Healthy and Sane

New Year’s Eve 2009

January 2nd, 2010 · 15 Comments · Cooking Light, entertaining, party

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˜‰


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



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! :)


Fresh cauliflower, baby carrots and cucumber slices for dipping…


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˜€



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!


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. :)


I tried it with some cauliflower…


Trader Joe’s ham & cheese puff pastry bites


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 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


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.


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!


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


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


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


+ 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!



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!)


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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15 Comments so far ↓

  • #1 - Shannon

    looks like a fabulous evening! happy new year :)

    mine was much less eventful… let’s just leave it at that! at least i got to play with my friend’s puppy :)

  • #2 - katie

    wow those desserts look fab!! great partay!

  • #3 - Carly

    What a great night :)

    I LOVE LOVE LOVE your dress! Where from?

    I spent my new years at home with my dog. My husband was closing at his restaurant. I almost went up there, but it is 45 min away and it was snowing. Luckily he made it home by about 11:15 so I had him when the new year rang in!

  • #4 - MelissaNibbles

    No better way to ring in the New Year than with good food and good friends. Happy New Year!

  • #5 - Lauren

    What a terrific party spread… and you look gorgeous!

    John and I celebrated with another couple at our place – nice and quiet.

    Happy New Year, Elina!

  • #6 - sister inna

    I WANT CHEESY PUFFS no fair :(

  • #7 - Elina

    Carly – it’s a really simple summer dress that I got at JCrew on sale a few years back + a belt (not sure what the brand is) from Saks Fifth Ave. Glad you liked my outfit πŸ˜€

    Innz – maybe mom will hook you up if you ask nicely πŸ˜†

  • #8 - Jena

    NYE party looks great!!

  • #9 - One Healthy Apple

    Love the dress and belt- it looks great!

    Russian moms are the best! My mom hooks it up and there is something fabulous about that old world food!

  • #10 - angieinatlanta

    Yum! What a fun get together!

    I especially like the look of your mom’s cake. It sounds to die for!

    Thank you again for your Post 390 recommendation a few weeks back. We went and LOVED it!

  • #11 - chrysta

    Looks like so much fun! That cake and sangria look amazing! Way to go on all the dips too. Everything looks fantastic!

  • #12 - 2010 resolutions

    […] New Year’s Eve 2009 […]

  • #13 - Elina

    One Healthy Apple – yeah, I think it’s in their blood, they can’t help but go overboard every time. I’m not complaining πŸ˜‰

    Angie – yay, so glad you loved it! I hope your trip to Boston was fun!!!

  • #14 - Liz

    Your parties always look so yummy! How can I score an invite? lol Hope your 2010 is going well so far!

  • #15 - Garlicky tvorog with walnuts and herbs « Russian Bites

    […] similar and filled profiterole-type pastries with this spread (I actually served those guys at my last New Year’s Eve party, if you’re looking for a visual ). This spread is creamy and well, garlicky (ha!) and it could be […]