Party Time

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According to Martha Stewart, “The cocktail party is probably America’s greatest contribution to the world of entertaining.” I couldn’t agree more. Hands down, cocktail parties are my favorite way to celebrate during the holidays. I don’t need a whole sit-down affair. I am perfectly content spending my evening nibbling on an array of bite-sized hors d’oeuvres while sipping on a refreshing cocktail (or two).

To create these party bites, I drew inspiration from some classic cocktail party dishes. The curly beet and carrot chips with chive yogurt dip are a play on chips and dip, with a healthy twist. They’re baked, not fried, which concentrates their inherent sweetness, while the dip is a nod to that iconic sour cream and onion dip.

Meatballs are a cocktail party must, and these blue cheese-stuffed bison meatballs are the perfect little bite—think of them as inside out miniature cheeseburgers. For the crab salad in phyllo cups, I was influenced by another party staple: crab dip and pita chips. The phyllo cups look impressive but are dead easy to make, and the crab salad gets a modern kick with the addition of spicy Sriracha sauce.

Finally, the cocktail is a play on the French 75. Named after a French field gun, the original cocktail contains champagne, cognac (or gin, depending upon whom you ask), lemon juice and sugar. For my Italian 75, I have substituted pink Prosecco, grappa, grapefruit bitters and rosemary simple syrup. This drink positively screams “holiday.”

Sriracha Crab Salad in Mini Phyllo Cups

Blue Cheese-Stuffed Bison Meatballs

Italian 75

Crispy Curly Carrot and Beet Chips with Chive Yogurt Dip

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