Want to be the hostess with the mostess this Christmas? You can do it quite easily with the right ingredients. We pride ourselves on giving good soiree so we spent an afternoon testing out some fuss-free recipes (with your festive fun in mind) and learnt to whip up a couple of cocktails and delish bites in a flash.
To seek inspiration for our menu, we browsed the FairPrice Finest Christmas catalogue. We selected the best of the produce and built up our stylish spread from there.
For the cocktails, we found recipes perfect for finishing up the leftover bottles of vodka around the house!
We tried our hands at mixing two cocktails- metropolitan (variation of cosmopolitan using black-currant vodka) and pear vodka mojito (sweetened take on the classic mojito) – and discovered that a few of us had the chops to be resident mixologists! We recommend investing in a shaker and a set of martini style glasses for an authentic cocktail party experience.
Metropolitan would be the slightly trickier drink between the two, and requires a little work with the shaker. Pop in a few ice cubes into the mix of vodka kurant, orange liqueur, cranberry juice, and lime juice (feel free to replace the juices depending on your preference) – shake well and serve with a slice of lime.
Pear vodka mojito was child’s play even for the novices, and merely took a couple of minutes to fix up. Throw in a few leaves of mint and ice cubs into the cocktail glass; add in the vodka pear, lime juice, and soda– voila!
As for the nibblies, we made sure to include a vegetarian option and chose caprese canapes. We also suggest serving a seafood alternative such as smoked salmon blinis. Be sure to start off with the caprese canapés, which require an hour of refrigeration. Mix halved cherry tomatoes and mini mozzarella balls (with a sprinkle of salt and drizzle of vinegar) in a bowl, and assemble them on toothpicks after refrigeration.
Speed up the preparation time for the smoked salmon blini canapés by grabbing a packet of ready-made cocktail blinis. To serve, spread a layer of soured cream on each blini, place a spoonful of seasoned diced salmon (with lemon juice and a dash of pepper) atop and garnish with a strip of lemon zest.
Need to fill up the food table? Supplement the canapés with a bowl of tortilla chips and servings of ready-made assorted dips. We swear by guacamole dip!
We wrapped up the preparation in under an hour and a half, and spent the rest of the afternoon lounging in the garden, sipping on homemade cocktails, and relishing our savoury spread. Could definitely get used to this kind of living!
All ingredients for these recipes were purchased at FairPrice Finest.
This article was contributed by Honeycombers.
Metropolitan Cocktail Recipe
- 2 oz Vodka Absolut Kurant
- 1 oz Orange Liqueur
- 1 oz Cranberry Juice (Frozen Concentrate)
- 1/2 oz Lime Juice
- Add the ingredients in a shaker along with a few ice cubes.
- You could also replace the black-currant vodka with a mix of vodka and Creme de Cassis.
- Shake vigorously for a few seconds and pour in a cocktail glass.
- Serve straight up (without ice) if you want to keep the full taste.
Pear Vodka Mojito Cocktail Recipe
- 1 1/2 oz Vodka (Pear)
- 1 oz Lime Juice
- 3/4 oz Simple Syrup
- 3 oz Club soda
- 8 Mint Leaves
- Muddle mint leaves with simple syrup and lime juice in bottom of glass
- Add ice
- Add vodka
- Fill with club soda
- (optional) Garnish with lime wheel and mint sprig
Caprese Canapes Recipe
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1 cup mini mozzarella pearls
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 4 tablespoons white balsamic vinaigrette
- 2 tablespoons light good-quality olive oil
- 30 small basil leaves
- Combine the tomatoes and mozzarella in a bowl with the salt, vinegar and oil. Stir well and set to refrigerate for an hour.
- Once ready, assemble the canapés using a tomato bottom, mozzarella ball, basil leaf and tomato top.
- Arrange on a platter for serving. If not serving immediately, place in the fridge loosely wrapped with plastic wrap until ready to serve. Best when eaten the same day they are prepared.
Smoked Salmon Blini Canapes Recipe
- 1 lemon, zest and juice only
- 200g/7oz smoked salmon
- 20-24 ready-made cocktail blinis
- 1 small shallot, finely chopped
- 142ml/5fl oz soured cream
- Small bunch fresh dill
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Use a lemon zester to remove thin strips of zest from the lemon, taking care to avoid the white pith, which tastes bitter. Put the strips to one side.
- To dice the salmon, pile up the slices of smoked salmon into a stack. Using a very sharp knife, cut across the stack to give you thin strips. Turn the stack 90 degrees and cut across the strips again so that end up with fine dice. Place into a bowl.
- Add the juice of half of the lemon, or more to taste, and season with freshly ground black pepper.
- Add the finely chopped shallot and mix well.
- To serve, spread a layer of soured cream onto each blini. Place a spoonful of the salmon mixture on top of the soured cream and garnish each with a small sprig of dill and a strip of lemon zest.