If you’re starting to feel snacky around Christmas, it is because the holiday season is meant for those extra moments of indulgences; a bite here, a sip of your drink there. What’s even more fun is planning a menu with small bites for your upcoming party on the eve of Christmas, that you can enjoy by serving up these delicious appetizers.
For any holiday party, appetizers play a crucial role in setting the tone and enhancing the overall dining experience. Welcoming guest by way of piquing their appetites and setting a convivial atmosphere encourages them to mingle with one another while enjoying bite-sized treats. Besides, as the drinks keep flowing, one must fortify the body against experiencing a hangover the next day; and good food plays a key role in shielding the body against these harmful side effects. Having a diverse selection of small bites on offer allows guests to explore different ingredients and cooking styles that they may have not imagined being thrown together to create an innovative and delicious snack, while also keeping them satisfied as they socialize. Here are seven appetizer ideas that are sure to become crowd-pleasers at your upcoming gathering.
Amritsari Fish Bites
Image Credits: Delicious
Battered fish that is delicately skewered and deep-fried is the perfect hot snack to serve your guests while they decide what they’d like to drink. Delicate pieces of fish coated in a batter flavoured with spices, carrom seeds and a touch of rice flour, for crispness and deep-fried, is the perfect small bite to serve with a delicious green chutney and pickled onions on the side. Serve this warm appetizer with cold beer or a sweet cocktail, that can offset the spice levels of the battered fish.
Glazed Cocktail Sausages
Zhuzh up a packet of store-bought cocktail sausages with a coating of honey and grainy mustard before baking them until golden-brown. The sweet honey and the pungent spicy mustard are a delicious flavour combination against the savoury sausages. Make these with chicken or pork sausages and serve them in a bread bowl, for guests to pick with toothpicks. Once the sausages are over and the fat and flavour seeps into the bread, cut it up and enjoy as an after-party snack in solitude.
Festive eating can be made slightly healthy with swaps like ragi crust instead of a regular pizza crust to top up with whatever you like. Use a sourdough starter to ferment your ragi flour based dough to make this a gut-friendly option and top it off with veggies like mushrooms, bell peppers, seasonal leafy greens or even pepperoni for a classic take. Alternately, make mini crusts that are partially cooked and top it off with the custom requests of your guest to serve them their freshly baked personal pie.
Image Credits: Olive Tomato
Who said salads must be reserved only for healthy days when you can skewer cherry tomatoes and bocconcini and dip them in pesto! Fresh, soft bocconcini and sweet cherry tomatoes are a fun finger food to enjoy on their own or with some crusty bread, as a way to soak up the alcohol. Smaller portions also mean that your guests get to enjoy a little bit of everything without feeling too full, early on into the party.
Mini dosas filled with potatoes, pulled jackfruit or pulled pork are perfect and creative – leaving your guests intrigued and also wanting more. Dosa tacos are a great way to add an element of fermented foods in your diet, and also present what would typically eaten for breakfast, in an innovative manner. Depending on your preferences, you can choose to make your dosas fluffy and soft, or thin and crispy, before it is filled with all kinds of delicious savoury ingredients.
Spinach Cheese Dip
Image Credits: Flickr
This warm, oven-baked dip infused with garlic, cheddar cheese and spinach is a refreshing break from the cold dips that are typically passed around at a party. Fresh spinach, that is available in plenty during the winters, offers a great foundation to break from the richness of the cheese or variety of cheeses like mozzarella, cheddar, pepper jack or Swiss. Pair this warm dip with chips, lavash, warm pita bread, sourdough crostini and even air-fried roti chips to complement the savoury hit from the dip.
Serve up shot glasses filled with creamy, caramel-flavoured basundi to satiate the sweet tooth of your guests and have a sweet option for anyone who would want one. Get creative and serve up a parfait-style dessert bite by layering your basundi with crushed biscuits, nut butter and chopped up nuts like almonds or pistachios for texture. Although a cocktail party doesn’t necessarily need a sweet ending to your menu, it is always best to serve a small portion that is manageable and not too overwhelming to eat.