Having friends and family over for the holidays doesn’t have to be difficult. With these tips and a savory recipe from the all new “Entertaining Chapter” of the latest edition of the “Betty Crocker Cookbook,” (Wiley, 2011), experienced and novice hosts can pull off a festive party with ease.
Setting a Buffet Table
Buffets are a great option when the gathering is less formal or you’re short on table space.
What to Serve
Cheese plates are a great idea for an easy and elegant buffet. When selecting cheese, aim for variety – try mixing textures (soft, semisoft, hard and very hard) and flavors (mellow and sharp). Plan on at least 2 ounces of cheese per person. Here are some delicious cheese plate combinations:
1 cup crushed butter-flavored crackers (about 24 crackers)
3 tablespoons butter, melted
2 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup whipping cream
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups shredded Gouda cheese
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons sliced green onions, divided
1 package (4.5 ounces) smoked salmon, flaked
2 tablespoons red caviar, optional
Heat oven to 375 degrees.
In small bowl, stir butter-flavored crackers and butter until thoroughly mixed. Press evenly in bottom of 9-inch springform pan. Bake for 8 minutes, or until golden brown.
Reduce oven temperature to 325°F.
In large bowl, beat cream cheese with electric mixer on medium speed until smooth. Add whipping cream, eggs and salt; beat until smooth. Stir in Gouda cheese, 1/4 cup green onions and salmon until mixed. Spoon evenly over crust.
Bake for 45 to 50 minutes, or until center is set. Run knife around edge of pan to loosen cheesecake. Cool completely at room temperature, about 1 hour. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, but no longer than 48 hours.
Remove side of pan. Place cheesecake on serving platter. Top with remaining green onions and caviar, if desired. Cut cheesecake into wedges and serve with crackers. Yields 36 servings.
Whether you want to learn how to grow and raise your own food, build your own root cellar, or create a green dream home, come out and learn everything you need to know — and then some!LEARN MORE