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Dec 2, 2013 10:40 AM

Help...need ideas for one or two bite appetizers for Christmas Party

I host a Christmas party every year for about 60 neighbors and friends. I like to provide food that can be eaten with one hand while holding a drink in the other hand so appetizers need to be small and not messy. I avoid dips and other stuff that will be all over my floors after the party. I am looking for food to make ahead (2-3 days ahead) that does not have to be cooked/warmed at the last minute. I always provide nuts, chips throughout the space so the food I'm looking for would be presented on the buffet table.

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  1. Stuffed mushrooms, can do both a vegetarian and meateaters stuffing and deviled eggs. Both dishes are always the first to go at parties I've been to.

    1. A recent favorite is to use puff pastry, cut in circles sized to fit mini-muffin tins - line them, add a few cubes of brie cheese, bake them until they're melty but not melted, and top with some type of chutney or fruit/spice relish.

      2 Replies
      1. re: mamachef

        I was going to suggest similar. I just make a rectangle tart then cut it into smaller pieces. Goat cheese and tomato, zucchini and ricotta, many combinations...

        1. re: mamachef

          Another riff on the puff pastry mini-muffins: fill with a bit of chopped pecans & pecan pie goo filling--terrific baby pie bits.

        2. Sushi - doesn't always come out best when homemade though

          Bite size pieces of bread or crackers topped with smoked salmon and creamcheese or hummus and an olive

          Grilled veggies wrapped around goat cheese, served cold

          Marinated mushrooms

          Mozzerella, cherry tomato, and basil on a toothpick

          Fruit salad on a toothpick (cantaloupe chunk, pineapple, grapes, etc)

          1. mini quiches/savory tarts-good at room temp and easy to make in advance

            shrimp cocktail-serve on a bed of ice, can be cooked the day before and chilled

            scallop ceviche-could be iffy if done too far ahead. Another option is scallops wrapped in bacon thought that is best hot/warm

            bruschetta (combos are endless)

            mini honey mustard palmiers-can be made days in advance and kept in an air tight container

            Cheese straws (same as above for storage)

            Bowls of seasoned popcorn-truffle, salt and pepper, parmesan, etc

            bite sized lasagna-I make them in mini muffin tins. Pesto ones are fine at room temp

            deviled eggs- can be made the day before

            You might want to do a search on here is as well. I am sure there a similar inquires that could give more ideas.

            5 Replies
            1. re: foodieX2

              I love cheese straws too..easy yet impressive
              Ham on tiny beaten biscuits is great at room temp or you can make regular biscuits with bits of ham in them!

              1. re: foodieX2

                Tell me more about the popcorn truffle.... I am intrigued and a popcorn lover!

                1. re: maggiecookshot

                  I pop the corn in a neutral oil and while still hot sprinkle liberally with truffle salt. Let cool and store in an airtight container. It's gets gobbled up at all my cocktail parties.

                  1. re: maggiecookshot

                    I make a version by adding a little (a very little!) bit of truffle oil to melted butter before drizzling over the popcorn. Then toss the whole thing with grated parmigiano reggiano.

                    1. re: TorontoJo

                      I don't have truffle salt but do have truffle oil. I will give it a try. THANKS!

                2. I'm a big fan of small veggie items that can be stuffed. Cucumber cups, endive leaves and cherry tomatoes are all easily prepped ahead of time. I've done cucumber cups with egg salad, and cranberry hummus mixed with chopped dried cranberries--very pretty and seasonal. Slice off the very top of cherry tomatoes (opposite the stem end), hollow them out and fill with tiny pasta mixed with chopped artichoke salad, herbed goat cheese or pesto--also pretty for the season. Endive leaves are also easy to do, and try to find the red ones. Upscale shrimp, chicken or Thai beef salad, herbed cheese, diced beets & goat cheese, all are good and easy to do.

                  Skewered items are also easy to prep and don't have to be reheated ahead of service. Caprese (buffalo mozzarella, basil, grape tomatoes), roasted veggies, name-your-flavor chicken, shrimp, or beef all work well.

                  Crostini--there are endless toppings for this. The bread can be done ahead and topped as needed. My favorite is goat cheese topped with fig jam, chopped prosciutto and chopped/candied (or toasted) walnuts.

                  1 Reply