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If you're going to brine a turkey, brine a few pork loins too. They slice nice and take to sauces real well. Smoke a few smoked sausages, and with a nice selection of rolls, mayo, mustard, horseradish, kraut, and a few other goodies, you'll have the makings of a nice sandwich bar.

Your usual sides should do nicely: baked beans, slaw, potato salad, broc salad, etc.
An appetizer option that gets lots of comments is smoked deviled eggs. Take peeled hard boiled eggs, put them in the smoker with smoke already rolling for about 30-40min.- any longer and they get rubbery. They'll look like brown eggs. Remove and let air cool for a while (if cooled in the fridge they get condensation on them). Cut them in half and use whatever deviled egg recipe you'd normally use for the yolks. Good luck with your party!
Pulled pork goes a long way. Small rolls with pulled pork, simple, holds well for that time length.

The turkey breast would also be simple to do and would also feed a big crowd if served on small rolls.

Not your traditional item for church gathering, but I assure you they will love it.
wow...all great ideas! Smokin', I'm thinking more of a "graze" type deal. Long party and people will be eating at different times throughout the night.

Timing is an issue since some won't make it all the way to midnight, the party will dwindle a bit, but still want good food popping up as the night progresses.

Moinks is a great idea. Hadn't heard of the smoked deviled eggs, I'll try that this week on a test run...sounds good!

I had thought about smokin' baked beans, but wasn't sure about that. Since this is a semi-stand up and eat deal, the beans can get messy.

I do like all the "snacky" suggestions! I think I will add some of Todd's suggested sausage, maybe as hot links.

Good going, guys. More ideas on "pass around" type appetizers? comes stupid question. I've never made an ABT. I did look up as many previous posts as I could, hoping this question wouldn't be ALL that stupid.

But, a Smokin' post in 2001 seemed to indicate grilling the ABT's rather than usual CS. Did I read that right, or?

And I'd like to make them a bit more 'sophisticated' as a passed appetizer. In with the cream cheese...? Salmon? Italian Sausage? ?

Maybe I'll try cutting them in circles and secured with toothpicks, or would I lose all the filling?
But, a Smokin' post in 2001 seemed to indicate grilling the ABT's rather than usual CS. Did I read that right, or?

Okay, so which of the 10023 posts was it? LOL

You know thinking on the spot, I've never heard this (am I the first) let's take you're idea a little further.

Stuff the full Jalapeno
Slice into circle (you're idea)
WRAP in a partial slice of bacon.

Size would go well with the moinks.

The cheese will ooze out if you cut them in circles so you need something to keep it in there.

I'd keep the filling simple, probably 2/3 sausage and 1/3 of cheese (cream and shredded) Less to ooze out
Unless you have several people helping, you've passed into the realm of "way too much to do". If you get into things like ABT's that require prep, and lets say you have 5 different items(abt's, moinks, bacon wrapped shrimp, etc), even if each person eats just one of each item, you're looking at prepping 750 individual pieces. Nobody eats just one as the old saying goes, so plan on starting prep today and finishing around the 3rd. Frowner Just so you'll know, for passed apps, we usually figure on 5-8 pieces per person the first hour, and 2 more for each additional hour.

Definitely do bowls of plate fillers, like ham salad, potato salad, chicken salad, pasta salad, marinated vegetables, etc. Have these on the table when people arrive and give them 15-20 minutes to nibble a bit before you bring out the more labor intensive items, unless you like seeing one person pile on 6 items in one trip.

Do something that can be easily made by the tray or in bulk of some form, or better yet, made by the person eating it.

Try potato skins on a sheet pan with cheese and bacon, brisket, or pulled pork with some sauce as needed. You can make several trays ahead of time and each tray should hold 30+ skins.

Smoked sausage with mustard, and a mustard/pineapple dip, or bbq/pineapple, etc. Just slice the sausage when you're ready to serve it.

The already mentioned smoked meats, either on a tray or already inserted into small rolls awaiting the eater to dress as desired.

Smoked meatballs in sauce. Swedish meatballs. Smokey links in sauce. Smoked fish dip with pita chips and/or crackers. Stuffed mushrooms.

Cheese or sour cream dip with veggies and fruit. You can dress up these dips with chopped sweet cherry peppers.

Artichoke dip smoked in the smoker is very good. A quesa type dip is also very good, with a side of salsa(s). As simple as it sounds, chips and dip are usually favorites at events I do.

You can also do a bunch of things with phyllo or pastry dough from the freezer section. Jelly rolls with pastry dough stuffed with sausage and cheese, peperoni, mushrooms, etc is easy and can be made ahead of time and sliced when needed. Phyllo can be layered with cream cheese, chopped brisket and jalapenos, or any number of other things and baked ahead of time.

A specialty(restaurant) food supplier can provide you with frozen tart shells, that can be filled with almost anything and taste good. They come in cases of 200-400 depending on size, but they make life easy for something like this.

Possible fillings for Tarts/phyllo/pastry include cream cheese/cheddar mix with brisket, shrimp and cocktail sauce, scallops w/bacon and alfredo, smoked chicken with caramelized onions, grilled chicken with buffalo sauce and diced celery. Pretty much anything you already like that can be chopped up and put into a shell or rolled.

The overall point I'm trying to make here is that just the simple act of putting toothpicks into individual meatballs is EXTREMELY time consuming when you have to do it to 150-1000 pieces. Trust me.

If all you have to do is heat and plate, you're not going to have any fun this night. If you have to do much more than heat and plate, nobody else will have fun either, and they'll be hungry.

If I committed to a party for 150 for passed apps, I'd plan for at least 4 skilled people(ie, no supervision required) other than myself to prep and plate the food.

Think through this carefully. Either plated or buffet style, you're going to need a bunch of serving platters and heating space to heat/keep things warm.

Good luck and have fun. Plan it thoroughly and you can do it. Don't plan, and find out why there are so many people that talk about the "one" time they catered a party.
Last edited by Former Member
Great thoughts and ideas! Todd, you da man.

I'm not afraid of the work, prep, etc. but am concerned over having too much that needs last minute prep...'cuz I'll run out of 'last minutes.' So, I'm going to sort through all these terrific ideas and find those that I really can get going now, and the week before the event that require nothing more than a 15 minute reheat, or better yet served cold! :0)

Love the idea of the premade puff pastry shells with filling.

Cool... I'll let you know what I do and how it comes out. Pictures, too if I can figure that out! hahhaha
I'll disagree with Todd on this one (imagine that) Big Grin and since it's a BBQ forum we went with the bbq theme for the appetizers.

example. If you're doing meatballs, why not wrap in bacon and have moinks?

He is right, it just up to you to decide how much effort.

You don't have to make one of each for everyone, and since many/most of those can be made in advance, you just need to decide how many you want to make.

I don't think prosciutto will hold up well. Using thick cut bacon (wrapped so it keeps the cheese in) might work, but you need to test it. To me, ABT's are a PITA for parties.

Go with todd's pastry idea but stuff them with the ABT ingredients?
Thanks for the follow-up Todd. Party went great. 50 folks in all. Did two big sirloin tip roasts ala Smokin' (oven start at 450 for 20 min, then CS at 250 for about four hours (pulled the smaller of the two and held in foil until bigger one came up to temp), 2 oz Apple wood, put smaller back in CS and held both roasts there at 140 for 3 hours.

Smoked hot links (four slices halfway through to expose more interior...great. And had trouble finding an affordable turkey to do, so took my son in law's suggestion and brined a load of chicken breasts and CS'd them at 250 to a temp of 165...foiled and held till serving.

Then 'on the spot' carved the beef roasts, skinned, boned and slice/served the chicken and sliced the links. Had BBQ sauce, horseradish/sour cream/mayo sauce, and whole grain mustard. All a BIIG hit..."best beef/chicken they've ever had" kinda stuff. Several asked "if I'd cooked the meats myself"...and then their eyes kinda glazed over when I told them how it was done. Sorta like, "oh, they can't recreate that!"

Figuring that the CS would be in play for the roasts and chicken I tried making up some meatballs last week and smoking bacon. They tasted good, but were a bit mishapen from the fat cooking out of them. Served them in small quantity w/ BBQ sauce.

For the non-smoke app's, I went with the suggested shells and made a salmon/cream cheese mixture and piped into the bottom of the shells...served them up cold with decorative tops...thin pickle slices, olive/pimento slices, cilantro leaves, etc.

Great success, and didn't have a ton of stress over it. Thanks to all you guys for your imput!

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