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Step-By-Step New Year’s Eve Party Prep

First there was Thanksgiving. Then your annual holiday cocktail party, complete with hors d’oeuvres and finger foods galore. Now that Christmas dinner has come and gone, it’s time for New Year’s celebrations!

Think you have enough prepping, planning and cooking under your belt? Let us help you host a fantastic New Year’s Eve party that only looks—and tastes—like it took weeks to pull off.

The day before your party, follow our tips below to make sure everything is in order. Once the big day arrives, simply follow our step-by-step instructions and you’ll have a picture-perfect spread in less than two hours.

Day before party: Pre-order your Deli Slider Tray online before 2pm EST and set your pickup time.

Night before party: Determine how many serving platters, plates, sauce bowls and serving utensils you need. Arrange them on the table in the location you plan to serve each dish. This ensures you have enough space on your table and makes plating and serving simple.

Day of party: Print our shopping list (below) and head to The Fresh Market to pick up your party food.

Shopping list:

  • The Fresh Market Jumbo Cocktail Shrimp
  • The Fresh Market Cocktail Sauce
  • The Fresh Market Frozen Appetizers (Fig and Ginger Brie Rolls and Maple Dijon Franks)
  • Antipasto bar items
  • Deli Slider Tray
  • Fromage d’Affinois
  • Pistachios
  • Honey
  • The Fresh Market Cheese Straws
  • The Fresh Market Ultimate Lump Crab Cakes
  • Lemon
  • Fresh parsley
  • Bulk Seasonal Nuts
  • Mamie’s Cheese Wafers (find them in our frozen aisle)

Prep Steps for the Perfect Party (Total Time: 1.5 hours)

prep free party

  1. Remove Mamie’s Cheese Wafers from the freezer and place on cutting board to thaw slightly. Preheat oven to 350°F and line 2 non-stick sheet trays with parchment paper. Slice roll into 1/8-1/4-inch thick rounds, placing them onto the prepared sheet trays. Depending on thickness, you will have 25-40 wafers. Bake for 10-15 minutes (thicker wafers may require up to 3-5 minutes longer).

  2. While wafers bake, place nuts into their corresponding bowls. Slice the lemon into wedges and roughly chop the parsley. Wipe the board clean, then roughly chop the pistachios. Set all aside.

  3. Prepare the antipasto by arranging favorite items in a bowl or plate. When wafers are done, transfer to serving plate and increase oven temperature to 400°F. Keep parchment paper.

  4. While oven is preheating, remove sliders from tray and place them onto their corresponding platter with the sauce provided.

  5. Place the wedges of Fromage d'Affinois onto their plate. Drizzle with honey and top with chopped pistachios and place on the table. Place The Fresh Market Cheese Straws in their corresponding bowl.

  6. Arrange The Fresh Market Maple Dijon Franks on the parchment-lined sheet tray and place in oven on bottom rack. Set timer for 13 minutes.

  7. While franks bake, prepare the shrimp platter by filling a small bowl with cocktail sauce. Place in center of platter and arrange shrimp around it. Place The Fresh Market Fig and Ginger Brie Rolls onto another parchment-lined sheet tray. After franks have cooked for 13 minutes, place brie and ginger bites in the oven above the franks. Set timer for an additional 9 minutes.

  8. While both frozen appetizers bake, place a large non-stick skillet over medium high heat and add 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Add the crab cakes to skillet, flat-side down, lower heat to medium and use a spatula to gently flatten the cakes and cook 3-4 minutes. Peek at the appetizers to ensure they do not burn. Flip crab cakes and continue cooking the other side for another 3-4 minutes.

  9. The brie rolls, franks and the crab cakes will be done at roughly the same times. Remove franks and brie bites from oven and allow to cool, about 2-3 minutes. Fill a small bowl with whole grain Dijon mustard and place onto the serving platter along with franks. Place brie bites on serving platter. Plate the crab cakes and garnish with the chopped parsley and lemon wedges. You’re ready to party!