In search of inspiration to elevate our New Year’s Eve celebration, we reached out to Samantha Stathis Lynch of Samantha Ware Designs (and a One Kings Lane alum!). Here she shows us a tablescape to help ring in the year on a chic note and offers some entertaining suggestions.
I was inspired by the colors in my newly acquired oil painting that sits behind the dining table. The painting, by Krista Harris, was a wedding gift from my husband, Christopher. It’s composed of varying shades of blue, green, orange, and pink, so I wanted to bring those hues out not only in the table setting itself but also in the florals. I opted for pale yellow English roses, ocher ranunculus, small citrus fruits, and varying greenery and added in some pomegranates and deep-purple ranunculus to bring a moodier touch to the display. I took some of my dried hydrangea buds from outside and spray-painted them gold for a lavish touch!
My husband and I love hosting and often have friends and family over for dinner parties. New Year’s Eve is a night to reflect on the past year and celebrate all that’s to come, so why not create a stunning dinner that will wow your guests? Christopher is English, so whenever we host a gathering we like to do a roast dinner, something that’s seen as a holiday tradition across the pond. I’ll make roast chicken, golden potatoes, Yorkshire pudding (popovers here in the States), and for dessert, a decadent chocolate cake covered in edible flowers and gold leaf. Ringing in the new year wouldn’t be complete without endless champagne, so I’ll fill a large vintage silver bucket with ice spheres full of roses and bottles of champagne and wine.
If you don’t think your usual roast chicken is special enough for New Year’s Eve, try this Roast Chicken with Lemon and Rosemary recipe from the experts at Sur La Table. It serves up to six people.
3 tablespoons rosemary, minced
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 medium garlic cloves, minced
2 teaspoons lemon zest
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 (4- to 5-pound) roasting chicken
1 whole lemon, quartered
1 medium onion, peeled and chopped into 1-inch pieces
4 stalks celery, trimmed and chopped into 1-inch pieces
3 large carrots, peeled and chopped into 1-inch pieces
1 cup chicken broth, low-sodium
¼ cup dry white wine
2 teaspoons all-purpose flour
¼ cup rosemary sprigs, for garnish
lemon wedges, for garnish
Preheat oven to 450°F and place a rack in the center.
To prepare the marinade, in a small bowl combine the rosemary, olive oil, garlic, lemon zest, salt, and pepper.
Place the chicken breast side up in a Dutch oven or roasting pan with a rack. Rub the marinade over the chicken, and place the quartered lemons into the cavity of the chicken. Tie the legs with twine.
Place the chicken in the oven and roast until skin is golden brown, about 20-30 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 375°F, and scatter onion, celery, and carrot pieces in the roasting pan. Continue roasting until thigh meat registers 160°F on a meat thermometer, about 40-50 minutes more.
Remove roasting pan from oven and lift the chicken on the rack out of the pan. Transfer chicken to a cutting board with a well, and cover loosely with foil. Allow chicken to rest for 20 minutes.
While chicken is resting, discard the vegetables and pour the pan juices from the roasting pan into a fat separator. Pour off as much fat as possible and return the remaining pan juices to the roasting pan.
Place the roasting pan across two burners on the stove and heat on medium-high heat. Whisk in chicken stock and white wine, cooking until pan juices come to a boil while scraping the bottom of the pan to release any browned bits. Sprinkle flour over the pan juices and whisk vigorously until mixture is smooth. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until gravy thickens and coats the back of a spoon, about 10-15 minutes. Strain gravy through a fine-mesh strainer into a small saucepan. Taste and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper. Keep warm.
To serve, remove twine from chicken and carve. Place each piece on a dinner plate and drizzle with 1-2 ounces of pan gravy. Garnish with rosemary sprigs and lemon wedges. Serve immediately.