With the holiday season in full swing, we invited E&M Culinary, Events & Creative back to design a delectable Christmas spread fit with colorful cocktails and inventive variations on traditional bites.
“Our chefs love the culinary arts,” says Andy Cohen, managing partner at E&M. “We can put some fun spins on it.”
The company is busy with everything from large corporate events to intimate, chef-prepared meals at home. With more than 200 items on its menu, it can cater to all sorts of tastes and preferences, including vegan and vegetarian dishes. For Boca magazine’s Christmas spread, the E&M team created braised short rib and Stilton puffs, beef Wellingtons and torched brie tartlets. For dessert, a whimsical yule log stole the show.
This setup is ideal for home holiday parties, Cohen notes, as it provides food that is small
in size but filling. By serving it cocktail style, it keeps the social atmosphere of the party alive.
A fun twist at the bar for parties? Make a signature cocktail, Cohen suggests, which can be attained by reimagining an already popular drink. For our shoot, E&M’s bartender made an orange rosemary Champagne cocktail, a white Russian, a grasshopper and a cranberry mule.
We’re definitely ready for our next soirée!
- 2 ounces vodka
- ½ ounce of cranberry simple syrup
- ½ ounce of lime juice
- 3 ounces ginger beer
- 3 crystalized cranberries
Cranberry Simple Syrup
- Mix 4 ounces of cranberry juice, 4 ounces of water, 8 ounces of sugar and a splash of vanilla
- Combine all ingredients, bring to a boil.
- Remove from heat, allow to cool.
- 8 ounces of sugar, divided into two sections, and 4 ounces of water
- Combine 4 ounces of sugar with 4 ounces of water in a saucepan. Cook until sugar is dissolved. Stir in cranberries until well coated. Using either a slotted spoon or strainer, drain liquid from cranberries.
- Working in small amounts, roll cranberries in remaining granulated sugar until well coated. Let dry for minimum one hour.
To make cocktail:
- Combine vodka, cranberry simple syrup and lime juice over ice
- Top with ginger beer
- Garnish with crystalized cranberries
Mini Beef Wellington with Green Peppercorn Sauce
Green Peppercorn Sauce:
- 2 ounces onions
- 1 ounce garlic
- 1 ounce brandy
- 10 ounces demi glace
- 1½ green peppercorn
- Sweat onions and garlic in pan.
- Deglaze with brandy.
- Add peppercorns and demi glace, simmer until consistency of a thin gravy.
- Add salt and pepper to taste.
- 1 ounce oil
- ½ an onion, dicely small
- 12 ounce crimini mushroom, chopped
- 3 ounces garlic, minced
- 3 sprigs Rosemary, chopped
- 8 ounces sherry
- In pan, heat oil, add onion and brown.
- Add mushrooms, rosemary, salt and pepper
- Cook until softened, deglaze with sherry.
- Reduce heat, simmer until the majority of the liquid is gone.
- In a food processor: pulse filling
- Spread out onto tray and allow to cool.
- Clean tenderloin, portion into 12, 1-ounce cubes. Season well with salt and pepper.
- Lightly sear all cubes on side, leaving meat at rare.
- For ease, you may purchase puff pastry from your local grocery store.
- Cut Puff pastry into 2” x2” square.
- Place tenderloin raw side down in center of pastry.
- Spoon duxelle on top of tenderloin.
- Fold all 4 edges up to seal.
- Assemble onto baking sheet, freeze
- Preheat oven to 400ºF.
- Egg wash each mini Wellington
- Bake until golden brown.
- Assemble mini wellingtons onto platter.
- Heat peppercorn sauce and drizzle.