Your party food needs an update. It’s not like people have stopped loving stuffed mushrooms, that will never happen, but if you can miniaturize a dish people absolutely love, you’re heading for a slam dunk. Join Peter Callahan, NYC’s caterer to the stars, and revamp your special occasion menus in delightful ways, like these mini lobster bakes. 

Having spent all my summers on the water, I find the clambake one of the most all-American staples of summer. This mini version is a substantial hors d’oeuvre that could also serve as a first course. A small metal sand pail holds one whole cooked crayfish and two cooked, shelled crayfish tails, a salt-baked baby potato, and fresh baby corn. For easier eating, throw in a wooden fork. Check with your local fishmonger for cooked whole crayfish and tails; you can also order both online. Fresh baby corn is appearing more frequently at farmer’s markets, but if you can’t get it locally, just use the canned variety.

Reprinted with permission from Peter Callahan’s Party Food