Cambodian Pomelo Salad with Prawns Recipe. Creative Cambodian Canapés, Siem Reap, Cambodia. Best New Years Eve Recipes. Copyright © 2022 Terence Carter / Grantourismo. All Rights Reserved.

Best New Years Eve Recipes for Homemade Dips, Crisps, Finger Food, Snacks and More

This post may contain paid links. If you make a purchase through links on our site, we may earn a commission.

Our best New Years Eve recipes will make you everything from homemade dips, crisps and crackers to delicious finger food, elegant takes on old-fashioned hors d’oeuvres, tasty snacks, and more solid dishes to soak up the liquor. This compilation of New Years Eve party food ideas for 2022 features loads of new recipes since last year’s collection, along with some old favourites.

As I’ve compiled this round-up of our best New Years Eve recipes I’ve been conscious of the fact that for many of you it might be the first New Year’s Eve you’ve spent with friends since the pandemic, but also that, due to rising Covid cases in so many countries, some of you might be enjoying a more intimate New Year’s Eve celebration with loved-ones than you’d hoped.

We wish you a healthy and Happy New Year wherever you are and however you’re celebrating it and we thank you once again for your support in 2022. Stay safe out there!

Happy New Year!
Lara & Terence xx

P.S. Before I tell you about our best New Years Eve recipes, I have a favour to ask…

Grantourismo is reader-funded. If you’ve cooked our recipes and enjoyed them, please consider supporting Grantourismo by supporting our epic Cambodian cuisine history and cookbook on Patreon, which you can do for as little as the price of a coffee. Or you could buy us a coffee and we’ll use our coffee money to buy cooking ingredients for recipe testing.

Another option is to use links on our site to buy travel insurance, rent a car or campervan or motorhome, book accommodation, or book a tour on Klook or Get Your Guide. Or buy something on Amazon, such as these cookbooks for culinary travellers, James Beard award-winning cookbooks, cookbooks by Australian chefs, classic cookbooks for serious cooks, travel books to inspire wanderlust, and gifts for Asian food lovers and picnic lovers. We may earn a small commission but you won’t pay any extra.

Now, let’s share our best Best New Years Eve recipes including recipes for homemade dips, crisps, finger food, snacks, and more, so you can start prepping.

Best New Years Eve Recipes for Homemade Dips, Crisps, Finger Food, Snacks and More


Homemade Pita Chips Recipe for Crunchy Baked Pita Crisps

This quick and easy homemade pita chips recipe will make you super crunchy baked pita crisps that are made within minutes, making it one of our best New Years Eve recipes. They’re perfect for scooping up dips such a hummus, baba ghanoush, guacamole, and salsas, or using in the Arabic salad fattoush. They’re also versatile – brush them with olive oil flavoured with spices or herbs to complement any dip.

Easy Homemade Pita Chips Recipe for Crunchy Baked Pita Crisps Made in Minutes

Homemade Traditional Hummus

This easy authentic hummus recipe makes a homemade traditional creamy hummus that a Lebanese friend taught Terence when we lived in Abu Dhabi in the late Nineties and it’s another one of our best New Years Eve recipes. Like our tapenade and smoked salmon dip, this recipe makes a hummus that beats a store-bought hummus any day. If you have a can of chick peas in the cupboard, hummus is one of the best dip recipes for pairing with crackers and crudités.

Easy Authentic Hummus Recipe for a Creamy Homemade Traditional Hummus

Authentic Baba Ganoush Recipe

Our authentic baba ganoush recipe will make you the traditional Middle Eastern eggplant dip – also spelt baba ghanoush, baba ghanouj and baba ganouj – that’s eaten with flatbread as one of an array of Arabic mezze or appetisers. Made with smoky grilled eggplants, tahini, lemon juice, garlic and olive oil, it’s super easy to make and tastes better homemade.

Authentic Baba Ganoush Recipe for the Traditional Middle Eastern Eggplant Dip

Creamy Smoked Salmon Dip Recipe

This creamy smoked salmon dip recipe is made with cream cheese, tangy sour cream, salty capers, dill pickles, purple shallots, a pinch of paprika, and plenty of fresh perfumed dill and it’s another one of our best New Years Eve recipes. This recipe beats a store-bought dip any day. While it might cost you a bit more to make, nothing tops homemade and you’ll taste the difference in the fresh herbs and proper salmon.

Creamy Smoked Salmon Dip Recipe with Salty Capers, Dill Pickles, Paprika and Fresh Dill

Easy Butter Bean Dip Recipe

Our easy butter bean dip recipe makes a creamy hummus-like Mediterranean dip flavoured with garlic, onion, cumin, and lemon. A little Greek yoghurt gives this creamy white bean dip an even creamier consistency, while fresh lemon juice adds tang, and cumin brings subtle spice. Finished with extra virgin olive oil and a sprinkle of smoky paprika, it’s fantastic with crispy pita chips and crudités, and is easily another of our top New Years Eve recipes.

Easy Butter Bean Dip Recipe for a Creamy Hummus Style Dip with Crispy Pita Chips and Crudités

Easy Cheese Straws Recipe

Our easy cheese straws recipe is one of our best New Years Eve recipes. This recipe makes grissini style cheese sticks that are perfect for your charcuterie boards and cheese plates. Or simply serve them with a homemade olive tapenade or dish of olives, a chilled bottle of crisp white or spritzes or negronis, and you’ve got some very enjoyable New Years Eve drinks snacks right there.

Easy Cheese Straws Recipe for Your Cocktail Nibbles, Charcuterie Boards and Cheese Plates

Authentic Olive Tapenade Recipe

This easy olive tapenade recipe is another one of our best Best New Years Eve recipes. This recipe is based on the traditional French tapenade recipe from Provence in southern France that’s made with only four ingredients – juicy Kalamata olives, briny capers, salted anchovies, and extra virgin olive oil. You could add garlic, herbs and spices, but this Mediterranean olive dip is absolutely delicious in its original form, eaten on fresh or toasted baguette slices, pinchos or crostini.

Easy Olive Tapenade Recipe for the Traditional French Tapenade Recipe with Only 4 Ingredients


Homemade French Onion Dip Recipe

Make this homemade French onion dip recipe for a rich, creamy caramelised onion dip that will take you back in time to the dips you helped your mum make for backyard barbecues by stirring French onion soup mix into cream cheese or sour cream. Made from scratch, this onion dip recipe makes an even more delicious dip and is worth the little extra effort.

Homemade French Onion Dip Recipe for a Rich Caramelised Onion Dip from Scratch and a Trip Back in Time

Crunchy Sourdough Crackers

If you’re a sourdough baker, then these next two recipes are for you. This sourdough starter discard crackers recipe makes a crispy cracker that’s a little salty, a tad spicy, a tiny bit tangy, and utterly addictive. Triangular in shape, they’re perfect for scooping up dips and they’re probably the easiest crackers you’ll ever make, so should inspire you to test out more sourdough starter discard recipes.

Sourdough Starter Discard Crackers Recipe – The Easiest Crispiest Crackers You’ll Ever Make

Sichuan-Inspired Eggplant Dip

This delicious eggplant dip recipe takes a classic Sichuanese braised eggplant dish and transforms it into an amazing dip. It’s another of our best dip recipes for crackers and crudités and another of our best Best New Years Eve recipes. You could also serve it as a starter before settling down to a full meal. It’s fantastic with our spicy Sichuan flavoured sourdough crackers, above, which were literally made for this dip.

Delicious Eggplant Dip Recipe Inspired by the Classic Sichuan Braised Eggplant Dish

Spicy Sichuan Inspired Sourdough Crackers

This spicy Sichuan sourdough crackers recipe made with sourdough starter discard and Sichuan peppers makes a cracker that’s delightfully hot and numbing and incredibly moreish. Roughly shaped like a homemade corn chip, these crackers are perfect for eggplant dips such as baba ghanouj and mutabal, as well as hummus or muhammara, not to mention the dips from Thailand and Cambodia, above.

Spicy Sichuan Inspired Sourdough Crackers Recipe Made With Starter Discard and Sichuan Peppers

Russian Eggplant Caviar Called Ikra

Our easy Russian eggplant caviar recipe makes ikra, known as the ‘poor man’s caviar’ during the Soviet period. This is a deliciously-rich version of this traditional Russian dip, spread or side dish that’s somewhere in between the ikra my baboushka made that was sumptuous and velvety and the ikra popularised during the Soviet era that more closely resembled a diced salad. It’s another one of our best Best New Years Eve recipes. While it’s fab with the crackers, above, it can also be eaten with baguette slices.

Easy Russian Eggplant Caviar Recipe for Ikra, the Soviet Union’s Poor Man’s Caviar

Russian Devilled Eggs Recipe

This Russian devilled eggs recipe will make you a Russian retro-classic which, like chicken Kiev and beef Stroganoff, spread like wildfire around the world, featuring on formica trays of hors d’oeuvres at every swinging soirée from Sydney to San Francisco in the 1960s and 1970s and it’s easily another of our best New Years Eve recipes. See Terence’s guide to boiling eggs if you need help in that area. You could pipe the mix into the egg white using a piping bag, but unless you dice your gherkins and purple shallots super-finely, which you should anyway, the mix will get stuck in the bag. Disguise the lack of piping with more fresh dill.

Russian Devilled Eggs Recipe for a Zakuski Table Fit for a Russian Tzar


Devilled Eggs with Smoked Salmon and Caviar Recipe

My devilled eggs with smoked salmon and caviar recipe makes a particularly luxurious take on my zesty Russian devilled eggs recipe, above, and they’re the ultimate elegant cocktail party canapés or a luxurious treat to savour with sparkling. We usually snacked on these devilled eggs with smoked salmon and caviar as we sip glasses of bubbly and watch the New Year’s Eve fireworks in Sydney on TV. It’s a delicious indulgence after years of living frugally in this seemingly never-ending pandemic hell.

Devilled Eggs with Smoked Salmon and Caviar Recipe for Elegant Cocktail Party Canapés


Blini with Smoked Salmon, Dill and Sour Cream Recipe

This Russian buckwheat pancakes recipe makes blini with smoked salmon, dill, sour cream, and a ‘caviar’ of gherkin and radish. More like pikelets than pancakes, these cocktail size blini are perfect for entertaining. While I’m using a ‘caviar’ of gherkin and radish inspired by the Russian dish ikra, you can use proper caviar. These are blini for those of us currently on a Prosecco rather than a Champagne budget!

Russian Buckwheat Pancakes Recipe for Blini with Smoked Salmon, Dill and Sour Cream


Classic Prawn Cocktail Recipe

This classic prawn cocktail recipe makes my take on the retro appetiser popularised in the 1970s that will never go out of style and it’s another one of our best New Years Eve recipes. Tiger prawns boiled quickly in their shells so they’re just done are peeled, tossed in a creamy tangy seafood sauce, and served on a bed of lettuce salad, dressed with the same sauce. For the seafood sauce, use a good quality tomato sauce (ketchup) and mayonnaise – or make your own. A good drizzle of lime or lemon juice before digging in really makes a prawn cocktail for me.

Classic Prawn Cocktail Recipe for the Retro Seventies Starter that Never Goes Out of Style


Khmer Raw Fish Salad Recipe for Cambodian Style Ceviche

This traditional Khmer raw fish salad recipe for phlea trei makes a wonderful, light, refreshing, and fragrant fish dish that is Cambodia’s ceviche. It’s one of my favourite  Cambodian recipes, one of our best salmon recipes, and one of our best Best New Years Eve recipes. The Khmer word trei, also written as trey, means fish, and phlea – also written as phlear, plear, ph’lea, and plea – is a type of raw salad where the fish or meat is generally ‘cooked’ in citrus juice. It’s usually made with a local firm white fish ‘cooked’ in citrus juice, but we use salmon for this dish.

Traditional Khmer Raw Fish Salad Recipe for the Cambodian Style Ceviche Called Phlea Trei


Smoked Salmon Carpaccio Recipe

Our smoked salmon carpaccio recipe will make you a simple but gorgeous-looking appetizer that can be made in minutes, making it another of our best New Years Eve recipes. Make the dish ahead by assembling the salmon, capers and pickled onions, then refrigerating the dish, and pouring on the dressing just before serving. Serve it sharing-style and provide small plates and a basket of toasted baguette slices and dishes with additional capers, pickled shallots and fresh dill, and small jugs of dressing, so guests can customise their own carpaccio.

Easy Smoked Salmon Carpaccio Recipe for an Elegant Appetiser Made in Minutes


DIY Russian Mimosa Salad Recipe

My Russian mimosa salad recipe is presented a little differently to the layered salad recipe you might recall your parents or grandparents serving in a big glass bowl – almost like a savoury trifle – or as a kitschy salad cake in the 1970s. This more elegant version is easily another of our best Best New Years Eve recipes. While you could certainly serve this Russian mimosa salad recipe in a big glass with a spoon, I like to provide wooden bowls and an array of condiments and encourage guests to upend the glass of salad into the bowl and add condiments and adjust the seasoning to their liking.

Russian Mimosa Salad Recipe for the Soviet Union’s Festive Layered Spring Salad


Thai Miang Kham Recipe

After biting into these Thai miang kham and getting the explosion of flavours in their mouth that are quintessentially Southeast Asian – lime, ginger, coconut, chilli, peanuts, shallots, palm sugar, and dried shrimp, all wrapped up in a wild betel leaf or wild piper leaf – your guests won’t forget the food at your soiree, making this one of our best New Years Eve recipes. While our recipe won’t make you the luxurious takes on miang kham topped with sweet lobster or plump prawns, salmon roe that bursts in your mouth, or even velvety foie gras which you’ll find at fancy fine dining restaurants in Bangkok, this is a versatile recipe which you can easily up-style if you wish.

Thai Miang Kham Recipe for The Bite Sized Wraps That Are Thailand in a Mouthful


Cambodian Pomelo Salad with Prawns

This Cambodian pomelo salad with prawns recipe makes a traditional dish that we’ve presented here in a more contemporary style as finger food and and it’s another of our best Best New Years Eve recipes.  For our contemporary presentation, we essentially deconstructed the salad, spiking a toothpick through the prawn, a leaf of fresh mint, and the segment of pomelo (on the bottom). We then ground the dried shrimp and sprinkled that, along with grated coconut and peanuts over the individual portions.

Cambodian Pomelo Salad with Prawns Recipe – Traditional Dish, Modern Presentation


Beef Lok Lak Recipe for Cambodian Pepper Beef

This modern beef lok lak recipe delivers a delicious traditional Cambodian pepper beef dish, made with Kampot Pepper, presented in a more elegant contemporary form than the traditional dish. This local favourite was one of the inspirations for our creative Cambodian canapés that Terence and I created for a New Year’s Eve spread some years ago. While the presentation of this dish is modern, the recipe itself is for an authentic traditional Cambodian dish.

Beef Lok Lak Recipe for Cambodian Pepper Beef, A Modern Take on a Traditional Dish


Authentic Mexican Guacamole

This authentic Mexican guacamole recipe makes a genuine Mexican guacamole that’s made table-side at good restaurants in Mexico. It’s all about the creamy luscious texture, bright green colour and full flavour of perfectly ripe avocados. It’s easily one of the best dip recipes for parties, and while it could be served with crackers and crudités, I recommend you try your hand at baking homemade tortilla chips or plain store-bought corn chips if you have time.

Authentic Mexican Guacamole Recipe Just Like Your Mexican Abuela Would Make


Easy Mexican Tomato Salsa

This easy red tomato salsa recipe makes a spicy Mexican salsa that we’ve been perfecting since we returned from our first big trip to Mexico and the USA way back when we first began travelling. Like the guacamole, it’s great with tortilla chips or corn chips, but it’s also another one of our best dip recipes for crackers and crudités, and it’s another one of our best Best New Years Eve recipes.

Easy Red Tomato Salsa Recipe – How to Make Homemade Spicy Tomato Salsa


Chilli Con Carne Dip

While this chilli con carne recipe makes a good old bowl of chilli for those who like their chilli hot and smoky, this chilli con carne is also terrific eaten cold as a dip with homemade tortilla chips or corn chips. You’ll need to put this on the stove the morning before your party, as it takes a few hours, but not a lot of work, to make, and is another of our best Best New Years Eve recipes.

Chilli Con Carne Recipe For Those Who Like Their Chilli Hot and Smoky


Chili Con Carne and Cheese Quesadillas

Like cold pizza, these chilli con carne and cheese quesadillas taste just as delicious cold or even luke warm, if you keep them warm until you’re ready to eat. This is easily another one of our best Best New Years Eve recipes if you’re looking for solid dishes for soaking up booze. And they’re super easy to make after you’ve done all the hard work preparing the chilli con carne and our red tomato salsa recipe (recipes for both above).

Chili Con Carne and Cheese Quesadillas Recipe for an Easy Mexican Brunch or Lunch


Crispy Chicken Skins with Spicy Chicken Mince Dip

This crispy chicken skins with spicy chicken mince recipe makes a fantastic snack for drinks or a Southeast Asian themed dinner party and it’s another one of our best Best New Years Eve recipes. When the chicken skins firm up in the oven, they form a perfect ‘crisp’ and an excellent vehicle for this classic minced dip found in Cambodia and Thailand.

Perfect Crispy Chicken Skins with Spicy Chicken Mince Recipe for an Addictive Southeast Asian Snack


Cambodian Coconut Minced Pork Dip

Cambodia’s delicious prahok k’tis dip is eaten with a combination of crunchy raw vegetables and blanched or steamed vegetables. If you’re not a fan of funky flavours like fish sauce and shrimp paste, you might want to leave the prahok (fermented fish) out. If you do want to try the prahok, head to your nearest Asian supermarket. If using this ingredient for the first time, perhaps reduce the amount of prahok.

Authentic Khmer Prahok Ktis Recipe for Cambodia’s Pork and Coconut Milk Dip


Cambodian Pork Coconut and Peanut Dip with Crispy Rice Cakes

This recipe for natang makes a Cambodian dip of minced pork, coconut cream and peanuts that’s made to be eaten with homemade crispy rice cakes, which in turn are intended to use up the rice that sticks to the bottom of a pot or any leftover rice, however, you can use store-bought rice cakes. This is another one of our best dip recipes for festive parties and social gatherings, especially if you want to serve something a little different.

Natang Recipe for a Cambodian Pork Coconut and Peanut Dip with Crispy Rice Cakes


Thai Rice Cakes with Chilli Prawn and Pork Dip

This Thai khao tang na tang rice cakes with chilli prawn and pork dip recipe makes a popular Thai snack or starter of homemade crispy rice crackers used to scoop up this creamy, slightly sweet, a little salty, and gently-spiced dip. A cousin of the Cambodian dip, above, it’s typically served with rice cakes but would also work with crackers and it’s another one of our best Best New Years Eve recipes.

Thai Khao Tang Na Tang Rice Cakes with Chilli Prawn and Pork Dip Recipe


Thai Nam Prik Ong

This Thai nam prik ong recipe makes a spicy pork and tomato dip from Northern Thailand. Served with fresh or steamed vegetables or sticky rice, which you dip into the bowl, nam prik ong is the most approachable of the Thai relishes and dips, not being as pungent or fiery as some. It’s another of our best Best New Years Eve recipes for fans of spicy food, although this is gently spiced.

Tasty Thai Nam Prik Ong Recipe for a Spicy Pork and Tomato Dip from Northern Thailand


Thai Nam Prik Num

This Thai nam prik num recipe makes a smoky green chilli dip that’s one of the best known Northern Thai specialties – so much so that it’s often called Chiang Mai chilli relish. Made from local chillies, it’s grilled on a barbecue with garlic and shallots and typically served with crunchy pork crackling and sticky rice, but could also be paired with crackers. It’s easily one of the best dip recipes to make if you have spice loving friends.

Thai Nam Prik Num Recipe for Smoky Green Chilli Dip from Northern Thailand


Spicy Chicken Lettuce Wraps

This spicy chicken lettuce wraps recipe makes a Southeast Asian take on the Chinese lettuce cups from Southern China and Hong Kong, popularised in Chinese-Australian restaurants. Our minced chicken lettuce cups take inspiration from northern Southeast Asia, from both savoury larbs (minced meat salads) and the local custom of wrapping street food snacks in lettuce. Light yet filling, this is perfect finger food for your New Years Eve soiree.

Spicy Chicken Lettuce Wraps Recipe for a Southeast Asian Take on San Choi Bao


Vietnamese Fresh Prawn and Pork Spring Rolls

This Vietnamese fresh prawn and pork spring rolls recipe is a classic recipe for traditional gỏi cuốn – which is a cold spring roll of cold cooked prawns, unseasoned pork belly, cold vermicelli noodles, and fresh aromatic herbs, wrapped in damp dry rice paper sheets. They’re light, zingy and refreshing and make for excellent appetisers for your New Years Eve soiree.

Vietnamese Fresh Prawn and Pork Spring Rolls Recipe for Classic Gỏi Cuốn


Vietnamese Pineapple Omelette and Prawn Summer Rolls

This Vietnamese pineapple omelette and prawn summer rolls recipe makes the fresh spring rolls found in tropical Southern Vietnam, the Mekong Delta and Southern Cambodia that can be served as filling finger food for your New Years Eve soiree.

Vietnamese Pineapple Omelette and Prawn Summer Rolls Recipe


Cambodian Fried Spring Rolls

This classic Cambodian fried spring rolls recipe makes a crunchy deep-fried egg roll filled with minced pork, dried shrimp, carrot, garlic, and daikon radish or taro, seasoned with fish sauce, Kampot pepper, sea salt, and palm sugar. We also have a Cambodian fried spring roll dipping sauce recipe to go with it, below.

Cambodian Fried Spring Rolls Recipe for Crispy Deep-Fried Egg Rolls Just Like in Cambodia


Cambodian Fried Spring Roll Dipping Sauce

This Cambodian fried spring roll dipping sauce recipe makes the quintessential condiment for the classic Cambodian fried spring rolls with pork and shrimp called teuk trei pa’em in Khmer. This sweet fish sauce-based dipping sauce is made with fish sauce, vinegar, palm sugar, shallots, garlic and carrot and it is an absolute cinch to make. This is one of our best Best New Years Eve recipes if you’re looking for fried food to soak up booze.

Cambodian Fried Spring Roll Dipping Sauce Recipe for a Sweet Tangy Sauce That’s a Cinch to Make


Tasty Thai Corn Fritters

Our Thai corn fritters recipe makes tod man khao pod in Thai – crunchy, chewy corn fritters that we gently spice with a little chilli paste. Eaten as a snack in Thailand and neighbouring Southeast Asian countries, you could serve these Thai corn fritters as finger food or as an appetiser. They’re fantastic dipped into our homemade Thai sweet chilli sauce.

This Thai Corn Fritters Recipe for Tod Man Khao Pod is Made for Thai Sweet Chilli Sauce


Traditional Scotch Eggs with a Thai Twist

This traditional Scotch eggs recipe for the classic British picnic snack has a Thai-influenced twist inspired by the Thai stir-fry favourite, pad kra pao or pad gaprao. Scotch eggs are traditionally made with a boiled egg wrapped in seasoned sausage meat, which is crumbed and deep-fried. Here, Terence has given the minced pork a pad kra pao flavour. These are perfect for lining the stomach if you’ve got a big New Years Eve ahead.

Traditional Scotch Eggs Recipe with a Thai Inspired Pad Kra Pao Twist


Russian Piroshki Minced Meat-Filled Hand Pies

This Russian piroshki recipe makes perfect savoury minced meat-filled pastries, also known as Russian hand pies. Eaten as a snack or with borscht, my baboushka also served piroshki as one of an array of Russian dishes for family gatherings. While we preferred deep-fried piroshki, these can also be baked. They’re another of our best Best New Years Eve recipes if you’re looking for solid dishes that will soak up the liquor.

Best Russian Piroshki Recipe for Perfect Savoury Minced Meat-Filled Hand Pies

Grilled Eggplant Sandwich with Goats Cheese, Nduja and Capsicum

This grilled eggplant sandwich recipe with goats cheese, ‘nduja and sweet red capsicum is our take on legendary Australian chef Christine Manfield’s iconic eggplant sandwich with goats cheese, pesto and red capsicum and it’s yet another of our best Best New Years Eve recipes if you’re looking for something small yet filling. In this version, we swap out Northern Italian basil pesto for Southern Italy’s ‘nduja, the spicy spreadable sausage paste from Calabria. If you’re not familiar with the Calabrian sausage, you can read all about ’nduja here.

Grilled Eggplant Sandwich Recipe with Goats Cheese, Nduja and Sweet Red Capsicum



Roasted Cauliflower Recipe

This roasted cauliflower recipe makes a Middle Eastern inspired dish of cauliflower florets roasted in gently spiced extra virgin olive oil, served on creamy hummus, and topped with crispy fried chickpeas, tangy pickled shallots, and fragrant fresh mint. It makes a fab side to roast chicken, baked fish or grilled meats.

Roasted Cauliflower Recipe with Creamy Hummus, Crispy Chickpeas, Pickled Shallots and Mint

Beef Kofta Recipe for Ground Meat Kebabs

This beef kofta recipe makes traditional Lebanese kafta – grilled, spiced, ground meat kebabs that are made throughout the Middle East. Cooked at home, served at restaurants, and barbecued in parks at family gatherings on weekends and holidays, these Arabic minced meat kebabs are one of the most beloved dishes in a region that loves its grilled meats. You can make these a day ahead, refrigerate them, and grill them just before your party, keeping them warm in the oven on low. Serve alongside the Middle Eastern dips such as hummus and baba ghanoush, for which we have recipes above.

Beef Kofta Recipe for Lebanese Kafta – Grilled Spiced Ground Meat Kebabs


Classic Champagne Cocktail Recipe with a Tropical Fruit Twist

A classic champagne cocktail recipe calls for Champagne, Angostura bitters, sugar cubes, and brandy or Cognac, and has traditionally been garnished with a maraschino cherry. You pop a couple of dashes of Angostura bitters onto a sugar cube. Drop it into champagne flutes. When you pour the Champagne in, it’s the process of the sugar slowly dissolving that will create that joyful fountain of bubbles in the flute that brings a smile to everyone’s face.

Classic Champagne Cocktail Recipe with a Tropical (Dragon) Fruit Twist


Classic Aperol Spritz Recipe

This classic Aperol spritz recipe makes the original Aperol spritz cocktail. The bittersweet Italian aperitif is sipped all over Italy, most famously in Venice. It’s super easy to make too – so easy that after a couple of times mixing this sunny Italian aperitif you won’t even need a recipe. In Italy locals sip spritzes everywhere from morning markets to early evening drinks that Italians enjoy together before heading off to dinner, but they’re also perfect for an early New Years Eve gathering.

Classic Aperol Spritz Recipe for a Taste of Summer in Italy Wherever You Are


White Peach Bellini Recipe from Chef Peter Gilmore

This White Peach Bellini recipe is courtesy of one of Australia’s best chefs, Peter Gilmore, who helms the kitchens of Quay and Bennelong in Sydney, two of Australia’s finest restaurants. Chef Peter Gilmore shared his super easy but very delicious White Peach Bellini recipe with us a few years ago. Making white peach bellinis is a festive tradition of the Gilmores. I like to use champagne flutes, although apparently the traditional Bellini glass was like a stemless champagne flute or highball glass. You can use yellow peaches or store-bought peach juice. The drink won’t be the same pretty colour, but it will still taste wonderful.

White Peach Bellini Recipe and Christmas Tips from Chef Peter Gilmore of Quay Restaurant


Watermelon Mint Cooler Recipe

This watermelon mint cooler recipe makes for a refreshing light cocktail to drink during the festive season in the southern hemisphere. If you’re in the chilly northern hemisphere, turn up your heating and pretend you’re some place warm. If you’re looking for a headier cocktail, skip the coconut water, and go for sparkling wine or Champagne with vodka, gin, white rum, or tequila, which can also go in the blender. Whatever you do, garnish with fresh mint for extra zing.

Watermelon Mint Cooler Recipe – A Refreshing Cocktail For a Warm Day


Margarita Recipe for Mexico’s Quintessential Cocktail

We learnt this classic Margarita recipe on our first trip to Mexico many years ago and make it wherever we are in the world. Use a dedicated Margarita glass or Champagne coupe. A classic Margarita requires only a rub of fresh lime on the rim before dipping it into quality salt. This Infused Margarita Lime Salt, supposedly made from the finest sea salts and real fruit, is fun. If you must use a Margarita Mix, go for something organic like the Tres Agaves Margarita Mix or this handcrafted small-batch Margarita Vintage Original Cocktail Mixer by Powell & Mahoney, which they claim is made with all natural ingredients to the original 1937 recipe.

Classic Margarita Recipe – How to Make the Quintessential Mexican Cocktail


Classic Pina Colada Recipe

This classic pina colada recipe does not contain any Malibu, a coconut flavoured rum that was invented for bartenders to simplify the classic piña colada recipe. The original piña colada recipe is simple enough, especially if you’re not making your own coconut cream and sugar syrup. I serve our pina coladas in tall vintage crystal tumblers or highballs with kitschy swizzle sticks and paper umbrellas. If you really want to go all tiki you could chop your pineapple in half, hollow out one half, and pour your pina colada into the pineapple. We recommend using bamboo straws instead of plastic. They’re in theme and they’re better for the environment.

Classic Pina Colada Recipe – A Cocktail that is the Tropics in a Glass


Michelada Recipe for A Spicy Mexican Beer Cocktail

Our michelada recipe makes the spicy Mexican beer cocktail that has a kick of chilli and it’s another one of our best festive cocktail recipes. It’s a fun, fantastic, thirst-quenching drink that is perfect for the beer drinkers who aren’t big on bubbly. Yes, they exist! You can make your own homemade chilli salt (this infused lime salt also works) and we recommend a big glass tumbler, preferably a recycled glass Mexican tumbler like the one pictured for authenticity.

Michelada Recipe – A Spicy Mexican Beer Cocktail with a Kick


Cuban Mojito Recipe with a Cambodian Twist

This classic Cuban mojito recipe is based on the mojitos we sipped in Old Havana on our first trip to Cuba way back in the mid-Nineties. As we live in Southeast Asia, we gave it a local twist and made it even more aromatic by adding kaffir lime leaves and a lemongrass stalk. Note that the limes and mint should only be lightly muddled. If you add kaffir lime leaf and lemongrass, just crush one kaffir lime leaf slightly and only bash the base of the lemongrass stalk – you want to release the aromas and flavours without smashing your ingredients.

An Authentic Cuban Mojito Recipe from Old Havana – With a Cambodian Twist


Caipirinha Recipe for Brazil’s National Cocktail

Unlike drinks such as Italy’s limoncello, which is best sipped in the late afternoon southern Italian sun after a long slow lunch and doesn’t travel so well if you live in cold climates, the caipirinha does, as long as you take a bottle of proper Brazilian cachaça home with you. This cocktail is all about the Cachaça. There are two main types, industrial and artisanal. It’s easy to tell the difference as the industrial Cachaça is generally clear and cheap and the artisanal Cachaça is darker and relatively more expensive.

Perfecting the Classic Brazilian Caipirinha in Rio De Janeiro

Classic Negroni with Spices Recipe

When it comes to festive cocktails, it’s hard to beat this classic negroni with spices recipe. You need a really good reason to mess with a classic negroni recipe and there are few better reasons than Christmas and New Year’s Eve. Terence has mixed a classic negroni with subtle spice and fruit that – in keeping with the spirit of the season – has warmed the drink up. You’ll spot a single spherical ice cube in the glass: the ice cube melts slower and keeps the drink cold. There’s nothing worse than a negroni that’s weak and warm. We use these spherical ice cube makers.

Please do let us know if you make any of our best New Years Eve recipes, as we’d love to know how they turn out for you. Happy New Year! Cheers to a happier and healthier New Year in 2023!


Lara Dunston Patreon


Photo of author
A travel and food writer who has experienced over 70 countries and written for The Guardian, Australian Gourmet Traveller, Feast, Delicious, National Geographic Traveller, Conde Nast Traveller, Travel+Leisure Southeast Asia, DestinAsian, TIME, CNN, The Independent, The Telegraph, Sunday Times Travel Magazine, AFAR, Wanderlust, International Traveller, Get Lost, Four Seasons Magazine, Fah Thai, Sawasdee, and more, as well as authored more than 40 guidebooks for Lonely Planet, DK, Footprint, Rough Guides, Fodors, Thomas Cook, and AA Guides.

Leave a comment