The Kentucky Derby is about big hats, Mint Juleps and an epic snack spread. For a foolproof menu that comes together quickly (but still looks impressive), check out our Goodtaste Derby Day Party Spread. We have a super-Southern Deviled Egg mash-up that can be prepped a day in advance, easy baked sliders that only take 15 minutes to assemble, and a gorgeous no-recipe relish tray. This entire menu feeds about 6 to 8 people, but if you’re expecting a bigger crowd, it can easily be doubled or tripled. So, put on your flashiest hat and stock up on bourbon, because the Derby is almost here and you will not want to miss this party.
In case you’re not familiar with this old school dinner party staple, a relish tray is a bountiful platter of olives, pickles and cut up vegetables. Serve it alongside mini canapés, with grilled cheese sandwiches and a big pot of simmering soup, or with Deviled Eggs and sliders, as we do here. This retro appetizer is a classic for a reason: no recipe is required and it adds playful variety to any party spread. While a relish tray can be exactly what you want it to be, here are few tips to get you started.
- We like to use an assortment of different sized jars for height and visual variety and then arrange them on a platter.
- Offer fancy metal toothpicks or petite spoons and forks for your guests to pick up olives or pickles.
- Place some cocktail napkins or small plates close by.
- As we mentioned above, a relish tray can have whatever you want on it. For the most beautiful tray, pick things that come in a variety of colors, sizes and shapes – we like to place spears of cucumber, celery and carrots in jars for some added height. If you’re serving your relish tray with sliders, like we do here, then add some condiments. Here are a few ideas:
- Cut up crudités (Carrot sticks, radishes, celery, cucumber spears, sliced fennel, endive leaves)
- Pickled vegetables (peppers, cauliflower, pearl onions, beets, string beans, mushrooms, cornichons, bread and butter pickle chips)
- Olives (pick 1 or 2 varieties! If they’re not pitted, then include a small bowl for pits)
- Condiments (mustards, chutney, pimento cheese, remoulade, aioli)
- Miscellaneous (This is where you can have some fun! Add pickled shrimp, a cheese ball and crackers, halved soft-boiled eggs)