Monday, January 21, 2013

Post-Holiday Party 2013 Recipe Round-up: Or, How I Learned To Stop Worrying and Embrace the Cocktail Weenie

I feel like this post needs a bit of a back story.

My sister called me on New Year's Eve, and we were discussing all the food we had made for our celebrations.  She had made a roasted duck with fresh root vegetables.  Her husband said he was bringing home some appetizers.  She thought "Ok, maybe he'll bring something lovely with puff pastry or the like."

He came home with two packages of cocktail weenies.  She was aghast, and deposited them in the freezer without any further thought.  Those were not getting served with her duck.

For that,  I don't blame her.  But I told her that sometimes, you just need to embrace the cocktail weenie.  They have their place (perhaps not beside duck...)

So, I embraced the cocktail weenie for my Annual Post-Holiday Party.  And my guests were thrilled.

I'll start this recipe round-up with the cocktail weenie recipes, and then on to the others.  I had a great time cooking, as did The Hubby, and several of his recipes will probably be up on his new blog, Having Fun Learning to Cook, when he gets a chance to post them.

Many of my inspirations came from Pinterest, so I'll post the link to the original recipe, and if I changed it at all, I'll post my recipe.

Puff Pastry Topped Cheesy Cocktail Weenies

The only thing I changed about this recipe was skewering cheesy cocktail weenies instead of sausage.

I used a mini snowflake cookie cutter to cut out the puff pastry.  These disappeared very quickly.  I did not do a dipping sauce, but there was some homemade mustard on the table that some people used on them.

Cocktail Weenie Stuffed Pretzel Bites

I followed the recipe in the link, but instead of using ham, I used cocktail weenies.

I also made some vegetarian ones stuffed with sundried tomatoes and cheese.

I carefully simmered the stuffed pretzel bites in baking soda laced water, and then baked them.

When they were done baking, I brushed them with melted butter and sprinkled with kosher salt.

These were also a HUGE hit.  All the cocktail weenies stuffed pretzel bites are gone.  I have a few of the vegetarian ones left, and I think they will be lovely in lunches.

Cocktail Weenie Stuffed BBQ Bacon Wrapped Jalapeno Thingies

This recipe was inspired by Pioneer Woman's Bacon Wrapped Jalapeno Thingies, which I have made before, brushed with BBQ sauce, like she does in her cookbook..

And then I saw this recipe with a cocktail weenie stuffed in the center of a bacon wrapped jalapeno, and it had to happen.  The verdict?  WONDERFUL.

Cheesy Beer Sauce Cocktail Weenies

I based the recipe on the one in the link, but I skipped the wrapping in bacon, and I couldn't find cheddar pasta sauce.  So, I mixed a bottle of beer with a jar of alfredo sauce, and added some mustard and boiled the sauce down until it was nice and thick.  To this, I added the cocktail weenies.

I kept it warm in a crockpot.  Yum yums.


That's all I did with cocktail weenies for the party, but there was much more food!

Caprese Stuffed Cherry Tomatoes

For these, I hollowed out cherry tomatoes (this was tedious, and if you wanted, using a slightly larger tomato would be much easier.  I used a hole punch tool from a bento shop, but you could use a straw or a tomato corer.  My melon baller was too big.  I filled a piping bag with finely chopped mozzerella, basil, and a little balsamic vinegar, and then filled the holes in the tomatoes.  These would be delightful in the summer, and if the kiddos would just eat tomatoes, they would be great in their lunches.  I'll be putting leftovers in my lunches and The Hubby's lunches this week.  I had several for breakfast on Sunday.  If you want, you can make the cheese all melty by heating them up for a few seconds in the microwave.  I think I'll be making these again.

Cornbread Stuffed Jalapenos

I saw this recipe and wanted to make these, partially because I have a vegetarian friend who was coming to the party and who is nuts for cornbread.  I did not have any canned or fresh corn, so I just made my normal cornbread recipe and put some cheese in it, and topped with extra cheese.  This was a good recipe, but it could have used some more zip.  I think if I make it again, I would add some chopped jalapeno to the cornbread, or corn, like the original recipe suggests.

Ginger-Lemon Grass Yogurt Dip

I saw a recipe for this on the Cabot website, and I made it pretty much according to their recipe, but without the lime zest.  Yums!

For this, I took about a cup of plain Greek yogurt, and stirred in about 3 Tbsp Gourmet Garden Lemongrass, about 1 Tbsp ground ginger, and about 1 Tbsp honey.  This was a lovely dip for fresh fruit.

Phyllo Wrapped Asparagus

So simple, and it adds a little something to the asparagus.  People loved it.  I served it with my homemade mustard.

And now, for my favorite thing that I made for the party, and for something that I will TOTALLY be making again, for lunches and future parties...

Puff Pastry Apple Roses

The original site for these is in some language that I'm not even sure what it is.  I used google translate, but there were still very minimal directions.

So, here's how to make them.

Slice a cored apple into very thin circles.  Do not peel.  I used a mandolin to get the slices even.  Blanch the apple slices for a minute or so, just until they are flexible, but not mushy.

Cut the circles in half, and line them up overlapping on a strip of puff pastry about an inch wide.

Carefully roll the puff pastry from one end to the other, to create a rose shape.

Place the roses in a baking pan with a little room between them.  Sprinkle with cinnamon sugar and bake for about 30 minutes, or until the puff pastry is lightly browned and puffed.

So there you have it!  Hopefully, The Hubby will get his recipes posted soon, because he made some wonderful things, but I hope that I have inspired you (and my sister!) to stop worrying, and embrace the cocktail weenie.

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  1. You certainly did find a ton of interesting things to do with a cocktail weenie. Great post! I am going to try the apple roses.

  2. Everything looks yummy! Love those pastry apple roses! Thanks for sharing!

  3. I Love the apple puff pastry roses. What temperature did you bake them at, and did you pre-grease the baking pan? Thanks in advance.

    1. 350 F, 10-15 minutes, and the pan was pre-greased. Lovely, aren't they? :)