We believe that New Year celebrations are all about trying new things. Let go of the old favourites, push the boundaries, and climb out of your cozy comfort zone. At the cookery school we've been having great fun coming up with new vegetarian and vegan recipes perfect for celebrations. (The office staff say that they enjoy our recipe testing days the best, and for good reason!)
Much of the fun with food surrounding New Year is in the good fortune traditions and special foods symbolizing good health, happiness and prosperity for the New Year. Fruit, vegetables, beans and grains feature strongly in these traditions:
A New Year’s Eve party might be the last indulgence before setting off on some New Year good intentions, such as going vegan with Veganuary or staying off the alcohol for dry January.
New Year’s Eve small eats have to sparkle and be novel food, an antidote to heavy rich Christmas food. Choose food to enliven your palate, curiously tasting food with interesting flavours that you haven’t tried before, quirky ideas to tickle your sense of humour and they must of course taste delicious too.
They also have to be filling enough to soak up the alcohol especially if you are just serving small eats and nibbles throughout the evening.
Just as important as the small eats are the drinks so make sure that they are vegetarian and vegan friendly.
Sparkling wine will be on the menu for sure and it is fun to flavour it up, this year we have gone for our favourite Italian tipple Aperol or you could add liquor such as cassis or raspberry or make a Bellini with peach puree. In Scotland Pictish ale flavoured with heather that was drunk in Neolithic times has been revived to drink on Hogmanay.
Make sure you have non-alcoholic drinks too. Our choice is mulled apple juice.
This year we're featuring our favourite recipes for small eats. They are more substantial than canapés and would be best served on small plates, as they are bigger than a mouthful.
We’ve gone for unusual flavours with liquid smoke to mimic smoked salmon in our carrot gravalax. Truffle oil in the celeriac puree and iridescent pickled cauliflower and quirky mini baked potatoes filled with indulgent chanterelles and topped with shavings of truffles.
Try them out at your New Year's Eve feast and let us know how they go down!
Delicious food photography by Rob Wicks of Eat Pictures.
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