I love party food. And, I love party food that is easy, yummy, and cute. I thought it would be fun to do a twist on a traditional party tray idea by using succulents and an edible garden as my inspiration (Disclaimer:Don’t eat real succulents!). I have to admit, it was actually really easy, and I made it easier by using pre-made, store-bought dips from Trader Joe’s, and then just adding the veggies and other nibbles. I am a bit of a cheater that way, but, I feel like if you are prepping for a party and are too stressed out about it, it’s going to carry over into how your guests feel. I would rather open a container, dump it in another dish,and enjoy myself, rather than freak out that something I made wasn’t perfect. I always feel like as long as you have enough food, how can you not have a good time? And, if you love succulents, you can find some awesome succulent and cactus inspired projects here.
This was actually really fun to make, and when my kids saw it, and realized what it was they also got very excited. I mean then best part about food photography is eating it, right? And if it looks fun to eat, that’s even better!
Here are my pairings for veggies and dip and how I put together each one:
Green pepper with spinach dip
Endive with kale and spinach dip
Herbed goat cheese with almond slivers with roasted and salted pumpkin seeds
Sugar pea pods with hummus
I gave all of the veggies and good wash, and when I started cutting the green peppers in little leaf shapes, I was kind of like “I don’t know what I was thinking, this seems like it is going to take forever.” It actually went really fast, and except for trimming the endive, it’s the only real cutting. The rest is just sticking it in the spreads and dips.
It took about two green peppers. I cut them into rectangles and then cut off the edges (Always use knife safety!). You are going to end up with lots of little, extra cut green pepper pieces. I threw mine in a covered bowl in the fridge to use with a rice dish later in the week. No reason to waste those! Add your dips to all of your bowls up to the top. Cut extra veggies to put on the side.
Once they are cut,just fill your bowl with dip and start adding your “petals” in an alternate pattern.
You’ll do the same with all of your veggies and nuts. Once you get the hang of it, it’s an easy party tray idea.
I found my food-safe ceramic containers at Crate and Barrel outlet and Target. I liked the idea of mixing and matching the shapes.
I love how the endive ended up looking, almost like a flower. The thing is to use dips and spreads that are thick enough so the veggies will stay up.
In the herbed goat cheese, I alternated toasted almond slivers and roasted pumpkin seeds.
In the hummus, I added sugar snap peas. Next time, I’ll put those a little bit closer, but they still looked adorbs.
They made a really cute, little garden! Refrigerate until ready to eat.
I added the extra veggies, olives, and crackers to fill in the rest of the tray,and I served it all on a wood cutting board.
Doesn’t this party tray idea make you think of spring? I think this would be so fun for a bridal or baby shower!
If you liked this appetizer idea, try this one!