Thursday, December 31, 2015

Happy New Year's Eve Bash (❁´◡`❁)*✲゚*...

Let's get this party started right...! Instead of cooking up dinner for my family bash, we grazed all night with cold and hot appetizers in intervals like a cocktail party but laid out casual buffet-style.

I wanted to do as little as possible but still make head waves with the smorgasbord of appies. Relying mainly on prepared frozen entertaining small-bites to fry up or oven-bake (I know it's so unlike me, but this is the kind of crowd-occasion to do it and I think I owe it to myself this year-end to let my hair down and wrangle in pure fun without doing too much work). The one thing I did make from scratch-- bruschetta brought back so many party memories as it was THE starter to whip together and perfect to whet your guests appetites. Fresh, vibrant, tangy and flavourful served over toasted bread-- what's not to love? 

Easy Crowd Bruschetta
Makes 5 cups

10 firm ripe tomatoes, quartered with core and seeds removed (save for pasta sauce)
1/4 cup finely chopped red onion
1-2 garlic cloves, minced
10-12 leaves fresh basil, finely chopped
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil (your best)
3 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar (your best)-- if too acidic dissolve a little brown sugar in it
sea/kosher salt and ground black pepper to taste
French baguette, sliced on an angle and baked/toasted

Place all your fresh ingredients into a large bowl. Drizzle with EVOO and balsamic. Season with salt and pepper; toss. Taste and adjust seasoning. Serve over baguette slices.

TIP: Remove some excess liquid if serving later, as tomatoes continue to emit juice.

Can't think of an easier crowd-pleasing cold appetizer than a charcuterie board 
with cheese, sausages and pâté served with crackers assembled just before.

Deep-fried vegetarian spring rolls and shrimp tempura nests add Asian-flair! 

Beef meatballs simmered in homemade sweet onion BBQ sauce.

My sis-in-law made two quiches-- spinach and bacon, and tofu and blue cheese.
Mini franks and salt-and-black pepper calamari graced the table too...

But the main attraction, was none other than a box of five dozen Valentine Oysters from Diana's Seafood

Truly a buck a shuck, $60 (no tax) for 60!!!

Plump, creamy, juicy, slightly sweet with nice chew-- Valentine oysters are so divine!

My dear sister and brother together to celebrate every occasion ever with our families!!

Oh, here come's the bubbly.... 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1...


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