Success! It was a success! We invited roughly 35-40 people and had about 50 show up! I made 2 BIG pots of chili and appetizers for the evening, and we had a never-ending bar with all the bottles of liquor brought by each guest and beer on tap. My co-worker Sally took first place with an ugly sweater and matching that she made. Most of the guests were raving about the Cranberry BBQ Meatballs and Chili, so here's the recipe for the meatballs. We ran out early after doubling the recipe. They were delish! Enjoy the pics!
Like Amy, I was a bit confused about the actual challenge. Was it something beautiful or a food board.. So I did both. I don't know if the food board was beautiful but it was definitely a beautiful moment.
The food board was somewhat simple.
Fruits, veggies, meats, cheeses, hard boiled eggs and some kind of breads and or crackers.
I made a simple vegetable soup to go along with it. Veggie soup ingredients are really any kind you like. Last night was carrots, onions, black beans, canned diced tomatoes, corn and shell pasta. I used chicken broth as the liquid base and sprinkled with Parmesan cheese . I added a little thyme and sage.
I think what I loved most about this challenge was the simplicity in the beauty of what would be considered ordinary.
The husband liked it so well that I might do this more often.
Full disclosure, I completely misunderstood Nikita's text. I saw board and appetizers and took it to mean an appetizer board. Georgia showed me the text again and the challenge was to make something beautiful. I don't have a deep understanding of physical beauty but I understand cozy and cheerful. The fact that I prepared this little morning soiree with love and enjoyed it with my best friend made it beautiful.
To get to the heart of this table of nosh:
Thinking it was an appetizer board challenge I looked for ideas for small appetizer boards. To be specific, diabetic-friendly appetizer boards. The crazy thing is, I found one via kraft.com Yes, that Kraft. I purchased a handmade trivet at my favorite produce stand, Custer Farm. Not a board but still works. While there I obtained a tea towel, homemade bon bons and divinity. I made these delightful breakfast sausages that I made last Christmas and served them in a wee crock that had belonged to uncle Dez. Cups of fresh made mocha. I purchased a couple of Pioneer Woman holiday items to bring a splash of warm vibrant colors.A couple of candles for a sense of serenity and peace. Add a couple of wee fresh poinsettias and I feel a created a table full of love and hygge.
For the appetizer board:
2 honey crisp apples (my favorite)
Diced cheese (I used Sharp cheddar and Monterrey Jack)
Roasted walnuts (I used cinnamon cream honey, ground cinnamon and a touch of kosher salt)
Assorted candies (homemade or otherwise)
Mocha (Penzeys hot chocolate mix, milk, coffee and a sprinkle of cinnamon)
Cranberry and Soy-Glazed Cocktail Sausages inspired by Nigella Lawson
I used Johnsonville honey and brown sugar breakfast sausage
Thai or Chinese sweet chili sauce
Dark brown sugar
Juice of 1 clementine
Juice of 1 lime.
I'm not bothering with exact measurements because it all depends on how many sausages you use. The original recipe is for 50. I saw no need to make 50. It's all about your personal palette. I didn't use brown sugar since it is in the sausage. Blend the ingredients and add sausage. Preheat oven to 400°F and bake 30-45 minutes turning the sausage after about 20 minutes. I like to put it together the night before and refrigerate. Let it marinate.
So, this table created with love is my idea of beautiful.
Thank you Nikita for truly challenging us!!
Until next week,
Nikita, Georgia and Amy
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