I am thoroughly done with caring about going out on New Year’s Eve. I had plenty of fun for many years and now all I want to do is stay home. But I still like feasting in a celebratory way—one final hurrah before the chill of January’s fitness resolutions sets in. Over the years, we’ve assembled quite a roster of indulgent special occasion dishes here on butter poached, so I thought I’d do a round-up of some favorites that are definitely worthy of a spot on the table for a fancy New Year’s Eve meal. Happy 2017!
Spinach Gruyère Dip: hot dips warm hearts, especially this one, which is built on a foundation of mayo, three cheeses, and loads of spinach.
Mustard and Gruyère Batons: puff pastry sticks with sharp mustard and nutty cheese that will surely ruin your appetite for anything else you might be eating on New Year’s.
Braised Short Ribs: Jessica shared a relatively fast (3 hours) braised short rib recipe here and I raved about the braised short ribs from the Smitten Kitchen Cookbook here (no recipe included…get the book!). Braising short ribs is low-stress and high reward. I made the Smitten short ribs for Christmas this year (served over mashed potatoes) and I was once again blown away by how easy, delicious, and special they are.
Turkey Sausage and Goat Cheese Lasagna: this remains the most flavorful lasagna I’ve ever made. Creamy, tangy, and hearty, I almost always make this at least once around the holidays. If I have time to spare, I make homemade ricotta for the filling.
Shrimp Scampi: a classic dish that packs a lot of wow in the form of butter and garlic. It’s simple to make (and can be prepped ahead of time) and is sure to impress.
Shrimp and Grits: because maybe you want a shrimp dish that involves sausage and a mound of carbs. Gotta fill up before January, after all.
Steamed Clams with Chorizo: steaming seafood at home will always seem fancy to me, and any dish that invites dunking fresh bread into savory juices is a party in my book.
Desserts (i.e., three of our best chocolate recipes)
Pots de Creme: make-ahead chocolate coupes of indulgence. The hardest part will be deciding which pretty glasses to use.
Molten Lava Cakes: a favorite of the 1990’s, but still a gooey, over-the-top showstopper when presented from a home kitchen.
Chocolate Cake: what could be more celebratory that a two-layer chocolate-on-chocolate cake? Nothing. Except maybe chocolate cupcakes.