Adult birthday party, gastro pub, sliders, crab cakes, soft pretzels, candied bacon
For her Hubby’s 50th birthday, Elle wanted to showcase the handcrafted beer he makes. We decided on a gastro pub theme party with 3 types of sliders, homemade soft pretzels and candied bacon.  She created a personalized newspaper, featuring pictures and articles about her husband, as a table runner.

I love birthday parties, even if they aren’t my own.  When my dear friend and interior designer extraordinaire Elle (check out her blog here) asked me to work with her on her husband’s birthday celebration,  I was happy to be the chef and a guest.  Elle styled the party in black and white using chalkboard paper as a table cover.  If you use contact chalkboard  paper don’t remove the paper on the back if you don’t want the contact paper to stick to your table.

chalkboard contact paper, chalk board paper
Repositionable chalkboard contact paper makes a great table cover or a menu board on a wall
beer, craft beer
The birthday boy’s handcrafted beer was the centerpiece of the party

For the menu we decided that sliders would be the main event.  What goes better with beer than a hearty burger.  In addition to traditional beef sliders I made crab cake sliders and little roasted veggie hoagies as well, something for all tastes.  We did delicious snacks as well like sinful candied bacon and  homemade soft pretzels with sea salt.  The candied bacon was a big hit, and of course I used some of my own homemade house cured bacon coated with brown sugar, cayenne pepper and rosemary.

Salt pretzels, soft pretzels
Homemade sea salt soft pretzels, the perfect partner with craft beer
candied bacon, bacon, sweet
Sweet, smoky, spicy, salty candied BACON! So delicious

Buffalo chicken meatballs with hotwing sauce and bleu cheese was also on the menu.  This is a tasty dish for a party, especially during football season.  The birthday boy’s hand crafted beer was the perfect foil for the spicy sauce.  The recipe is below

buffalo chicken meatballs, meatballs, chicken
Buffalo chicken meatballs with crumbled bleu/blue cheese. Bake the sauce onto the meatballs for 5 minutes and the sauce wont be drippy
party forks, bamboo
I used bamboo party forks like these for the buffalo chicken meatballs. They are sturdier than toothpicks and look good too

Buffalo chicken meatballs for a party

Makes about 32- 1.5 ounce meatballs

1 small onion cut into fine dice (about ½ cup)1 garlic clove cut into fine dice2 tablespoons canola oil

3 pounds ground chicken (dark meat if possible)

3 egg whites

3/4 cup bread crumbs

1 teaspoon paprika

1 ½  teaspoon salt

¼ cup hot sauce

¼ cup butter

4 ounces of blue/bleu cheese

Heat oven to 400°Coat 2 rimmed sheet pans with canola oil.  Saute onions and garlic in canola oil until translucent. Cool to room temperature.Mix ground chicken, egg whites, bread crumbs, salt, paprika, sautéed onion and garlic.  Form into meatballs about 1 ½ inches in diameter

Place on an oiled sheet pan  and roast for about 20 minutes or until the meatballs reach an internal temperature of 165 °

In a separate saucepan mix hot sauce and butter heat to boiling then remove from heat.

Pour sauce over meatballs and bake 5 minutes.  Place on a serving tray with bamboo party forks and top with crumbled blue cheese