Open House menu

Posted by Anita on 10.23.05 5:59 PM

From our housewarming open house — alas, no photos, as we were busy entertaining.

  • antipasto platter: marinated peppers, artichoke hearts, bocconcini, cured meats, olives
  • sesame crackers with fromage d’affinois and blood-orange marmalade
  • manchego-stuffed dates wrapped in bacon
  • Vietnamese summer rolls
  • Mini ‘BLTs’: pain de mie, avocado, bacon, tomato-bourbon jam
  • Coronation chicken-salad tea sandwiches with whipped cream cheese on walnut bread (open-face)
  • tomato/fontina/roasted garlic tartlets
  • camembert with walnut-pear filling and basalmic syrup
  • phyllo triangles: mushroom and feta, and rosemary ham with halloumi cheese
  • red curry chicken wings
  • croustade cups filled with honey-cirtus ricotta and a raspberry
  • French-style apple tart




Comment by Sally

Hi, Anita. I found your Open House menu in my otherwise fruitless search for ideas for a Christmas Open House menu. I’m working with a caterer (or trying to), but was pretty disappointe in what he sent me — scallops in bacon, cheese tray, etc. I’m wondering what adaptations to this menu you might suggest for a winter’s night party. I’m expecting about 85 or so people. And we’re not bona fide food dorks, but just looking for something festive. Would you mind sharing a few suggestions? Thanks in advance. Sally in Massachusetts

Posted on 12.03.06 at 4:52PM

Comment by Anita

Hi Sally!

Let’s start with the things that would work from my old menu, for a winter get-together:
- Antipasto platter
- Bacon-wrapped stuffed dates FOR SURE!
- Mini-tarts (though I’d fill them with pumpkin pie filling or pecan pie filling — perhaps some of each? — instead of apple)

Then I’d add:
- Cheese straws, or maybe even some savory palmiers like these
- Bowls of spiced nuts (my favorite recipe is from Cook’s Illustrated… if you have a membership to their site, it’s easy to find)
- Open-faced mini-sandwiches on baguette slices (something wintery like roast pork and onion relish)
- “breakfast” radishes (or other pretty varieties) served on a platter with a dish of salt and a crock of softened butter
- baby-back ribs with an asian or sweet-spicy glaze
- soup shooters in shot glasses or demi-tasse (if warm). I’d pick something that tastes good even if it’s not piping hot, like roasted red pepper or an Indian-spiced lentil puree drizzled with creme fraiche
Keep in mind you don’t want a lot of things that need to be refrigerated, or too much that needs to be baked (unless the caterer is taking care of that). Even if you decide to ditch the caterer, I’d hire some help to finish the food during the party, and pass platters

Posted on 12.04.06 at 7:03AM

Comment by Sally

Wow, Anita. Thanks so much for getting back to me. Isn’t the internet wild? These are terrific suggestions, and my caterer’s response to them will let me know if, in fact, I do need a new one! Happy culinary trails to you and yours….S.

Posted on 12.04.06 at 1:46PM

Pingback by Married …with dinner » Blog Archive » Low-key jam session

[...] Tomato jam may seem like an odd beast, but it’s really not too far removed from ketchup. My favorite use for this spicy-savory preserve is spread liberally onto good Acme white bread, topped with Fatted Calf bacon and a a sliver of Will’s avocado — a sort of post-summer BLT substitute. (We served tea-sized versions of these exact sandwiches at our housewarming party, and they disappeared faster than I could assemble them.) The jam also makes a glorious glaze for meatloaf, a dipping sauce for empanadas… really, the possibilities seem endless. [...]

Posted on 09.28.07 at 12:05AM

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