Pull Out All the Stops With This Decadent New Year's Eve Feast
New Year's Eve will be the grand finale of 2016, so it's the perfect occasion to go big. Put on your sparkliest holiday ensemble; wear that daring bold burgundy lipstick; invite that certain someone you've been hoping to spend more time with. And most definitely cook something fabulous.
The rest of the year, we tend to put an emphasis on easy or quick recipes—we're busy, after all! But now is the time to pull out all the stops with decadent dishes and a statement-making event. We turned to a handful of skilled bloggers and foodies to compile the perfect New Year's Eve fête—think a lavender and lemon champagne cocktail to kick off the evening, roasted beef tenderloin for the entrée, and jasmine tea white wine poached pears for dessert.
Make this complete menu, down to the sorbet palette cleanser, and you will most certainly impress.
Everyone expects to drink champagne on New Year's Eve, so I like to serve guests a bright champagne cocktail when they walk in the door to start things off on a festive foot. This lavender and lemon sparkler is made with lemon juice and zest and chilled champagne. It's elegant, not cloying. The perfect beginning for a sophisticated evening.
Gougères are a savory French pastry delicacy made of choux dough mixed with cheese, and once you pop one of these in your mouth, you just can't stop. This recipe is updated with pancetta, thyme, and fontina, making it absolutely irresistible.
Native to the Pacific Ocean, Dungeness crabs are currently in season, but not for long, so they're a real treat. If you don't live on the West Coast, you can have them shipped overnight for $20 a pound. Make harissa butter and lemon-garlic butter dips and you have yourself a totally indulgent little appetizer.
This apple fennel salad is made with mâche, a very delicate leaf that should be eaten immediately once dressed. It's special yet light and the perfect crisp starter for a heavier feast to come…
TOSS THOSE GREENS:
Serve a small scoop of lemon sorbet in small cups, coupes, or martini glasses as a palate cleanser between courses. It's a delightfully easy way to impress your guests.
Mashed potatoes are always a crowd-pleasing side, but this recipe, which uses gruyère, cheddar, and parmesan, really steps it up a notch. It's made in a crockpot, so put this on at noon, and it'll be ready when guests arrive.
This roasted beef tenderloin, seasoned with crushed peppercorn, kosher salt, and Dijon mustard, is succulent and juicy. Its pretty pink color is also undeniably festive. You'll want to go back for seconds (or thirds).
Finish the decadent feast on a high note with jasmine tea/white wine poached pears. They're given a grown-up twist with the addition of chardonnay, which balances the sweetness of the pears and tea with a hint of acidity. Plate them with edible flowers and drench in syrup for a photogenic dish guests will be talking about all night.