Last week was Ben and I’s engagement party – and in my usual style I wanted to offer our guests healthy, delicious appetizers. To me this means yummy foods everyone can eat, and many friends in my camp don’t eat dairy or gluten this meant it was gonna be a gluten-free dairy-free party. Actually, my amazingly talented caterer friend donated us a beautiful cheese platter (Thanks Bill!), but beyond this we made everything as accommodating as possible (including another donation of sushi from my other friend whose father is a sushi chef).
I started with crudites that used cucumber slices and rice crackers instead of wheat crackers. This was topped by a roasted red pepper, onion and eggplant puree and finished off with roasted grape tomatoes.
Then we baked my famous black bean brownies (no flour!) and lemon tofu cheese cake, but my friend Linds had a great idea of making them in mini cupcake sizes instead of as a whole cake. I topped this with blueberries and lemon zest.
During this we made veggie kabobs – which was simply tofu and other veggies marinated in dairy-free (without Parmesan) pesto and baked for 20 minutes at 350 degrees Celsius.
I also made a garlicy-lemon hummus with italian parsley – and served it with red corn chips (okay, not gluten-free…but I think they are so pretty! And I did have extra rice crackers as an alternative. We also hired an excellent Bartender who made cucumber and mint mojitos, pink lemonade and vodka tumblers with fresh blueberries, and special plum cinnamon martinis which used an organic plum, cinnamon and hibiscus tea which I brewed and iced. They were such a vibrant, rich red color and naturally sweet!
I think everyone enjoyed the food because it was eaten up so fast. And of course, I had a great time (see me above having a belly laugh!). There were about 60-70 people at our place, and it got a little crazy – but I did feel like there was so much love in the air.
My friend Peter made a lovely toast, and we all cheersed with some bubbly. I want to thank Petey, Lindsey, Nai and Karen for helping me prepare for this whirlwind…and of course my fiance Ben. I hope this post inspires other to serve unusual, but scrumptious dairy-free, gluten-free, veggie hor d’oeuvres.