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Entertaining: New Year's Eve Dinner

Ring in the new year with an elegant dinner

Written by Krissa Rossbund
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    Most of the recipes for Mary McDonald's Black and White New Year's Eve dinner were developed by her good friend, Julia Turshen, a New York City-based food writer who has co-authored Spain: A Culinary Road Trip with Mario Batali and Gwyneth Paltrow.

    The recipes are simple to prepare; their success depends on purchasing the best quality ingredients: good olives, caviar, chocolate, vanilla. We’ve added a luscious white and dark chocolate pot de creme recipe for dessert. Black licorice adds a touch of whimsy to the menu.

    Nicoise Olives with Fennel Seeds and Thyme
    Baby Potatoes with Creme Fraiche and Caviar
    Arugula and Pear Salad
    Squid Ink Fettuccine with Clams
    Black and White Pot de Creme

    Shopping List

    A grocery list follows to make shopping for this festive dinner easier for you. Package sizes are included so you have enough for duplicated recipe ingredients.

    Check your pantry for these necessary items before shopping:

    • Sea salt
    • Ground black pepper
    • Sugar (need 6 tablespoons)
    • Vanilla extract (need 1 teaspoon)
    • Olive oil (need about 1/2 cup)
    • Honey
    • Butter (need 2 tablespoons)
    • Eggs (need 4)

    Specialty Grocery Store

    • 8 ounces pitted Nicoise olives
    • 2 to 3 ounces caviar
    • 3 12-ounce packages dried squid ink fettuccine (need 2 pounds)
    • 3 ounces 60- to 70 percent dark or bittersweet chocolate
    • 3-1/2 ounces white chocolate


    • 1 bunch fresh thyme
    • 1 bunch fresh dill
    • 1 bunch chive
    • 1 head garlic
    • 1-1/2 pounds tiny new potatoes
    • 1 lemon (for lemon juice)
    • 2 medium pears
    • 2 5-ounce packages organic arugula (need 8 cups)


    • Red wine vinegar
    • Mayonnaise
    • Black licorice

    Baking aisle

    • Fennel seeds
    • Poppy seeds
    • Crushed red pepper
    • Grapeseed or canola oil

    Fsh counter

    • 4 pounds clams


    • 1 8-ounce container creme fraiche or sour cream (need 1/2 cup)
    • 2 half-pint containers whipping cream (need 2 cups)


    • 1 bottle dry white wine (need 1 cup)
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    This beautifully crafted bar cart, The Sidecar by Moore and Giles, is a great way to store liquor, glassware, bar tools, and anything else needed to complete your own miniature bar. The cart, made of Virginia black walnut, birch, leather, aluminum, and brass, is wheeled to make sure the party can travel with you. Perfect for drink-lovers without the space for a full bar.