Christmas is over, but New Year’s Eve is still ahead. We connected with local mom Perienne Sadler of Cove Fine Foods, to create a menu for a fabulous party. In our last article, we shared three recipes with you. Now we’re pulling it all together, and sharing Perienne’s tips for a glamourous New Year’s Eve celebration. It’s time for mom to let loose a little, as we ring in 2012!
I love a good holiday party, and by New Year’s Eve, I’m always ready to leave the turkey and hot buttered rum behind. Life as a mom is busier than I had expected – but it has given me a new reason to continue to fill my home with friends, family, and good food. The joy my daughter brings everyone in my life is reason enough to put together a great New Year’s Eve party, and then once she goes to bed, Mom gets to let her hair down just a little!
There are a few key ingredients to set the stage for an amazing New Year’s party, so follow these suggestions, and you are only steps away from an effortless, easy, fabulous party to ring in 2012!
Throwing a Glamourous New Year’s Eve Party
- Have a cocktail ready for your guests as they arrive. Something fun for the kids is nice too!
- Lay out platters for all night grazing.
- Dinner should be simple and easy.
- Always have a surprise up your sleeve for the countdown.
- Send everyone off with something memorable – it keeps your party going.
1. Have Cocktails Ready
I love to serve drinks in mason jars because it’s just so sweet and unexpected. This year my cocktail of choice is Pimms and Ginger because it is so nice and refreshing. I love it over the winter as a nice break from all the red wine at parties.
2. Lay out Platters
A great antipasto or cheese platter goes a long way without having to cook anything. Bosa Foods carries everything for a one stop cheese platter shop. Talleggio and buffalo ricotta are showstoppers and add something unexpected to the mix. Be sure to check out the aisle with preserves, and pick out some olives there also – I prefer pitted olives for parties, as it eliminates having to spit out a pit. The only rule for cheese platters is to have them heaping with goodies. It’s more inviting than a sparse one – so use a smaller platter if necessary. Pick up some crostini’s, some fig preserves, and arrange everything with some roasted nuts, grilled veggies, roasted garlic, grapes, and whatever you like. As soon as your guests have their drinks in hand, they will wander over to the cheese platter and start picking away!
3. Simple and Easy Dinner
For dinner this year I’m feeling quite rustic. Nothing is simpler than a glazed bone-in natural ham served with potato rolls, an assortment of mustards, and pickled vegetables. I’m going to bring it out for dinner and leave it out all night. Each party-goer can slice their ham and pile it in a potato roll with whatever toppings their heart desires! Use a simple glaze on the ham, pop it in the oven and pull it out an hour or so later. Serve it on a big cutting board with a nice sharp knife and all the accompanying sides. Everyone will go back for seconds and thirds as the night progresses and the drinks keep flowing. For the fancy mustards and pickled veggies, make the trip to Gourmet Warehouse. It’s one of my favourite stores in the city. As for the potato rolls, any nearby bakery should have them!
The champagne toast is the best part of New Year’s Eve. I think Liberty Wine is the only place to go. It doesn’t hurt that they offer a case discount, but they can always recommend a wine or sparkling in your price range. My go-to choice is Blue Mountain Winery’s Brut. Each bottle of champagne has enough for six flutes of sparkling, so plan accordingly. If your budget can take it, a refill after the first toast is always a nice touch. There is a superstition that after the stroke of midnight, 12 lucky grapes should be eaten to represent the 12 coming months. They look darling in your champagne flutes on a skewer or a rosemary sprig if you are daring enough. They say the sweet grapes represent a sweet month in the coming year, and the sour ones supposedly predict a less than perfect one. It’s a fun way to bring everyone together and a lovely tradition to bring in the New Year!
Immediately after the toast, bring out something to satisfy the sweet tooth – chocolate dipped strawberries served on vintage silver trays are my favourite. They really lend a glamorous feel, and are such a wonderfully decadent but easy item to prepare! Kids always feel so grown up and special when they are included, so for the big kids, serve them a champagne flute with sparkling juice for the toast and a chocolate dipped strawberry also!
5. Send Something Home
Send your guests home with little treats to remind them of the great time they had the night before! This is a great chance to get your kids involved, to craft or create something special. Remember to treasure the moments where everyone is laughing and sharing, the kids are running around, and you’re all enjoying time together. Memories last a lifetime, and a beautiful New Year’s Eve party is the perfect setting to build them.
Perienne Sadler is the owner, chef, and operator of Cove Fine Foods, a high end casual gourmet café, bakery, and catering company in Deep Cove, North Vancouver. She has a one year old little girl. She lives a life filled with beautiful food, family, friends, and experiences while being a mom – which always comes first and foremost. You can also find her at Cove Fine Foods on Facebook.
Amber Strocel is a writer, aspiring math teacher, suburbanite, wife and mom of two. She believes in the power of the Internet to connect people, and she believes that numbers are the poetry of the universe. You can often find her knitting, sewing, volunteering, working in her garden, and sneaking chocolate when no one's looking. She blogs at Strocel.com and shares her photos on Instagram as @AmberStrocel.