The best part of setting the table for a gathering is when I get to be creative with my party platter. I have it sitting there, ready when guests start arriving so they can start picking on some colorful veggies and fruit… it warms everyone right up as they get in and start making conversation. I love how much fun it is to put together AND to eat of course!
I’m not the only one… this round up has some beautiful recipes from some crafty bloggers.
Tips for an irresistible party platter:
Keep it seasonal – You’ll find the freshest, most nutrient dense (not to mention more affordable) ingredients when you buy what’s in season. Refer to EWG’s dirty dozen to see what is best when organic.
Get colorful! – The more colors, the more nutritious AND beautiful your platter will be.
Be flexible – As will all entertaining, you’ll have to consider everyone’s eating preferences and allergies, the great thing about a plant-based platter is usually everyone can partake! When using cheese boards, keep a vegan cheese recipe up your sleeve if you’d like (which I have for you below!) and to side-step gluten sensitivities, my favorite cracker replacement are baked plantain chips that are so easy to make homemade and everyone loves them! Alternatively, any chips you make or buy will also be great. Instead of going all out and getting something for everyone, finding the common ground will be a money-saver and time-saver.
THE DIP – People love dip. FACT. Raw veggies are great and all, but they’re even better when they have an amazing dip to dunk with. Pick 1 or a few dips you love to make and place them where guests can get to them easily.
Location, Location, Location– Fight the urge to keep one of each veggie clumped together in one place. Mix them up for easier grabbing, it’s more visually appealing that way too!
Have fun! – Get inspired by these great ideas and have fun with it, the more you practice the more amazing your platters will get.
Pom Macadamia Nut Cheese // serves 10+
2 cups raw macadamia nuts
2 tsp fresh lemon juice
2 tsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 tsp nutritional yeast powder
1 tsp sea salt
1 cup pomegranate seeds
Soak nuts overnight in the fridge covered.
The next day, strain and rinse the nuts and add to a high power blender. Add all ingredients except for the pomegranate seeds, into the blender and mix on high for several minutes until smooth.
Line a ramekin with saran wrap and spoon in the cheese mixture, press it lightly so that it forms to the mold and cover. Refrigerate for a couple of hours.
When ready to serve, remove the plastic wrap and place the cheese on a serving dish.
With your hands, press pomegranate seeds onto the sides of the cheese.
Beet Hummus with Plantain Chips // serves 10+
2 medium sized beets
1 cup dried chickpeas
2 tsp baking soda (divided)
1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1/2 lemon, juiced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tsp salt
pinch sea salt
2 large green plantains
1 Tbsp liquid coconut oil
*toppings for hummus: Za’atar, paprika, extra-virgin olive oil and gomasio seeds
Soak chickpeas overnight for approx. 10 hrs by covering with water with an extra 2 inches to cover and with 1 tsp baking soda. Keep covered.
The next day, rinse the chickpeas in cold water and with a paper towel, rub the chickpeas so the skin peels off. This takes a few minutes and patience but is well worth it and I find it relaxing!
Once skins are off, return chickpeas to a pot, cover with water again with an additional 2 inches of water. Add in another 1 tsp of baking soda and 1 tsp salt.
Bring the water to a boil, then reduce to medium low and cook until tender when pierced with a fork (approx. 50-60 minutes) uncovered.
Meanwhile, cook the beets by scrubbing them well and wrapping in tin foil. Roast at 400f degrees for an hour until tender. Scrub skin off when done cooking and chop into a few pieces, set aside. Keep the oven on for plantain chips.
Prep a baking sheet with parchment paper. Peel the green plantains by carefully cutting into the skin of the plantain and peeling by hand. Cut in half.
Using a mandolin or slicer, sliced green plantains to a thin chip-like setting and toss with coconut oil and lay flat in a single layer on the parchment lined baking sheet. Add just a pinch of sea salt over top.
Bake chips for approx. 15-20 minutes, mixing them up half-way through. Be careful not to burn them!
Back to the hummus – When ready, drain chickpeas well and add to a food processor with all ingredients (except for plantains!). Set aside.
Serve the chips and hummus together!
With so many amazing party platters and dips around, here is some more inspiration!