Holiday Appetizers for Hosting - Michael Aram

Holiday Appetizers for Hosting

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Food That Brings People Together 

The festive season is all about community: family and friends assembling over good food. If it’s your turn to host, these varied holiday appetizers can keep your guests satisfied and entertained while awaiting the main course. Arranged on porcelain dinnerware or elegant Christmas serving dishes, they will bring color and life to any festive table.  

  

Bruschetta Crostinis with Goat’s Cheese  

A recipe that is as simple as it is effective, this appetizer matches up the depth of the garlic rub with the creaminess of the goat's cheese and the crunch of the bread playing off against the softness of the topping.  

Simply cut some good french bread into even slices, and then either toast or, ideally, grill until crisp or until char marks appear on the bread. While it’s still hot, rub with raw garlic, sprinkle over some good-quality olive oil and set aside.   

For the topping, either simply place slices of goat's cheese on top or, if you are feeling creative, whip together the goat's cheese with two tablespoons of olive oil, by hand or in a blender, with some salt until it is a creamy texture. Top with some fresh basil, and present it on your best serving dish 

 

Roasted Figs with Bacon Finger Foods  

These taste explosions are the ultimate combination of depth and simplicity. The sweetness of the figs melds into the salty fat of the bacon until the two are fused in one glorious whole.  

The recipe can be scaled to whatever size you need but works around one simple formula — one fig to one rasher of bacon.  

Simply wrap each fig in its singular rasher of bacon, securing the meat in place with a toothpick (our top tip — wet any exposed part of the toothpick to ensure it doesn’t burn in the oven). You might have to trim the bacon down to size.  

Pop them in the oven and bake until the bacon has crisped up. The figs at this point should be soft to the touch.  

And there you are. Arrange in a line along a narrow serving tray and serve to your guests. Pair with a light red wine in some fine glassware.   

 

Roasted Maple Veggies 

A classic holiday appetizer or side dish. This can work with your choice of root vegetables.   

Simply coat the whole veg in a mixture of butter, maple syrup, and salt, and roast at medium-high heat until the veggies are soft to the touch and caramelized at the edges. 

Using enough butter and syrup to ensure sufficient liquid and repeated basting are advised to let them cook through without burning.  

These sweet, savory veggies exemplify what the holiday season is about. Warming, natural, comforting food that is there to bring people together, to have people huddled over beautiful dinnerware full of beautiful food, enjoying the season.  

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