New Year’s Eve Traditions

by Robin on December 31, 2011

in Uncategorized

Once upon a time, New Year’s Eve meant partying until the wee hours, but in recent years, it’s a miracle if I can stay awake past 11pm.  One thing that hasn’t changed is the kind of food and drink I serve on the last night of the year: hors d’oeuvres and champagne.

Whether you’re serving a crowd, or just one or two of you, hors d’oeuvres are a fun way to ring out the old year.  Nibbling on tasty bites is a great way to make the night feel more festive, and if you are staying up late, it’s better to nibble on a few small bites than to eat a heavy meal.  

I adore champagne and what better night than New Year’s Eve to break out the bubbly.  You can find a list of vegan champagnes on Barnivore.com.  Other kinds of bubbly such as prosecco and spumante are good choices as well.  For a great non-alcoholic drink, combine seltzer with some white grape juice — or a little cranberry juice for a festive blush.

As for how many kinds of hors d’oeuvres to prepare, a selection of at least 3 to 5 different varieties keeps things interesting.  I like to choose some kind of theme in terms of flavor so that everything is different but complementary. Having developed hundreds of appetizers and hors d’oeuvres over the years (80 of them in 1000 Vegan Recipes alone), it’s sometimes hard to decide what NOT to make! This year I’m leaning towards Mediterranean flavors.  From Quick-Fix Vegan, I’m considering the Bruschetta with Sicilian Greens;Two-Tomato Pastry Purses; Provencal Stuffed Mushrooms; and Easy Artichoke Puffs.

Although, I’m still considering making some things from two of my all-time favorite “small bites” menus from Party Vegan, specifically the pastry-wrapped cherry peppers (photo above) from this New Year’s Eve menu:

New Year’s Eve Noshes and Nibbles
Spinach Phyllo Cigars with Walnuts and Figs
Artichoke-Stuffed Mushrooms
Polenta Crostini with Eggplant Tapenade
Truffled White Bean Hummus
Pastry-Wrapped Stuffed Cherry Peppers
Go-withs: nuts, chips, crackers, breads, olives, champagne; punch

and I’m also tempted to make the Ajillo Mushrooms from this Party Vegan tapas menu as well:

Totally Tapas
Patatas Bravas
Orange and Red Onion Salad
Ajillo Mushrooms
Garlic Chickpeas with Spinach
Olive and Caper-Stuffed Cherry Tomatoes
Go withs: sherry, beer, toasted bread, roasted almonds, olives, marinated artichoke hearts

Whatever I decide to prepare, I know it will be enjoyed with gratitude as I reflect on the past year and look forward wth anticipation to the next.  And I hope you do the same.  Have a safe and happy New Year’s Eve!

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