Last minute lady

I went to a great holiday cocktail party!

I went to a great cocktail party this weekend and I was really impressed with how the hostess, who by the way is 7 months pregnant, handled the whole party. Here’s what I thought she did well:

The time: It was from 6-9pm so everyone was out at an early hour. I loved that because I was home and in my jammies watching the news by 10:30!

The food: She had all hors d’ouevres and dips so there was no sit down meal, but there was plenty to fill you up and I certainly did not leave hungry. She lives in an apartment so the dips and appies were scattered all over the living room where we were mingling. Here’s what she had:

Roasted Garlic Feta and Walnut Dip, which she served with pita chips

Lemon Garlic Chickpea Dip with Veggies and Chips

Bacon wrapped chicken pieces ( a Paula Deen recipe-this is AWESOME!)

Easy Cheesy Fondue

A big plate with sliced sausages, cheeses, cut up carrots and celery.

To drink:

My friend had a few bottles of red wine open and out on the countertop for people to serve themselves, but she also had a big bowl of Punch! All she put in the punch bowl was:

1 cup vodka, 2 cups pineapple-orange juice, and one cup plain seltzer. Then she had little slices of oranges floating in the bowl as well.

For dessert:

Okay, has anyone ever had Brickle? I had never heard of this and someone brought it to the party. It was sooo good and she swears it’s the easiest thing in the world to make! I had to share it with you all here.

17 Responses to “I went to a great holiday cocktail party!”

  1. Liz says:

    Brickle sounds delicious! So does the wonderful party your friend threw! You should share the Brickle recipe on this website I just found. It’s called Clever Parties. the link is
    You can share recipes and also add your own. The website also helps you plan your party from the invitations, down to the food and decorations!! I found it very useful when I planned my sons birthday party and my holiday party!

  2. Kate says:

    Help Rach! I just found out that I need to make some sort of Mexican entree for my 5th grader’s class on Thursday. (They are doing Christmas around the world.) When the teacher’s assistant called and said Mexican, I said “Don’t you mean German?!” I come from a strong German heritage and know nothing of Mexican dishes. So, I need to find something that kids will eat, will hold up for transport, and is Mexican. Any ideas would be greatly appreciated!

  3. Laura Waugh says:

    For Kate.
    Enchilada Casserole. You can make either a Green or Red.

    Both Require one casserole pan
    Shredded Cheddar Cheese (amount depends on You)
    1 30 count package or corn tortllas
    For Green:
    2 cans cream of chicken or mushroom soup use half of required water or milk whichever
    3 small cans of green chilis (choose your heat)
    mix soup and green chilis together

    For red:
    1 30 count package of corn tortillas
    2 (8 oz) cans of enchilada sauce

    For Both you can add shredded Chicken if you like

    Preheat oven to 350

    tear or cut totillas into quarters.

    start with a little sauce on bottom of pan. then layer tortilla, cheese, sauce until you run out. End with a layer of cheese.

    Bake covered for about 30 to 40 minutes until tortillas are soft.

    You can garnish with diced onion, black olives, diced tomatoe or just leave plain

  4. Pamela says:

    Brickle sounds so yumm! I am defiantly trying that for my next get together..tell your friend thanks for the recipe!

  5. Chris says:

    I like the idea of finger foods and tapas like bites for holiday parties

    I have been working on an egg nog creme brulee

    happy holidays

  6. Annie says:

    Can’t wait to try the Brickle and the Enchiladas!

    Anyone have any great recipes for Brussel Sprouts?

  7. NiinaC says:

    I tried the brickles, they were delish!
    Thank you for the recepi!

  8. Sue says:

    I want to make Lisa’s Brickle but need more info. Need some claification on Lisa’s Brickle recipe…does 4 sleeves of crackers mean a box? Is this recipe for one cookie sheet full of crackers? If I use 4 sleeves that means more than one cookie sheet. Help! Thanks, Sue

  9. Anita says:

    I have made brickle for years now & this year instead of the saltines, I made some w/ graham crackers! They were delicious as well!

  10. Jessica says:

    Hey Annie! Got a great idea for Brussels Sprouts that my kids love as much as my hubby and I do!

    Start by cooking bacon, procuttio or pancetta in a little bit of EVOO til it’s nice and crisp.

    Remove the crisped meat and let it drain on a paper towel.

    To the bacon drippings (add EVOO if there is not enough fat in the pan) add a clove of minced garlic and a diced shallot. Sautee til tender – just a couple of mintues.

    Add in the sprouts and a half cup of chicken stock. Cover and turn up the heat to medium high (helps to steam the sprouts).

    Once the sprouts are bright green and just starting to look tender, remove the lid and add about a cup of balsamic vinegar or red wine. Either taste great!

    Let the liquid reduce to coat the sprouts, add the crisped meat back in and serve!

  11. Caroline says:

    I did something similar one holiday season, though I approached it from the dessert & not the appetizer end. I so much wanted to have friends in for the holidays, but I was seriously short on time. So instead of throwing my usual elaborate dinner party (and completely exhausting myself in the process) I held several “dessert evenings” instead. I invited small groups of friends (4 to 6 people) whom I thought might have the most in common with each other to share desserts, after-dinner drinks and conversation. Guests began arriving at about 8pm (allowing my husband & me time enough to have a simple & quiet dinner alone). The desserts were all store-bought: small cakes, petits fours, candies and the like (just took one quick trip through Trader Joe’s to gather it all) which I arranged on the dining room table on trays & cake dishes as prettily as I could. I lit lots of candles and made sure I had flowers (some store bought, but most just pretty lengths of evergreens I clipped from my yard). I set out a good, but not expensive or huge, selection of after-dinner drinks, plus coffee and tea. My guest served themselves using my best crystal, linen and china, so no work for me and since this only involved the dessert plates and a few glasses, later clean-up was a breeze. The house, in the glow of holiday lights (I go to some trouble to decorate), looked great and helped to set a lovely tone. What was best, though, was watching how my guests, since we were such a small group, had the chance to talk and really connect with each other. I did this four or five times that holiday season. Easy for me and possibly the most successful entertaining I’ve ever done—-my guests enjoyed the desserts, but mostly they enjoyed each other.

  12. n says:

    I’m sorry I didn’t read the brickle recipe in time to make for the holidays…Did anyone see Racael Ray on Oprah?? I tried the fudge super easy, but I used Granola instead of nuts, pretty yummy!

  13. n says:

    I’m sorry I didn’t read the brickle recipe in time to make for the holidays…Did anyone see Rachael Ray on Oprah?? I tried the fudge super easy, but I used Granola instead of nuts, pretty yummy!

  14. Stacey says:

    Colby rocks!!! Is he married or would he like to be??? I’d marry him in about 2 seconds(or less) Stacey

  15. Dean Garrett says:

    I just love you and think you are the cutest thing to come along in a long time. You are so refreshing to watch. I love to watch your 30-minute prgram. I really love your $40 a day program. I love traveling with you on Tasty Travels also. You are a delight to watch. You look like you truly enjoy what you do. loyal watcher, Dean

  16. helen okeefe says:

    I tried to get the recipe for tuna and white beans. It was on the reduced fat triscuit box as an hors d’ouevre

  17. Hayden says:

    I just checked out the website Liz talked about (above). very cute!! I made my own profile and added a recipe. I love the idea of it, whoever thought of a website like that is genius!

Leave a Reply