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  • Writer's pictureEgg Free Mama

How to Throw a Party...

Updated: Dec 17, 2018

...without ending the night with your little getting sick.

Let me tell you, the holiday season is my favourite. I mean, it's like three months in a row centred around food and loved ones. And the food. I mean, come on. Thanksgiving. Christmas. The month preceding Christmas, with parties every week. And, in our family we have an added holiday tradition...RavioliFest. It's a thing, I swear. Picture this, huge trays of amazing fresh made stuffed pasta lining the counters. There's pasta, there's tomato sauce, there's cheese. And garlic bread. A whole night of pasta-centred delicious party goodness.

Don't get me started on Italian Thanksgiving and Italian Christmas. Y'all, my in-laws eat lasagna with their turkeys. I mean, why the hell have we not thought of this combo? I think my life before marriage has been a total waste.

But I digress.

My absolute favourite tradition is one that has been happening since my husband and I first started living together. We call it "Veal and Tortiere." Basically it's what happens when an Italian man marries a Metis woman, and it's my favourite hybrid celebration of both our familial traditions. I make my grandmother's recipe for tortiere, and my hubby caters in a huge tray of veal parmesan and we line our counters with fancy cheese and other snacks and just open the door to our loved ones. They come and go all day, and our house is filled with people, and it is a good, good thing.

Except now. Suddenly Veal and Tortiere felt like a minefield, a recipe for disaster. My busy little roaming all over our small house while crumbs and cheese fall all over the floor where she would, without a doubt, deposit them directly into her mouth. Remember the last time she ate a mystery crumb from the floor and we had to call 911? Not exactly the recipe for party success. Even with our family and friends doing their best to keep the dangerous foods out of our little one's way, I knew we had to make some changes to keep her safe but still include her in the festivities. She is part of the tradition now, and we didn't want her sidelined. Our guests would have to adapt to her eating style. This is, after all, her turf.

So, here's what was on the menu:

To Start:

Zucchini and Roasted Cauliflower "Hummus"

Soaked Sunflower Seed Garlic Dip with Pomegranate Seeds

Queso-ish Dip (once again, the masters at Thug Kitchen. Buy their book)

Boozey Fruit Salad (and non-boozy version for the littles)

Coconut Milk Ricotta with Aged Olive Oil and Balsamic de Modena

TT's Black Olive Spread


Vegan Coconut Rum Cake

Vegan Strawberry Rhubarb Cake with Coconut Rum filling

Salted Chocolate Buckwheat Cookies

Vegan Puffed Rice Bites


Grandma's Tortiere with Vegan Crust (there's no picture! Can you believe it disappeared before I could get my camera out?? I'll make a new one this week and post with recipe)

....and a big old tray of Veal Parmesan (you can't win them all)

We served everything with huge piles of gorgeous veggies and piles of gluten-free chips. The veal was contained to one side of the kitchen (we did the best we could) and we placed packages of wipes on the tables for everyone to wipe their hands and faces before they handled our little Christmas bug. Guess what? Everyone was happy to help.

And the food. Lemme tell you. I think I have never been so proud of a party menu or so nervous about feeding my guests. My go-to of fancy cheese trays and good, crusty bread is kind of a fail-safe.

I can tell you that ALL the meat and cheese-eaters scarfed down everything with gusto. I also made a Spiced Vegan Hot Cocoa with a Spike Bar and Vegan Marshmallows and it was a major hit. Overall, the party was a success, the bellies were full, the drinks were poured and the best part of all, the baby was safe.

And she partied into the night.

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