Subject: New Years Eve!
Just some thoughts!
What I would do if I was having your party!
I would probably begin at about 10:00, and have all of the fires lit and welcome everyone with my favorite champagne cocktail at the door!
Pear Champagne Cocktail
1 ounce of pear eau de vie (chilled!)
5 to 6 ounces of very chilled champagne
1 strip of pear (chilled)
Pour Eau de vie into a champagne flute(glasses rimmed with sugar!), fill with champagne and garnish with the pear!
For the bar
I'd serve champagne with several different aperitifs to put into them. (lots of sugared glasses) Peach liqueur, Midori, Lillet,Chambord, Creme de Cassis
I would also have a coffee bar with lots of different liqueurs(Baileys, Kahlua, Jamesons Whisky, creme de menthe) and a huge silver bowl filled with fluffy whipped cream and the usual cream and sugar on the side.
The last thing that I would do is a wassail bowl which is a gorgeous centerpiece in itself!
Mix together and heat through ,serve with a slice of sugared apple!
I usually take my punch bowl and put it on the center of the table inside of a gorgeous wreath of greenery!
I'd serve an appetizer with the first glass of champagne, something like a little cheese puff to help soak up the alcohol from before. A chicken salad triangle or crab puff is nice too. Nothing eggy like quiche...BAD with that much alcohol!
Now for the drama.....
I still think that it would be wonderful to hang sheer black curtains in your entry between the dining room and the foyer. At the very least, how about huge black velvet bows that could be united with a flourish when it's time to go in. I'd have candles lit on each small table in the dining room. I'd have dancing start immediately (remember to have a couple or two primed to start!) At about 11:00 I'd throw open the porch doors so that everyone can just be amazed by your DESSERT table! Have all of the candles lit in the porch ,but the doors shut so that they can see the flickering flames but not really the food. I'd pick a fabulous piece of music to be playing when you open those doors (Tchaikovsky's sugarplum fairy or something cool like that!)
Now......For the desserts, and believe it or not this is EASY!
First off, make sure that you have a bowl of fresh fruit and lots of whipped cream or even better, a bowl of custard to go with it!
I would definitely have a great trifle maybe two!
For a wonderful centerpiece dessert, a buche d' noel (Yule Log) if you don't have a recipe, I have thousands! You can probably buy one, but it's really simple to make!
Go to the grocery store and purchase those little cream puffs (frozen) and serve them on a gorgeous platter with chocolate syrup or raspberry or caramel, then garnish with some mint leaves.
Have a huge bowl of cherries, (very medieval) for Christmas!
If you can bring yourself to make a Tarte Tatin (French apple tart) it's great with tons of whipped cream. Besides it's a great excuse to go and get the mauviel copper tart tatin pan from Williams sonoma!( Now you know what I'm serving for Christmas dessert!)
A platter of chocolate truffles is really good with all of this!
A huge crystal bowl of chocolate mousse( possibly the easiest thing in the world) garnished with cinnamon flavored whipped cream.
AND.....for fun, one chafing dish dessert like a bananas foster, with really good vanilla bean ice cream. Much easier than you think!
If they are in season let Douglas make chocolate covered strawberries, you can usually get decent berries from California right about now. Have them be white and dark chocolate.
Then you need a cheese platter, BIG, wedges of Brie, Camembert, A stilton is good (especially that cranberry one) and a few more. Just some plain crackers , apples and pear and you're done with that.
Make sure that you have a gingerbread house for the kids to eat!
I would definitely have a favor for each woman to take home, how about a lovely,inexpensive little votive candle to light the New Year? (wreath scented!
TONS OF MISTLETOE FOR KISSING UNDER!
Love and Hugs,