Gourmet holiday entertaining is a cinch with Dean & DeLuca online. Here are some holiday menu ideas designed to help you enjoy your party as much as your guests will.
This post was sponsored by Dean & DeLuca but all opinions are my own, as always. Thank you for supporting the brands that support this blog.
‘Tis the season to hunt for new holiday menu ideas so your party stands out from the crowd. I’ve partnered with Dean & DeLuca to bring you three unique recipes. But one look at their web site and you’ll be overflowing with ideas of your own, too.
Once upon a time, you had to hightail it to Soho to experience this gourmet foodie mecca. But thanks to the internet you can make Dean & DeLuca’s high end products a part of your #GourmetEveryday life without leaving your home. And world class entertaining has never been easier. (That said, the next time you’re in Downtown NYC you should definitely light up your Instagram feed with pics of their stunning flagship retail store.)
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OK, so it’s awesome if you want to stock up on Dean & DeLuca products to enjoy all year round. Don’t let me stop you! But our focus today is how to use them to elevate your holiday menu ideas.
So, what are the cornerstones of a great party menu?
- A signature cocktail that’s mixed and ready to go as soon as your guests arrive.
- An easy appetizer that can sit for a while and still look irresistible.
- A make-ahead side dish that feeds a crowd.
The idea here is that these three things should be easy to assemble so you can enjoy your time with your guests.
Gourmet Holiday Menu Ideas with Dean & DeLuca
In my opinion, If you’re going to spend actual party time on anything it should be your main dish. But, honestly, I usually make a roast of some kind that basically cooks itself so I can celebrate uninterrupted. I mean, how often do I get to see these people?
If you’ve been to this blog before you know where I’m starting. With the cocktail! I purchased the Original Ginger Fruit Shrub from Dean & DeLuca because I’ve been hearing a lot about shrubs lately. Well, they’re all-the-rage for a reason. Also known as “drinking vinegars” they cut the sweetness with a nice, acidic pop at the back of the throat.
This shrub in particular has the added spiciness of ginger which basically screams “happy holidays!” I mixed it with equal parts vodka and triple sec to make a dreamy signature cocktail your guests are sure to remember. Unless they drink too much of it.
No bartender? No problem. Mix it up in a pitcher and put it out next to some ice so your guests can easily help themselves. It also makes a great ‘mocktail’ with some seltzer.
Next up is the appetizer. My eyes popped out of their sockets when I saw the Yuzu Marmalade on Dean & DeLuca’s web site. My order changed a gajillion times before I pressed the button but that marmalade was on the list from version ONE. Citrus is a holiday tradition. Clementines are probably most popular but I’m always trying to do things a little bit differently. So I made crostini using Dean & DeLuca’s yuzu marmalade with smoked salmon and fresh ricotta cheese.
Gourmet Holiday Menu Ideas with Dean & DeLuca
It’s citrusy tang and the texture of the rind plays very nicely off the salty salmon and creamy ricotta. Not only is it devastatingly delicious but the citrus is echoed in the triple sec so it pairs really well with our cocktail.
If you’re hosting a brunch, this yuzu marmalade is a great way to liven up your lox and bagels spread.
Now how about that side dish? There’s just something about passing a casserole dish around the table that makes everyone at that table feel like family. So, I created a classic scalloped potato casserole for you with a gourmet twist. Fire roasted poblano peppers!
I love the creamy, cheesy comfort of classic scalloped potatoes but I’m always wishing there were a little bit of heat in there. Dean & DeLuca’s Fire Roasted Poblano Peppers delivered on my wish flawlessly. It’s not so hot that anyone would complain but so fun to watch that surprised smile flash across your guests’ faces.
I would say the fourth cornerstone of a memorable dinner party menu is dessert. My recommendation (because I have limited skills in this arena?) Outsource dessert completely. Dean & DeLuca has approximately 1,756,345 to choose from.
When it comes to entertaining I get by with a little help from my friends. And I’m proud to count Dean & DeLuca among them!
- 3 13 oz bottles Ginger Fruit Shrub if you plan to use the whole liter of vodka
- 1 liter vodka
- 1 liter triple sec
- 1 baguette makes 20 to 24 crostini
- 1 jar Yuzu Marmalade
- Smoked salmon
- Fresh ricotta cheese
- 2 pounds yukon gold potatoes or other waxy skinned, sliced in 1/8 inch slices
- 1 cup milk
- 1/2 cup lowfat cottage cheese
- 1/2 cup Fire Roasted Poblano Peppers
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 3 tablespoons tapioca starch
- 1 cup grated gouda cheese
Mix ingredients in a 1:1:1 ratio.
Stir and pour over ice in a rocks glass.
Arrange baguette slices in a single layer on baking sheet.
Broil until golden brown, about two minutes, rotating sheet if necessary.
Spread a thin layer of Yuzu Marmalade on top of crostini.
Top with a piece of smoked salmon and a dollop of ricotta.
Preheat oven to 350˚ F
Lightly oil a casserole dish.
Combine milk, cottage cheese and peppers in a blender until creamy and foamy.
In a skillet over medium flame, melt butter.
Add tapioca starch and stir until roux darkens.
Add milk mixture and simmer until it thickens. Remove from heat.
Layer 1/2 the potato slices on the bottom of your greased casserole dish.
Pour about 1/2 the milk mixture on top.
Sprinkle half the grated cheese on top of that.
Layer remaining potatoes.
Pour the rest of the milk mixture over the potatoes.
Top with the rest of the cheese.
Cover with foil and bake 30 minutes.
Remove foil and bake another 20 - 30 minutes, until sauce is bubbling up and potatoes are fork tender.
*No need to peel the potatoes but slice as uniformly as possible.
*Potatoes can be made a day or two in advance and heated through just before serving.