Zaalouk – Moroccan Roasted Eggplants and Tomatoes;
Kabis – Lebanese Pickled Turnips and Beets;
Moroccan inspired Radish, Bell Peppers and Mint Salad;
Flash Fried Sweet Mini Bell Peppers.
Greek inspired Shrimp with Tomatoes and Feta;
Hummus with Spiced Angus Beef Slices;
Beef Kafta – Lebanese inspired Meatballs.
Labneh – Lebanese Drained Yogurt Drizzled With Extra Virgin Olive Oil And Clover Honey;
Moroccan inspired Roasted Green Bell Peppers and Tomatoes With Olives;
Fresh Figs With Peppered Ricotta.
I love the year-end festive period, the anticipation of good food and company, planning party menus and deciding how best to dress the house, dining table and chairs. There is the dinnerware to consider, working out how best to plate the food, where to set the food, flowers to buy… I can even visualise the festive produce on shelves that you only see during this time of the year. The frozen turkeys, mince pies, panettones, Christmas logs, … all start to make a come back. It isn’t too early to start planning your year end party menus and mezes, small bites, are what I suggest. A good spread of mostly savoury dishes are laid out. The dining is casual and relaxed. Guests eat how much of whatever they want, when they want. There will be enough of a selection of meze to keep everyone happily indulged. It is not uncommon to serve just a spread of meze with drinks of your choice and totally skip a main course.
The cooking is done ahead so once all the meze is set on the table, you can sit through the entire meal with you guests and there should not be a need to excuse yourselves to prepare more food. That’s my kind of entertaining. Relaxed and almost fuss free. As year end parties tend to gear towards more elaborate meals and a larger number of guests, save your sanity and set out some meze before hand! You don’t want guests with hungry looks milling in your kitchen space when you are trying to get food out.
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