Got the post-sale blues? Before you bow your Recessionista head in shame, grab those stilettos, gather your gals, and get crafty! Rather than going to that chic new restaurant or bar straight away (and on an empty stomach) opt to host a pre-Ladies Night Out at your place. This way you skip the pricey meal and the inevitable side dish that comes with it – and one hefty bill.
For a fraction of the price, you can prepare some simple apps coupled with at-home cocktails or wine (thanks to your girlfriends who you’ve commissioned to provide the liquid hor d’oeuvres).
Try small but filling bites like Fresh Fig with Brie crostini, or Prosciutto-Wrapped figs with Blue Cheese. Tiny snacks like these will satiate you without causing you to bust out of that adorable new dress. If you love your greens, roast some fresh veggies in the oven – drizzled with olive oil, salt and pepper (do yourself a favor and skip the garlic…trust me, it stays on your breath).
When it comes to the wine, it doesn’t need to be anything fancy. For example, Trader Joe’s carries many a good vintage at a bargain basement price (some as cheap as $5). If liquor is more your flavor, a decent bottle of vodka goes a long way…and can make a ton of delicious drinks.
So invite your lovelies over prior to your desired e.t.a, say cheers, share a mini-meal and gear up for a great evening! Oh, and don’t forget to cab it – especially after that pre-party toast!
Alycia Lane’s Crostini with Figs, Brie and Prosciutto
(Serves 6-8 ladies)
1 loaf crusty bread like pugliese, sliced ½ inch thick
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil6 fresh figs, sliced in half
12 slices of prosciutto
1 wedge of brie sliced into 12 good sized pieces
1 cup of arugula leaves
Salt and pepper
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F or preheat grill on high. Arrange the sliced bread on a baking sheet. Brush with some of the olive oil. Sprinkle with salt. Bake or grill until the bread is pale golden and crisp, about 5 minutes. Remove from the oven or grill. Top with slices of brie and return to either oven or grill for a 1 minute until brie starts getting melted and runny.
Brush the cut side of fig with olive oil. Place on grill and cook until it gets caramelized, about 3 to 4 minutes.
Top brie with a slice of prosciutto. Sprinkle a few leaves of arugula on top and drizzle with olive oil. Add fig and sprinkle freshly ground pepper over it all. Delish!
Alycia Lane is a morning news anchor for the L.A.- based NBC station. A multiple Emmy, Edward R. Murrow and Golden Mic award winner, she has worked on-air in other major TV markets such as New York, Miami and Philadelphia – before landing in the City of Angels. Her other passions include yoga, cooking, baking, interior design and all things domestic.