Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Toasting to Hosting - New Years 2009

The New Year presents the perfect opportunity to be an impressive host! The key to pulling off an event to remember is attention to detail and presentation. Even on a budget you can whip up some tasty appetizers and delicious cocktails. Click on title "Toasting to Hosting" above for appetizer recipes and holiday cocktails perfect for your fabulous soiree for friends, small set for family or an intimate celebration for two!
Always drink responsibly! Cheers to you!
Or click on "Comments" for recipes.


Spicy Wifey said...

Classic Champange Cocktail

1/2 teaspoon sugar
1 dash Angustora bitters
1/2 cup chilled champagne
Lemon peel

Stir sugar and bitters in pre-chilled Champagne glass. Add Champagne.

Twist lemon peel over and drop into glass.


Spicy Wifey said...

Pineapple Cosmopolitans

These Cosmopolitans are pretty and pink, with a hint of fresh pineapple.
2 cups (1 pound) coarsely chopped ripe pineapple
2 cups vodka
1 cup cranberry juice
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
3 cups crushed ice
Lime slices, for garnish

In a large jar, combine the pineapple and vodka. Cover and let stand at room temperature until the vodka is well flavored with pineapple, about 3 days.

Strain the vodka through a fine sieve into a pitcher. Add the cranberry and lime juices and the crushed ice and stir well. Strain into chilled martini glasses and serve garnished with lime slices.


Spicy Wifey said...

Caramel Martini

"We have a young, hip crowd and a relaxed, after-dinner loft atmosphere," says John Baydale, who, as vice president of WB Stage 16, which operates the Venetian, helped develop the cocktail. "And I have a sweet tooth. This is a drink that can stand in for dessert."

1/4 cup chilled Stolichnaya vanilla vodka
2 tablespoons chilled butterscotch schnapps
Splash of chilled iced tea
6 ice cubes
Fried sliced plantain

Shake all ingredients except plantain in cocktail shaker until shaker is frosted and very cold. Strain into one 8-ounce martini glass. Garnish by laying fried plantain across glass and serve immediately.

Recipe provided for Cooking.com by John Baydale of the Velvet Lounge, Venetian Hotel, Las Vegas.

Spicy Wifey said...

Hot Buttered Rumba

Forget that pathetic butter raft sent afloat on hot buttered rum drinks. Instead, try our creamed blend of butter, brown sugar, and sweet spices; the mixture mingles with rum and cider the way congos take to marimbas. The effect is even livelier with a side of spicy chicken wings and some hot Afro-Cuban rhythms on the hi-fi.
1 teaspoon packed brown sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons soft butter
Pinch each of ground cloves, allspice, and cinnamon
1/3 cup apple cider
1/4 cup dark rum
2 tablespoons whipped cream
Ground nutmeg for dusting
Cinnamon stick for stirring

In a small bowl, cream the brown sugar and butter together. Blend in the cloves, allspice, and cinnamon. Put the paste in the bottom of an 8-ounce mug.

In a small saucepan, heat the cider until steam rises from the surface; do not boil. Pour the hot cider into the mug and stir vigorously to dissolve the paste. Stir in the rum.

Garnish with whipped cream and a dusting of ground nutmeg. Serve with a cinnamon stick for stirring.


Spicy Wifey said...

Caviar Topped Eggs

Here's a new twist on a party standby: deviled eggs topped with caviar. The checkerboard effect is achieved by using black sevruga or pressed caviar, red salmon caviar, and the yellow roe from whitefish. The eggs are cut in half widthwise, not lengthwise to make them manageable to eat with your fingers. The smoked salmon filling adds just the right touch of opulence to this colorful hors d'oeuvre.
8 large eggs
For the Filling:
1 1/2 ounces smoked or kippered salmon, rough chopped
White part of 1 scallion, finely chopped
3 tablespoons cream cheese, at room temperature
1 tablespoon mayonnaise
Freshly ground black pepper

1 ounce sevruga caviar or pressed caviar
1 ounce salmon roe
1 ounce golden whitefish roe

Cover the eggs with cold water in a pan. Bring the water to a boil, reduce the heat, and gently simmer the eggs for exactly 11 minutes. (More than 11 minutes and you will get a green ring around the yolk.) Run the eggs under cold water and shell them immediately. (As the cold water hits the hot egg, it will create a pocket of steam under the shell, which facilitates peeling.)

Cut a 1/8-inch slice off the end of each egg, so that the halves will sit upright without wobbling. Cut each egg in half widthwise and carefully remove the yolk with a spoon. Place the egg yolks in a food processor with the smoked salmon and scallion white and puree until smooth. Add the cream cheese, mayonnaise, and pepper and puree until smooth. Pipe rosettes of salmon egg mixture into the egg white halves, using a piping bag fitted with a large star tip. If you don't have a piping bag, spoon the filling into the whites as neatly as you can.

Using a fork, place small mounds of black caviar on some of the eggs, red on some, and yellow on some. To achieve a checkerboard effect, arrange the eggs in rows, alternating colors.

Recipe created exclusively for Cooking.com by Steven Raichlen.

Spicy Wifey said...

Beef Satay w/Peanut Dipping Sauce

Yield: 12 appetizer portions
Chef George Powell's Spicy Satay for an Asian Appetizer.
1 beef tri-tip roast (2 1/2-3 pounds), cut against the grain in 1/4 inch slices

For the Marinade:
1/4 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
1/4 cup freshly grated ginger
3 cloves garlic
1/2 cup chopped cilantro
1 tablespoon salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 cup peanut oil

For the Peanut Dipping Sauce:
1 1/2 cups creamy peanut butter
3/4 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup cilantro, chopped
2 tablespoons ginger, grated
2 teaspoons garlic, minced
1 tablespoon sesame oil
3/4 cup peanut oil
1/2 cup rice wine vinegar

Thread sliced roast onto skewers.

Place all marinade ingredients, except peanut oil, in bowl of food processor. Process until smooth.

Through food chute, slowly drizzle peanut oil in a slow steady steam, while processing, until all oil is incorporated.

Place skewers of beef into marinade and refrigerate 2-4 hours.

Remove beef from marinade and discard marinade. Grill over medium-hot coals to desired doneness, turning once.

Place all ingredients in bowl of food processor. Process until smooth.

Spicy Wifey said...

Open Sesame Shrimp

Active Time: 10 Minutes
Total Time: 2 Hours 20 Minutes
Yield: Makes 24 shrimp

Showcase these shrimp with kamikazes. When serving this dish, be sure to set out a small container for the tails and place a tail in it so guests follow the example.

For the Dipping Sauce:
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/3 cup tahini
2 tablespoons mirin
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons lime juice
2 tablespoons grated peeled fresh ginger
1 tablespoon sesame oil
For the Shrimp:
24 medium (1 pound) shrimp, peeled, deveined, tails intact
2 teaspoons vegetable oil
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1 tablespoon black sesame seeds or 2 tablespoons white sesame seeds

Combine the mayonnaise, tahini, mirin, soy sauce, rice vinegar, lime juice, grated ginger, and sesame oil in a food processor and process until smooth. Refrigerate until chilled, about 2 hours.

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.

Toss the shrimp in a bowl with the oil, kosher salt, and pepper. Dip one side of each shrimp in the sesame seeds. Place on a foil-lined baking sheet, sesame seed-side up. Bake until the shrimp are opaque, 5 to 7 minutes. Serve warm with the dipping sauce.

The dipping sauce can be prepared 3 days in advance. The shrimp can be assembled up to 8 hours in advance and refrigerated.

Spicy Wifey said...

Chesse Filled Pastries

Active Time: 25 Minutes
Total Time: 25 Minutes
Yield: Makes 36 rolls

Although these popular cheese-filled pastries are commonly shaped as triangles for the popular borek, they are equally delicious in the form of plump, round cigars. They can be filled and shaped up to 2 days in advance and refrigerated, covered, in a single layer on a parchment-lined baking sheet; fry just before serving.
6 ounces feta cheese, crumbled
6 ounces cottage cheese or shredded Monterey Jack cheese
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf (Italian) parsley
2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
Salt and freshly ground pepper
9 sheets filo dough, thawed in the refrigerator if frozen
1/4 cup clarified unsalted butter, melted
Peanut or olive oil for deep-frying

In a bowl, combine the feta cheese, cottage cheese or jack cheese, eggs, parsley, dill and nutmeg. Mix well, then season to taste with salt and pepper.

Remove the filo sheets from their package and lay the stacked sheets flat on a work surface. Cut the stack into quarters, forming squares measuring about 6 inches on a side. Cover the stack with a damp towel or plastic wrap to prevent the sheets from drying out. Working with 1 square at a time, place it on the work surface, brush it lightly with butter and then spoon a narrow strip of the cheese mixture (2-3 tablespoons) along one end, leaving a 3/4-inch border on the bottom and sides. Fold in the sides, bring the bottom up over the filling and then roll up like a cigar. Seal the edge with a little water and repeat with the remaining squares and filling until all have been used.

In a deep frying pan, pour in peanut or olive oil to a depth of 2 1/2 inches and heat to 350 degrees F.

on a deep-frying thermometer (or until a tiny piece of filo dropped into the oil turns golden within moments). Working in batches, carefully slip the rolls into the hot oil and fry, turning as needed, until golden on all sides, about 5 minutes. Do not crowd the pan. Using a slotted spoon or tongs, transfer to paper towels to drain.

Arrange the rolls on a warmed platter and serve hot.

Spicy Wifey said...

Spinach Cheese Mushrooms

Yield: 28 Servings

1/2 pound torn fresh spinach
2 tablespoons water
3/4 cup reduced-fat ricotta cheese
3 tablespoons butter or stick margarine, softened
1 egg
2/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup water chestnuts, chopped
1/3 cup finely chopped pecans, divided
56 large fresh mushrooms (about 3 1/2 pounds)
Refrigerated butter-flavored spray

In a saucepan, bring spinach and water to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and cook for 3 minutes. Drain; squeeze dry and finely chop.

In a mixing bowl, beat ricotta and butter until smooth. Beat in egg. Stir in Parmesan cheese, water chestnuts, 3 tablespoons pecans and chopped spinach.

Remove stems from mushrooms (discard or save for another use). Spray inside of mushroom caps with butter-flavored spray. Place caps on a baking sheet coated with nonstick cooking spray. Stuff with spinach mixture; sprinkle with remaining pecans. Bake, uncovered, at 400 degrees F for 15-20 minutes or until lightly browned.


Spicy Wifey said...

Non-alcoholic beverages are great for entertaining also!!!!
ALWAYS -drink responsibly

Plese continue to share any exciting recipes or entertaining ideas you have!
Email your success stories and pictures to qswllc@aol.com

Mr. Harvey's Chic said...

2008 was a good year with my husband but, 2009 is going to be a great one. The birth of Spicy Wifey will bless many married women and women seeking to be married. As a happily married woman of 10 year, and 8 months, I know that it is important to surround yourself around other positive happily married woman and to inter-act with other happily married couples. Thanks for this blog.

Mrs.Brown1998 said...

I love this blog for that reason too. Being married does get a bad rap sometimes. But I LOVE being married. I do feel that at times my husband feels like he's missing out. Most of his friends are single, so he doesn't have a lot of married friends to bond with. I appreciate being able to read other wives issues and comments!
they need a a spicy husband blog, but the men wouldn't do it i know. I am new to blogging myself and am just getting into it.
Thanks Spicy Wifey too!