We had a biiig party last week! As usual with finger food for our guests.
The husband turned xxx while we were on vacation. Such an important birthday that I could not let it pass unnoticed. So as soon as we came back, we invited everybody over and had one of our food food food and good company parties ;)
Personally I think it turned out great! I hope the guests feel the same way…
We had quite a bit of vegetarian food to make our vegetarian friends happy, and to take advantage of good veggies in season since summer is quickly coming to an end. Also almost everything was gluten free, to make the celiac friends happy :) Everything with no exception was finger food!
We did something a little risky, that is, instead of preparing some well tested recipes, we browsed through our book of Tapas and our book of Grilling (the hubby got a shiny new grill for his B-day so we had to test it!) and picked new recipes, a lot of new recipes. Very little failsafe food, just in case the experiments didn’t turn out well.
I also came up with a recipe for a dip on the fly! I planned on making a dip with white beans, but I bought a huge jar of them and I only needed half of it for the dip… just like that I decided to try and make another dip. I loooved the result!
All was served with good wine.
Here is the menu, the recipes will follow soon.
Hubby’s Birthday Party 2012 – Menu:
Curried White Bean Dip
I wanted to make hummus but I am having the hardest time to find tahini. So I thought about white beans. They are creamy enough on their own to not need tahini. I looked for a recipe for dip that called for white beans and stumbled upon this one from Giada De Laurentis. I changed it slightly and the result wasn’t bad at all, the following day it tasted even better.
Rosemary White Bean Dip
I think this is the first time I just come up with something from scratch. I usually follow instructions to the milligram. I do take notes and if needed I adjust the recipe in the future. Sometimes I skip this or that and I venture into adding a pinch of this or that. But I never made something from scratch. Boy was I satisfied when I tried this dip! Soon on the blog, for now you will have to just dream of it.
Souvlaki served with Tzatziki
My fried from Greece told me that my souvlaki reminded him of home :) I asked about the tzatziki and the soon-to-be-wife, knowing that I am borderline allergic to garlic, asked “is there garlic in it?”, when I answered “no”, she said “than it’s not tzatziki!”. I have to admit that right there on the spot my feelings were slightly hurt, but it passed almost immediately thinking about when people claim some stuff they made/had eaten was Italian and it certainly was not! Like when a friend told me that the best pizza she ever had is the one that a German friend makes, he uses eggs in the dough: that is not pizza!! Here are the links to the recipe for souvlaki and tzatziki.
Soy Sauce Flavored Vegetable Skewers
I am no big fan of vegetables but these turned out delicious!! Very very easy to make. We prepared skewers with zucchini, orange bell pepper and cherry tomatoes. We sprinkled them with the soy sauce, a little salt and grilled them for about 10 minutes. Grill only until the veggies are slightly soft. It was fun to use fingers to remove the veggies from the skewers :) Yay to finger food!
Marinated Mushroom and Cheese Skewers
Tasted great! Too bad that the cheese melted and fell right through as soon as they touched the grill, of course the mushrooms needed quite a bit more time. Next time a cheese for grilling will be necessary. After the first batch we had to leave them aside, failed experiment! I grilled the leftovers in an ovenproof pan in the oven under the grill. The mushrooms cooked properly and the cheese melted on the bottom of the pan and then got a nice crunchy top. Very tasty! To make these first we marinated cheese and mushrooms in a sauce made with the juice and zest of 2 lemons, 2 tbs of olive oil, thyme and one red chili seeded and chopped.
Steak served with Spicy Chili Sauce
A very spicy sauce served with a medium-rear steak cut in bite sizes. Great for a full bodied red wine to chill the spiciness. The recipe will be on the blog soon.
Spicy Potato Wedges
Always a hit, we usually serve these with dinner, but we thought it wouldn’t hurt our finger food party and would fit well with the meat. Here is a link to the recipe for my spicy potato wedges. Everybody loved them but I knew they should have been better. The problem is that I haven’t found a potato similar to yukon gold here in Germany, both flavor and texture resented of the use of the wrong potato.
If there is one recipe I will be making again, this is it! Oh so good! Also it aids to my late love for bell peppers, being an explosion of red and green peppers :) I will most certainly post the full recipe one of these days.
Cheese from Greece
This cheese was shaped like a small cilinder. I let the husband cut it bite size, and when he walked in I had a hard time to understand what was on the plate, it really looked like asparagus! Nonetheless it was delicious! I later found out, looking on the label of the now empty package that it was meant for grilling! I should say that I sent the husband to buy some cheese for the party by himself, perhaps I should have checked ;)
Cretan Ouzo Biscuits
Crunchy salty and sweet biscout, with that great ouzo (famous liquor from Crete) taste, to die for! How can I possibly live without these biscuits now that we ate them all? I looked for them on the internet but they cost 8-9 euro for a small box! Astonishing! I am going to have to try to make them myself! Or go back to Crete!
Tortilla chips, “7 Days Bake Rolls” and Ritz
Of course you need something for the dips, right? It was good to discover that Tortilla chips are gluten free! Did I mention that chips in Germany are the most horrible thing ever? Sometimes I wonder how it is possible that in Italy everything is better: even potato chips!!
Cucumber and Carrot Sticks
Just like their bready friends these were ment for the dips. I have to admit that while I was skeptical I thoroughly enjoyed the bean dips on a thick stick of cucumber.
Grilled Marinated Pineapple
Pineapple slices marinated in a sauce of rum, brown sugar, melted butter and ground ginger. Perhaps it could have been more flavorful, marinated for a longer time, but it still tasted delicious. Plus pineapple aids digestion.
Berry Cheesecake from Mr. S.
Or should I say Sir. S. perhaps? Oh oh oh this was a hit! Thank you Sir. S., this was very much appreciated! The hubby and I are no big fans of cheesecakes… cheese and cake together does not sound appealing at all. But this one was the well known exception to the rule. I have the coordinates to the recipe, now I just need to try to make it myself, and get permission to publish it :) Cross your fingers.
Remember profiteroles? What a delight! I decided that the small balls that make it were going to be perfect for this finger food party. I was planning to arrange them to form a 30, but I miserably failed!! Even though I practiced before! Food arrangement are not my strengt, but they tasted great! This too was a hit, too bad I didn’t make more of it. I should have made it beforehand but being my fridge *very* small I couldn’t :(
How did the party go? Very well, I especially enjoyed the engagement everybody showed in shaping the ballons!
* you have the right to ask for the deletion of your pic if you deem it unflattering (but I love them all!) ;)