Little KatieSugar is almost 1 year old! It's amazing watching her grow each day and I'm super excited to announce that I've been asked to plan her first birthday! A blowout bash like no other, the event will be casual and familiar with most of the guests being Katie's parent's friends and families. The party will be chicly decorated in every girl's favorite color (myself included): pink and all of the food will be finger friendly and bite-sized. The invitations are in the process of being mass produced and sent, so now it's time to move on to creating a miniature menu. To see what finger foods, I'll be making for the Sugars,
The menu will be inspired by traditional all-American barbecue food.
Mini Crab Cakes
will be plated and waiting for the guests to arrive. Large krinkle cut potato chips or toasted baguette slices can house dollops of
and finger licking good
Buffalo Chicken Wings
will add a touch of heat.
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 large egg
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
3/4 teaspoon Old Bay Seasoning
1 1/2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
1/8 teaspoon Tabasco
1 lb jumbo lump crabmeat, picked over
4 cups cornflakes
tomato ginger jam, recipe below
thinly sliced fresh cilantro, optional garnish
- Whisk together mayonnaise, egg, mustard, Old Bay, lemon juice, salt, pepper, and Tabasco, then gently stir in crabmeat. Chill, covered, 2 hours.
- Pulse cornflakes in a food processor until coarsely ground and put in a shallow dish. Form 1 heaping teaspoon crab mixture into a 1 1/2-inch-diameter cake (mixture will be very moist), then gently dredge in cornflakes.
- Make more crab cakes in same manner, transferring to buttered baking sheets.
- Chill, covered, at least 1 hour.
- Preheat oven to 400°F.
- Bake crab cakes in batches in middle of oven until crisp and golden, 8 to 10 minutes.
- Transfer with a spatula to a platter and top each with about 1/2 tablespoon tomato ginger jam.
Make ahead: unbaked crab cakes can chill up to 4 hours.
Makes 36 hors d'oeuvres.
1/4 cup minced shallot
1 tablespoon finely grated peeled fresh ginger
1 large garlic clove, minced
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/8 teaspoon dried hot red pepper flakes
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 tablespoon sugar
1 1/2 lb plum tomatoes, seeded and finely chopped
1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh cilantro
- Cook shallot, ginger, garlic, salt, black pepper, and red pepper flakes in butter in a 10-inch heavy skillet over moderately low heat, stirring, until shallot is softened, about 5 minutes.
- Add sugar and cook, stirring, until dissolved.
- Add tomatoes and simmer over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until thickened, 10 to 15 minutes.
Cool jam to room temperature, then stir in lime juice and cilantro.
Make ahead: jam can be made 2 days ahead and chilled, covered. Stir in lime juice and cilantro just before serving.
Makes about 1 1/4 cups.
1-tablespoon vegetable oil
1 shallot, minced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 (10-ounce) package frozen chopped spinach, thawed
1 (6-ounce) jar marinated artichoke hearts, roughly chopped
10 bacon strips, fried until crisp and crumbled
1 teaspoon lemon zest
2 cups sour cream
1-teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- Heat the vegetable oil in a small skillet over medium low heat. Add the garlic and shallot and cook, stirring frequently, until the shallot softens and the garlic begins to brown, about 7 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
- Put the spinach in a colander and squeeze out all of the excess water.
- Transfer to a large mixing bowl and add the artichoke hearts, crumbled bacon, cooked garlic and shallot, lemon zest, sour cream, salt and pepper.
- Mix well with a rubber spatula, and transfer to a decorative bowl.
- Allow to sit for 30 minutes before serving so the flavors can blend.
- Serve with crispy croutons.
1 French-bread baguette, sliced into rounds
2 cloves garlic, peeled
2 tbls olive oil
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Arrange bread slices on 2 baking sheets. Bake bread until crisp and golden brown, about 15 minutes.
- Rub remaining 2 garlic cloves over 1 side of each crouton.
- Lightly brush croutons with remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil.
- Serve croutons warm or at room temperature with dips. (Can be prepared 3 days ahead. Cool croutons completely; store in airtight container at room temperature.)
4 pounds chicken wings
3 tablespoons cooking oil
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 3/4 teaspoons salt
1 1/2 teaspoons cayenne
2/3 cup mayonnaise
1/3 cup sour cream
1/4 pound blue cheese, crumbled (about 1 cup)
2 scallions including green tops, chopped
5 teaspoons vinegar
1/4 teaspoon fresh-ground black pepper
1/4 cup ketchup
1 tablespoon Tabasco sauce
8 ribs celery, cut into sticks
- Heat the oven to 425°. In a large bowl, combine the wings, oil, garlic, 1 1/2 teaspoons of the salt, and the cayenne.
- Arrange the wings in a single layer on two large baking sheets. Bake until just done, about 25 minutes.
- Meanwhile, in a medium glass or stainless-steel bowl, combine the mayonnaise, sour cream, blue cheese, scallions, 1 teaspoon of the vinegar, the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, and the black pepper.
- In a large bowl, combine the ketchup, the remaining 4 teaspoons vinegar, and the Tabasco sauce. Add the wings and toss to coat.
- Serve the wings with the celery sticks and blue-cheese dressing alongside.
Got a great appetizer recipe for KatieSugar's 1st birthday party? Share your ideas below. Come back later this afternoon for more of the mini menu.