Holiday Open House is an ebook written
by Marilyn Moll in the Spirit of Titus 2 to encourage women, wives,
and mothers of all ages to restore the lost art of biblical hospitality.
This ebook is filled with planning tips, decorating ideas and
The holiday season offers an opportunity to open our hearts
to friends and relative, guests and strangers with warmth and
generosity into our homes. It's important to differentiate between
Martha Stewart-style entertaining, however, and biblical hospitality.
Entertaining is often lavish, and done to impress others, and
done so with the expectation that your equally or more lavish
party will be reciprocated.
Biblical hospitality, however, emphasizes the willingness to
open your home to others and share what you have without any expectations
of a return or a reward, with the goal of building relationships.
Are you are thinking of having an open house, dessert party,
game night, birthday party or other celebration? Wonderful! The
holiday season offers an opportunity to open our hearts to friends
and relative, guests and strangers with warmth and generosity
into our homes.
People will be delighted just to be invited to get to know
you and your family better. Here are some simple and realistic
For Planning Steps: Scroll down
Here is a small recipe sampler from Holiday
Cheese Balls are a great way to serve cheese and crackers
more economically then sliced hard cheeses. They can be made ahead
easily if carefully wrapped, and re-rolled if need be. If you
are going to have a party, stock up on cream cheese while it is
on sale. It is used in many, many different dips, and appetizers
be sure to buy plenty.
Cheese Ball #1
3 cups finely shredded cheddar cheese (3/4 lb)
8 oz cream cheese
Small jar of pimentos
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1 cup finely chopped pecans
3/4 cup mayo
1 small onion, finely chopped (optional)
2 TB Worcestershire sauce
1/2 cup finely chopped fresh parsley
Mix all ingredients together. (Tip: put cream cheese out on
the counter for a few hours to warm up. It will mix much easier
warm than cold.) Combine all the ingredients EXCEPT the parley
and Form cheese mixture into a ball or log and roll in paprika
and parsley. Chill until ready to serve, wrap tightly in plastic
wrap. Serve with crackers.
Hummus and Pita Chips
Hummus is traditionally a creamy puree of seasoned chickpeas.
Hummus is VERY inexpensive to make and really helps fill up tummies.
2 cloves roasted garlic for best flavor or raw-roughly
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup drained bean liquid to make it creamy (optional)
14 oz (400g) canned chickpeas (garbanzo beans)-rinsed and drained
1/2 tsp cumin or more to taste
2TB olive oil
1/2 - 1 tsp Real salt
Place all ingredients in a food processor or blender and process
until smooth, scraping the sides occasionally. Adjust seasonings
to taste. Serve with a variety of vegetables.
Variations: Spicier, Roasted Red Pepper, and Black Olive
Hot Spinach and Artichoke Dip
2 cups of mayo
1 (14oz) jar of artichoke hearts (NOT marinated, just plain),
drained and chopped
10 oz frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained
1 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
2 cloves minced garlic
Mix all together and bake in a pie plate for 20-25 minutes
in 350 degree oven or until warmed. Serve with party rye bread
and wheat crackers.
Butter Nut Snowballs
I have been using this recipe for nearly 30 years!
1 Cup butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
2 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp salt
2 cups all-purpose flour (I use kamut flour)
2 cups finely chopped walnuts or pecans ( I use pecans) (more
of a coarse flour consistency)
Cream butter, sugar, and vanilla until fluffy.Add the flour,
salt, and blend well. Add in the finely chopped nuts. Shape into
1 inch balls.Bake 325° F for 30 minutes. Do not brown! Roll
in confectioner's sugar while still warm and place on cooling
Red and green makes these colorful and tasty for the Christmas
2 packages of cream cheese (8oz) softened,
1 package ranch salad dressing mix (dry mix)
1/2 cup minced sweet red pepper
1/2 cup minced celery
1/4 cup minced green onions
1/4 cup minced black olives (optional)
3-4 flour tortillas (10 inch)
In a mixing bowl beat cream cheese and dressing mix until smooth.
Add the red peppers,celery, onion, and olives; mix well. Spread
about 3/4 cup on each tortilla. Roll up tightly;
wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours. Slice
into 1/2 inch
pieces. Yield: 15-20 servings (Double or triple as needed) Make
My children and their friends absolutely adore this dip
and request it often. So
easy they can make it themselves. Double the amounts for a crowd.
8 oz cream cheese
1 cup cheddar cheese
1 can chili
Tortilla Chips or Fritos
Optional Garnishes: sliced green onion or chopped cilantro
Cut up cream cheese and lay on the bottom of a 8 inch baking
pan. Pour chili on top of cream cheese. Sprinkle the cheese over
the chili. Bake at 375 until heated through, about 15-20 minutes.
Serve with tortilla chips. Double or triple as needed.
Serving Idea: To make this into an entrée, serve with
baked potatoes. Cut cooked potatoes open and spread the dip over
the potatoes. Add some onions or chives.
Plan an Open House:
1. Determine the date, time, and purpose of your party or
open house. Send out written invitations or make phone calls
several weeks ahead so your event is on their calendar. RSVPs
help with planning but are often overlooked. Be sure to give a
date by which you wish to hear from people. Don't stress if people
fail to RSVP and show up anyway, as the social grace of response
to them is becoming lost.
2. Start planning the food you will be serving based on
the time of day your party is planned. If you start your planning
up to a month ahead of time, many appetizers, cheese balls, cookies,
and more can be prepared or purchased and frozen ahead. It is
perfectly acceptable to incorporate convenience foods and commercial,
frozen appetizers such as mini pizzas or quiches, chicken wings,
or desserts to make a realistic do-able menu plan.
Calculate the number of servings of each item you expect people
will eat and multiply that times the number of guests. Then you
will be able to make detailed lists of quantities of ingredients
that will be needed for the food, as well as the supplies you
wish to have on hand, including cups, plates, napkins and decorations.
Paper products add more expense but also streamline cleanup, so
balance cost versus convenience in all your planning.
If you use what you have on hand, expenses may be controlled.
Purchase the paper products, and non-perishable grocery items
as far ahead as possible, always keeping an eye open for sales
when you can stock up. Keep detailed lists updated and revised
as you go.
3. Identify which serving dishes will be used for each food
item and set aside all the serving pieces needed for your
occasion ahead of time. If you don't have enough serving pieces,
borrow these items beforehand. Plan how you will present each
food item attractively with a workable flow. This is a good time
to determine who will be responsible, during the party, to keep
food trays and beverage service refreshed. Enlist their help ahead
of time. This would be a good opportunity to train a responsible
child to be attentive to serving others.
4. Develop a realistic timeline for decorating (if needed),
last minute food preparations, and cleaning tasks. Enlist the
help of family members, friends or relatives in all aspects of
food and home preparations. Remember, you do not need to do it
all yourself so don't be embarrassed about asking! Guests will
be delighted to contribute whatever they can. It's even okay to
ask that the guest bring or prepare a specific item or recipe.
5. Pray over your plans and preparations. Ask the Lord
to enable you to be creative and to plan a beautiful, delicious
selection of foods without overspending. Make your party plans
and preparations fun for yourself as well as the guests by keeping
the attitude that you are serving the Lord and doing this for
His glory. Avoid perfectionism which will rob your joy! Sometimes
our best and funniest memories will be the things that were forgotten
or didn't go perfectly!
6. Execute your plan on party day by allowing plenty of
time for last minute preparations and assigning tasks to family
Menu Planning Tips:
1. When planning the menu for an open house or a buffet,
consider serving a wide variety of foods that contrast in color,
shape, size, taste (sweet, sour, type of seasonings), and temperatures
(hot and cold). For example, a vegetable platter with orange carrots,
white cauliflower, green broccoli florettes, red cherry tomatoes,
and green celery sticks gives a variety of shape, color, and crunch
while the accompanying dips offer complementary smooth texture.
Meatballs are warm, savory, and chewy; cheese balls are cold,
smooth and spicy and can be served with crackers which are dry,
flat and crunchy. Mixed nuts are small and salty; cookies, candies
and other desserts contribute sweetness which contrasts and complements
the salty or spicy foods being served.
2. Family favorites that are tried and true recipes
can be served to help reinforce the memory of the occasion. As
long as you have a wide variety of food items, you will have something
that appeals to everyone without boredom and monotony. Leftovers
are a very good thing when having a party because no-one wants
to come up short on food. Besides, when you plan for leftovers,
you plan for future meals that will require minimal preparations.
3. I suggest that your open house menu include finger
foods such as a platter each for veggies and fruits, including
dips, a crockpot of meat balls or chicken wings, appetizers such
as mini-quiches, a cheese ball with crackers or chips, sweets,
and beverages. If you are planning around regular meal times,
make sure you allow extra servings of each item as people will
be more hungry and eat more. Events planned after regular meal
times, such as early afternoon or after dinner will not require
as much food and variety.
4. Beverages should be simple but tasty. Hot and cold
beverages such as sweetened and unsweetened ice tea with lemon,
apple cider or juice, and hot tea and coffee is sufficient. Always
have a pitcher of cold water available. Beautiful, rich, sweet
punches may compete with the foods you are serving. Avoid serving
soda as it is expensive and the plastic bottles are tacky.
Open House contains over 30 pages of easy, tasty, mouth watering,
appetizing recipes and informaton including how to adorn and decorate
your home on a shoestring.
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