New Year’s Eve 2009

Wow, 2010 is finally upon us! I’m excited for what this year will bring. I think we definitely celebrated the end of 2009 in style, though. Adam and I hosted a little get together for about 20 friends and I think everyone had a great time. I know I did! πŸ˜€

Despite a late-ish get together, I couldn’t help myself with a few appetizers and desserts πŸ˜‰

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An antipasti plate with grapes, aged gouda, smoked gouda, four pepper goat cheese, salami and mixed olives

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Tzatziki which I made by following this recipe from Cooking Light. I substituted 2% greek yogurt for nonfat plain and used dried dill and no mint. The result was so fresh and delicious. I think this was the best thing I made for the party! :)

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Fresh cauliflower, baby carrots and cucumber slices for dipping…

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My mom helped out with some cooking as well, and made these little cheese puffs. They have cheddar baked right into the dough, and are stuffed with russian cottage cheese, A LOT of garlic and fresh dill. This is a recipe my mom got from a German magazine when we were kids so although it’s not Russian, it really reminds me of my childhood. Everyone loved these guys of course! πŸ˜€

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Bacon potato chips I got from Foodzie for Adam’s Christmas stocking. The reviews on these were mixed. They are definitely on the weird side – lots of smoky flavor for sure!

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Crab dip based on this recipe from Cooking Light. I halved it (because crab is expensive!), used claw meat (see previous reason), used 4% cottage cheese (I wasn’t sure how the fat-free would melt) and omitted the scallions. I tasted the batter before baking it and thought it was amazing. Post baking it was a little fishy, although one of our friends was converted into a crab lover during the party (the first bite was just okay to him, but he kept going back!) which I guess is the best review that could be given to this dip. It was also gone by the end of the night – another good sign. :)

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I tried it with some cauliflower…

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Trader Joe’s ham & cheese puff pastry bites

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No prep required, just pop in the oven and bake. Perfect for a random get together or when you want to keep the cooking to the minimum! This was actually my strategy for the party – I made a few dips, but then relied on some store bought extras (cheeses, meats, chips, veggies, etc.). It worked out great – I was hardly in the kitchen to pull this off! :mrgreen:

DESSERTS!

Desserts I made a few days before the party, to make sure I don’t run out of time. That would be criminal πŸ˜‰

I started with Ellie Krieger’s no bake lemon cheesecake bars

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They set a little better over the next 24 hours (after the last post), but I still served them in little muffin liners with spoons. This was definitely less messy! Overall I really liked the taste of them, but the texture just complicated things too much. I wouldn’t make them again unless I figured out how I can get them to perfectly set next time.

Next, my mom surprised me with a cake for the party. This one is called “holiday” in Russian, which was quite appropriate. The base is an almond meal crust (I think), topped with custard and chocolate ganache.

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I was in heaven after the first bite. Here it is cut into party size bites. Mmm… thanks mom!!!!! My mom’s goods were my favorite from the whole spread!

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Lastly, the peppermint bark cookies made an appearance as well. Of course! 😎

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Some alcohol was also involved πŸ˜‰ We had some wine and glasses set up…

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And a make your-own mixed drink set up. It worked out really well. People were making all sorts of fun concoctions! πŸ˜€

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+ a lot of beer! We have so much left now because everyone brought way more than they could drink. Not the worst thing in the world πŸ˜‰

I had a few glasses of red...

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Then Pran showed up with sangria and I couldn’t resist… drank a few glasses of that. I love sangria!

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A little posing action πŸ˜†

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Somebody wasn’t too amused. Hehe (actually he smiled right after the camera clicked – tough guy!)

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So much fun! How did you celebrate New Year’s Eve?

I spent the majority of my first day of 2010 on the couch, watching reruns of the Next Iron Chef. Good times. I’m off to the gym now. I’ll be back this weekend with my New Years Resolutions for 2010 (want to digest them for a few days). Did you make resolutions yet? Have a fabulous weekend and a happy 2010!!!!!!! πŸ˜€

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