There’s something strangely sad yet exciting about New Year’s Eve, as you bid goodbye to one year and say hello to the next. But you’ve got to embrace it, and there are only two ways to go: keep it cosy with close family or get your friends and relatives around for a big bash.
Either way, it’s important that you’re organised. Prep the food as much as possible the day before, make space in your fridge and think about how you’re going to serve it all. Decorated tables, big platters and beautiful boards will really impress. I’d also suggest asking friends to contribute nibbles and drinks – be strategic, play to their strengths and get everyone to bring something different.
Set up a bar with various spirits and ingredients to make some brilliant cocktails and fill the bath with a load of ice so you can keep the beers super cold. In all the years that I’ve been throwing parties, I’ve found that making a round of bacon sarnies at 1am will get you more praise than anything else you’ve done, so make sure you’re well stocked on the essentials!
To get you started, here are two platters you can knock up in advance and really impress every one (with minimum effort!). Have fun with these recipes and have a great New Year.
Fruity little forks
For bites that are a little bit retro and a lot of fun, try wrapping cured meats around fruit. You can pop your wrapped fruits on a platter or wrap them around forks and let everyone help themselves to these heavenly little mouthfuls.
Prosciutto and melon
Cut a melon in half and scoop out the seeds, then carefully cut it into wedges. Remove the skin, then wrap some slices of prosciutto around the pieces of melon.
Bresaola and cherries
Destone fresh cherries and wrap them in slices of bresaola.
A cheeky cheeseboard
Shake up the boring old cheeseboard with these left-field serving tips.
Parmesan with pomegranate molasses
Buy a generous piece of Parmesan from your local deli, stick a sturdy knife in the top and twist the blade around to create lovely chunks. Serve drizzled with a little pomegranate molasses.
Pickled pears & walnuts with cheese
Drain some pickled pears (you can buy them at good delis or online), cut them into halves and quarters, and serve with walnuts and slices of Stilton or goat’s cheese.
Pecorino with honey & crushed coffee
Take a thin slice of pecorino cheese, drizzle with a little honey and top with a pinch of crushed coffee beans.
This article first appeared in Jamie Magazine.