps.

        1. Everything sounds really yummy! You don't need anything else but if you do want a few more ideas these are a few inexpensive apps I like:

          Nigella Lawson's Zucchini Fritters
          http://www.recipezaar.com/zucchini-fr...

          Gourmet Magazine's Asian Cucumber Ribbon Salad
          http://www.recipezaar.com/Gourmet-Mag...

          Tuscan Kale Chips
          http://www.recipezaar.com/tuscan-kale...

          Cooking Light's Citrus-Marinated Mushrooms
          http://www.recipezaar.com/Citrus-Mari...

          Roasted Asparagus and Red Onion Quesadillas
          http://www.recipezaar.com/Roasted-Asp...

          Mark Bittman's Korean Crisp Vegetable Pancake
          http://www.recipezaar.com/Korean-Cris...

          Won Ton Wrapped Chicken With Apricot Dipping Sauce -can be made with canned salmon
          http://www.recipezaar.com/won-ton-wra...

          And for gougères, David Lebovitz has a great recipe. I love them too!
          http://www.davidlebovitz.com/archives...

          3 Replies
          1. re: toveggiegirl

            Those kale chips sound amazing - do you have an idea of how far ahead they can be prepared?

            1. re: vcavett

              You can definitely make them ahead of time and keep in an airtight container. If they get a little soft, rewarm them the oven for a few minutes. Also, it's a really good recipe for improvisation (using various herbs & spices, some grated parmesan, sesame oil for an Asian flavour, infused oils...). Enjoy!

            2. re: toveggiegirl

              I had a (slight) obsession with those kale chips last year. My husband said I would turn green since I ate so many!

            3. Wrap slices of that Spanish ham around whole water chestnuts and pierce with a toothpick.