My friends and I have a festive New Year’s Eve tradition. Reluctant to brave the December 31st fray, we wanted to create our own celebration. And once we found that lobster tails were on sale at the grocery, the deal was done. We’d ring in the New Year at my home.
Each year, I prepare a huge stockpot filled with lemons, white wine, herbs and spices. My friends bring their own lobster tails ready to take the savory plunge.
We toss a big bowl of pasta, compose a salad with grapefruit and avocado, and whip up some rich chocolate puddings for dessert, you can find the menu below. Dinner is served in courses at a relaxed pace—a wonderful way to toast the New Year!
New Year’s Dinner Party Tips
- Make the pots de crème the day before the party. Chilling in individual ramekins, they’ll just need a dollop of whipped cream and a garnish of fresh berries at serving time.
- Prep all the salad elements, including the vinaigrette, in the afternoon and refrigerate. Chill the salad plates, too. This course is ready to assemble and dress.
- The afternoon is the perfect time to prepare the poaching bath and butter sauce for the lobster tails.
- Before guests arrive, caramelize the shallots and prepare the first two steps of the pasta recipe. Have the arugula, bread bits and cheese ready to fold in when reheating the linguine just before serving.
- Poach the lobster tails while you finish the pasta. Turn off the heat; the tails will remain warm and tender in the savory bath.
—By Nancy Vienneau, a food writer in Nashville, Tenn.