Party poppers: Eats for New Year’s Eve
- 2 cups white cranberry juice
- 4 cups ginger ale
- 4 cups prosecco
Chill all the beverages well before mixing the punch. Pour the white cranberry juice into a large punch bowl. Add the ginger ale and prosecco and serve immediately in Champagne flutes. No need to stir — that will just make the bubbles disappear faster. For an extra splurge and a little more “kick,” add a splash of Grand Marnier to each glass before pouring in the punch.
- 6 slices white bread, crusts removed
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- Salt and pepper
- 1/4 cup whipped cream cheese
- 1 tablespoon prepared horseradish
- Juice of 1/2 a lemon
- 1 teaspoon fresh chives, finely chopped
- 3 ounces smoked salmon, thinly sliced
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil or parchment. Brush each piece of bread with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Toast bread until just lightly golden on both sides, then remove from oven and let cool slightly. While toasts are cooling, combine cream cheese, horseradish, lemon juice and chives in a bowl and mix well. Spread cream-cheese mixture on each piece of toast. Top half the toasts with a small slice of smoked salmon. Use the other toasts to finish the sandwich. Cut the sandwiches into quarters and serve at room temperature.
- 4 ounces semisweet or dark chocolate chips
- 2 pints vanilla or coffee ice cream
- 1/4 cup liqueur (Amaretto is my favorite, but use what you have: Grand Marnier, brandy, dessert wine)
Line a baking sheet that will fit in your freezer with parchment or wax paper. Place the chocolate chips in a microwave-safe container and microwave on medium for 20 seconds. Stir and return to microwave for another 10 seconds. Chocolate burns easily so check and stir every 10 seconds until fully melted. Pour the melted chocolate into a squeeze bottle. Squeeze the chocolate over the parchment paper, making abstract shapes. Leave a bit of space between each shape, for easy removal. Place the tray in the freezer for about 2 hours. Once the chocolate is set, use a spatula to remove it from the parchment. Chocolate abstracts may be stored for several days in the freezer between sheets of parchment paper. When you are ready to serve dessert, scoop the ice cream into a bowl. Top with one of the chocolate decorations and serve immediately, splashing amaretto (or your chosen liqueur) over the ice cream at the table.