I’m busy covering the World Junior Hockey Championships this week for Hockeytalk, so I’ve asked a few of my friends to help me out.
Today I’d like to introduce you all to my friend Terri, A.K.A. A Girl in the South. Terri is an amazing cook and if you check out her blog you will find lots of great recipes and cooking tips. I asked her to throw you guys some tips and recipes for a great New Years Eve.
Anybody know what Auld Lang Syne means? I mean, really? Do you know? I don’t. And frankly, I’m cool with that. All I need to know about ringing in the New Year is that there should be good food, good booze and a good smooch at midnight. Right? Yep, I knew you’d see things my way!
Whether you’re headed out to a party or staying in for NYE you should have a few good nibbles on hand, and a few ideas for cocktails. Here I am to give you both. You’ve got to get your smoochin’ partner all on your own!
I’ve thrown more than my fair share of parties over the years and when it comes to appetizers, I’ve learned this- Keep It Simple. It’s true that the familiar and comfortable foods are the ones that fly off the table and are raved about over and over. Below are a few apps that will be familiar, but with a little something special just for ringing in 2011.
In Texas we eat a LOT of jalapenos, so stuffed jalapenos are almost always on my menu. This year, you should stuff ‘em my way…with cream cheese, cheddar, wrapped in bacon and dripping with sauce. if you’re really brave use a spicy barbecue sauce! You like spicy, right?
Barbecue Stuffed Jalapeno Peppers
15 jalapeno peppers, halved lengthwise
1 oz block cream cheese
½ cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1 green onion sliced
8 slices bacon halved
barbecue sauce of your choosing
Halve the jalapeno peppers and remove seeds and veins. Combine the cream cheese, sharp cheddar and the green onions. You can do it by hand, but a mixer is faster! Fill each pepper half with the cheese mixture then wrap half a slice of bacon around it, securing with a toothpick. Line up all the stuffed and wrapped peppers on a baking sheet and brush with your favorite barbecue sauce. Bake at 350 degrees until the bacon is cooked through – up to 1 hour.
Pico de Gallo gets amped up with a little cocktail sauce and some boiled diced shrimp. Add some avocado and it’s perfect!
No real recipe for this one…boil some shrimp and peel them and dice them into bite sized pieces. Then make some pico de gallo – equal parts diced tomato and onion, then chop cilantro and jalapeno to your taste.
Boys, brace yourselves….there’s a dip with your name on it. Buffalo Chicken Dip. Yep…turn the wing into a dip and it’s a lot less messy and just as tasty.
I found this recipe years ago via a Cooking Light Bulletin Board and haven’t tinkered with it or changed it in all these years…it’s that good.
Layer the sauced chicken (as opposed to the other sauced people you have hanging around on NY Eve!) then top it with the cream cheese/ranch mixture and toss it all in the oven. Pull it out after about 15 minutes to top with shredded cheese and chopped celery if you’d like, then let it bake for another 10 minutes.
The end result is heaven on a tortilla chip, a cracker or sliced French bread!
Buffalo Chicken Dip
8 oz. pkg. cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup ranch salad dressing
1/2 cup any flavor FRANK’S® REDHOT® Sauce
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
20 oz chopped cooked chicken (breast meat is great for this)
Preheat oven to 350°F. Place cream cheese into deep baking dish. Stir until smooth mix in salad dressing, Frank’s RedHot Sauce and cheese. Stir in chicken. Bake 20 min. or until mixture is heated through; stir. Garnish as desired. Serve with crackers or vegetables.
Now you’ve got a few snacks…what about the soooo important cocktails??? Oh me oh my…there are just so many options.
Well, if you’re hanging with me, just pop open a bottle of Moet & Chandon or Riondo Prosecco and I’m good to go, but if you’re with a more discerning crowd you may want a bubbly cocktail.
Corpse Reviver No. 2
1/2 ounce freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 1/2 ounces absinth, Pernod, or other pastis, chilled
2 ounces Champagne brut or sparkling wine brut, chilled
2 real maraschino cherries for garnish (optional)
2 sprigs fresh thyme for garnish (optional)
In a shaker, combine the lemon juice, absinthe and Champagne and shake virgorously with ice. Strain into 2 chilled 2-ounce cordial glasses. If you like, place a maraschino cherry and thyme sprig in each glass to awaken and round the anise-heavy tipple. Drink it while it’s cold.
Or Perhaps a Queen’s Cousin?
1 ounce vodka
1/2 ounce Grand Marnier
1/2 ounce of fresh lime juice
1 tsp Triple Sec
3 oz well-chilled champagne
2 dashes Angostura bitters
Mix the first 4 ingredients then gently add 3 ounces of well-chilled champagne or sparkling wine. Top with 2 dashes Angostura bitters.
So, now you’re armed and ready with some munchies, some cocktail recipes and … oh, wait! You don’t have as smoochin’ partner? Oh well…smooch a friend…start 2011 with people you actually LIKE!