Another New Year’s Day is here and I am starting the year off right by updating my blog – a New Yea’s resolution I hope to keep!
Last night we continued the tradition of celebrating the New Year by enjoying a special dinner. This tradition began decades ago after George and I experienced the worst New Year’s Eve ever. A group of us decided to ring in the new year at one of those hotel parties. The food was beyond bad, the music mediocre and the gaiety way to forced. From that moment on we decided we could make better use of the funds if we dined at home with a really special dinner. As my confidence grew the number of courses increased. And then we started inviting friends, who, like us, were not fond of celebrating en masse. Over the years I have served seven to nine courses to as many as twelve people (only once, believe me!)
Usually I start planning my menu the day after Christmas. This year we had a full house which kept me busy so my planning window shortened significantly. This meant I would have to simplify. I decided to base my menu around a single protein family – seafood. All except dessert. I told George I would not be pulling a version of “Chopped” by trying to make dessert out of seafood.
Friday morning I shopped and I made all the components of the entire meal on Friday afternoon and Saturday.
New Year’s Eve is one of the few times I pull out all the stops and set the table with the crystal, the formal dishes and the formal silver. I even use the salt cellars!
Here’s the menu:
2016 New Year’s Eve Celebration
Shrimp and Smoked Salmon in Phyllo Baskets
Lobster Mousse with Lemon Sauce
Sea Scallop Salad with Cucumber Dressing
Salmon en Croute
Chocolate Mousse with Blueberry Orange Sauce
For the most part everything turned out pretty well. I wasn’t as happy with the appetizers as I could have been. For the Shrimp I thinned some cream cheese with cocktail sauce and
added chopped shrimp. The baskets were garnished with a cooked shrimp. The Smoked Salmon was a mix of thinned cream cheese beaten with chopped smoked salmon. The salmon baskets were garnished with pieces of smoked salmon. In the future I will replace the cream cheese base with a mousse but over all they weren’t bad. We ate the leftover bases with crackers today at lunch so I got double duty out of that prep!
Over the next several days I’ll share the balance of the recipes for those that are interested.
Happy New Year to you all!