I’ve participated with Steven Gilberg and @WineTwits before when I’ve hosted combination wine tastings and tweetups that serve to get the word out about different wines; either by region or type. When I was asked to serve as a host for a ‘food’ event, how could I say no? I invited friends; made sure they had coupons for the featured product and we convened at my home for a fun night of chatting, laughter, food and Twitter. I’m lucky to be a part of a local blogger group I helped to get started this time last year and it’s sure nice to have a group of friends to invite that enjoy getting together and bringing a dish as much as I do. We had such fun and I hope you find something in this selection that you’ll want to make yourself. Hey…the cocktail at least!
We each had a recipe that had been developed by Chef Rick Rodgers who is known as America’s Thanksgiving expert and the author of the best-selling cookbook ‘Thanksgiving 101‘ as well as being a frequent contributor to Williams-Sonoma and Bon Appetit magazine. We used his recipes as a start and everyone had the liberty of following or making whatever changes they wanted. All that was required were raspberries.
Holiday Berry Bellini (click on titles for printable PDF of each recipe)
I did the cocktail (go figure) and we just loved it. How can you go wrong with St. Germain, Cava, raspberries and a bit of lime juice? SO good. The original recipe for this cocktail called for lemon juice but I had limes and truth is…I can’t imagine it any other way now. Not too sweet; just right.
Wild Rice Dressing with Raspberries and Carmelized Shallots
Andrea (www.forkfingerschopsticks.com) prepared this dish; I admit it was new to me to have fresh fruit with a rice dish but I loved it. Andrea also brought a dozen freshly made tamales; I begged and she stopped and picked some up. Now we all want to make some of our own (are you listening Karen?).
Roasted Acorn Squash with Raspberry Sauce
Donna prepared this gorgeous squash dish. Really…have you EVER thought of a raspberry sauce for squash? The sauce makes it visually pretty and gives your taste buds a treat too…not your mothers’ overly sweet squash.
Eggnog Panna Cotta with Raspberries and a Balsamic Vinegar Glaze
Karen (www.savourytable.com) brought us this amazing dessert. Both light and rich, it was a delicious finish to our meal. Not overly sweet, it was a just the perfect way to end our meal.
This was a fun experience; it certainly opened our eyes to just how versatile raspberries really are. My thanks to Driscolls for the berries and recipes; even more thanks to my friends for bringing the event to fruition…you are all THE BOMB!
Brie with Honeyed Raspberries and Almonds (pictured above)
My friend Jane (www.noplainjaneskitchen.com) was charged with the Brie and Raspberry appetizer but she had a last minute opportunity to see a relative coming through Denver International Airport and decided to head out there for a visit. She was kind enough to drop off her goodies and we managed to put the appetizer together in her absence. Jane has substituted almonds for the pistachios in the original recipe and they were so perfect I can’t imagine not having used them! This was something I will do again for a party…warm brie, fruit and nuts? Oh yes, my kind of appetizer.
- 1/2 cup (2 ounces) slivered almonds
- 1 wheel (13.3 ounces) ripe Brie, box reserved, top rind sliced off, cheese chilled
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1 tsp. balsamic vinegar
- 1/2 tsp. finely chopped fresh rosemary
- 1 package (6 ounces or 1 1/4 cups) Driscoll’s Raspberries
- Water crackers or baguette slices for serving
- Preheat the oven to 350?F.
- Spread the almonds on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake, stirring occasionally, until lightly toasted and fragrant, about 10 minutes. Transfer to a plate.
- Place Brie, in its box, on baking sheet. Bake until warm and the top is softened, but not until cheese is oozing, about 15 minutes.
- Remove all box/packaging and transfer cheese to serving platter.
- Stir honey, vinegar, and rosemary in a medium skillet over medium heat just until warm. Add raspberries and almonds and gently fold in with a rubber spatula.
- Pour raspberry mixture over warm cheese. Serve at once, with the crackers for spreading.
- We were all compensated by Driscolls for the cost of the berries. I received additional compensation for assisting the organizers with recruiting other hosts in the US. I was not compensated for this post and I hate the part where we are supposed to say something along the lines of ‘all thoughts are mine.’ Get real…do you know me? :)
- Thanks to Driscolls Berries for the photos of the squash and panna cotta.