Last night was our long awaited house warming party. While I love hostessing and was excited to show off the new place, I didn’t want to spend the entire day in the kitchen. I compiled my easiest and most crowd-pleasing recipes and it all went off without a hitch. Here is my ultimate guide for hors d’oeuvres that are easier to make than spelling hors d’oeuvres.
The temptation for many people is to grab pre-made fruit and vegetable platters in the grocery store, but to me they never look as good as doing it yourself and can end up costing more. With some celery, carrots, cherry tomatoes, hummus, and pita chips I created a plentiful and attractive veggie plate.
These may not be the most photogenic item of our buffet, but they have been my go-to southern finger food for any and every event I’ve ever hosted. Cheese and sausage ball recipes are abundant online, but my recipe of choice comes from one of my mom’s old cookbooks and it is much simpler than any other recipe I’ve seen. With your hands, mix together one pound of hot sausage (I choose Jimmy Dean), one heaping cup of grated sharp cheddar, and two cups of Bisquick. Once combined, pinch into 1” balls on a baking sheet and bake at 350° for 20 minutes.
Even though I love chocolate, I wanted to serve a sweet alternative for those weirdos I know that don’t like chocolate. I started with butter yellow cupcakes (from a box) but added a spoonful of peanut butter to the mix and then made peanut butter frosting from scratch. In my opinion if you can only choose one part of the cupcake to be homemade, frosting is the way to go.
The cheesy bread was hands down the hit of the party and easier to make than chopping veggies. Lay Pillsbury Crescents flat on a baking sheet and wrap around a block of Monterey jack cheese. Follow the baking directions on the crescent package and you’re done! Chocolate covered fruit may look elegant, but if you can cut open a bag of chocolate chips, you can make it. I’ve written my recipe below, but there’s a similar one here that doesn’t even involve the stove.
Chocolate-Dipped Fruit: Combine two cups of Nestlé Toll House milk chocolate morsels with ¼ cup vegetable shortening over hot but not boiling water (in a double boiler). Stir until smooth, remove from heat and dip pieces of fruit into mixture, shake off excess, and place on foil-lined cookie sheet. Chill until set.
I hope that these recipes show you that hostessing can be delicious and look impressive, but still be easy. Stay tuned for photos of the new apartment!