New year nibbles

Christmas may have passed, but for most of us it’s not yet time to put down the whisks and sieves to sit back and plan how we’re going to lose this festive flab. But before we have cause to mourn the foods that a January diet disallows, there’s still one last night of blissful indulgence to go. But by the time new year rolls around, no-one wants to cook a full spread. Just a few little bites to keep guests from partying a little too hard. So here’s a few easy-to-whip-up recipes for new year party nibbles.

Rice Krispie cakes (above)

My mother was cursed blessed with three quite awkward children, a fact which is spectacularly clear around this time of year. One doesn’t like Christmas pudding, another doesn’t like sponge, and I don’t like chocolate flavoured desserts (strange, I know). All that this means is that no-bake Rice Krispie cake is a staple in our house, whether it’s made in round tins and stacked like a birthday cake or cut into bite size squares.

Ingredients: equal weights marshmallows, toffees, butter, Rice Krispies.
E.G. 100g each.

Method: Melt together marshmallows, toffees, and butter. This can be done in the microwave using a large microwavable bowl, or on the hob in a large saucepan. The mixture will grow as the marshmallow melts, and I find it easier to keep an eye on this when cooking it in a saucepan. Stir in the Rice Krispies, pour into a lined tin or lipped baking tray and smooth using the back of a spoon. Refrigerate.

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Mango cocktail sausages

Ingredients: 1 pack cocktail sausages, 1 jar mango chutney.

Method: Place cocktail sausages on a greaseproof-lined baking tray, and cook for 10 minutes at about 160C. Remove from oven, and coat with mango chutney, using a tablespoon or two of water to thin the chutney. Cook for a further 10 minutes. Serve as-is or on cocktail sticks to avoid sticky fingers!

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web2Stuffing bites

Makes 9 ramekins/18 bites

Ingredients: 180g stuffing mix, 9 rashers bacon (smoked or unsmoked), any fillings of your choosing.

Method: Line ramekins (about 1.5 inches tall, 3.5 inches across) with foil, leaving enough over the sides to fold over the top when full. Line this with bacon, with the “upper” part of the rasher hanging over. Create your stuffing mix, adding any extra fillings, according to instructions, and divide between the ramekins. Fold the bacon over the top, and scrunch the overhanging foil over to cover it all. Cook at 160C for 20 minutes and switch off the oven. Fold out the foil, and put in the oven for a further 10-15
minutes to allow the bacon to crisp up. Allow to cool, and slice in half.

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Two-cheese biscuits

Got some cheese and nuts left ever from Christmas? Why not make these two-cheese biscuits?

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Happy New Year, everyone!