The 4th of July weekend and party is now over. It is hard to believe it is over already; it went by so quickly. We sure had fun though! Fun planning, fun creating recipes and a lot of fun hanging out all weekend with family. Time to put all the fun holiday decorations away. When you have a child that is born on the 4th of July you sure accumulate quite a bit of festive decorations over the years. We also try to be creative by coming up with new & fun ideas each year. There is one thing we started doing and that is setting up a photo booth. Photo booths have become quite popular. I have seen them at many different functions, even weddings. The photo booth sure creates a lot of laughs! We lay out many different festive items on a table for everyone to wear such as 4th of July hats, beads, sunglasses (some even light up), festive fans, temporary tattoos, a giant neck tie and even tiaras! Everyone gets to choose which items they want to wear and then they can get their picture taken in front of the homemade flag the kids made and hung. My son, the 4th of July baby, has a special hat that only he gets to wear. He has had this festive hat for almost 6 years now; he is finally growing into it!
Another great part of the holiday weekend was getting to taste and eat all the yummy dishes and watch how everyone enjoyed the food. We made appetizers such as my Festive Sausage Bites w/Honey Mustard Dipping Sauce. If you need a quick & super easy appetizer to make, this is the one for you! It is definitely worth a try and everyone loved it. We also had a couple of nights of dinners cooking out on the grill. We cooked up a large batch of my Boneless Ribs and homemade BBQ Sauce and also hosted a more traditional cookout with Cheeseburgers, Hotdogs and Grilled Chicken. Then there were the fun & festive drinks like my Watermelon Strawberry Margaritas. We also made a Strawberry Lemonade; we had one for the adults and also a kid friendly version of this drink. With all the cooking, eating and drinking I think I need a vacation to recover.
Check out some of the recipes from our Festive Holiday Weekend:
Festive Sausage Bites w/Honey Mustard Dipping Sauce
Makes approx. 36 Appetizers
6-8 Sausage Links, fully cooked *any kind you like
1, Puff Pastry
1/4 Cup, Agave
1/4 Cup, Dijon Mustard
Preheat oven to 400 Degrees. Spray a baking sheet with some cooking spray and set aside.
To make the dipping sauce: whisk together the Agave and Dijon Mustard. Stir well until nice and smooth. Set aside until ready to use; you can store on the counter or in the fridge. I like to keep on the counter so it isn’t too cold when I serve these.
Cut the sausage links into somewhat thick slices. Line the sausage pieces up on the baking sheet, leaving some room between each one.
Lay the puff pastry out onto a cutting board. Crack the egg into a bowl and beat. Using a pastry brush, brush the egg onto the puff pastry. Using a small star cookie cutter, cut the puff pastry (start at one corner of the puff pastry and cut the stars very close to one another to maximize the amount of stars you get out of it).
Place each star on top of each piece of sausage. Stick a tooth pick through each one. Bake in the oven for approx. 15-20 minutes, just until the puff pastry gets nice and golden brown and puffs up a bit. Place onto a platter with your dipping sauce and serve.
Sausage: For the sausage I thought it would be fun to mix it up a bit. So I used a few different types. I used the following in this recipe:
- Spicy Jalapeño Chicken Sausage
- Sweet Italian Chicken Sausage
- Pork Andouille Sausage
- Sweet Italian Cured Beef Sausage
You can use whatever type of sausage you like best. Keep in mind that I used Fully Cooked sausage in this recipe. If you buy sausage that is not fully cooked you will want to sauté them first on the stove prior to baking them (to partially cook). Using a fully cooked sausage made for a very quick & easy appetizer. Everyone loved these!!
Toothpicks: I forgot to buy toothpicks. Luckily, I had wooden skewers on hand. So I cut them down to size and they worked perfectly! Sometimes you have to improvise! If using wooden skewers, you may want to soak them in water for a bit prior to baking these to avoid burning the skewers. When the bites came out of the oven I replaced a few of the skewers with some fun, festive flag & firework toothpicks (since I served these at my 4th of July party).