Simple recipes to use when cooking for a crowd

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If you’ve ever hosted a party, you know planning the menu isn’t easy.

Chef Patrick Hogan of Carlton’s Catering Company in North Carolina’s Crystal Coast is here to change that with a few simple recipes you’ll want to keep on hand for that perfect party.

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Kale Chips

Quick and Easy Way to put a healthy snack on your counter while you finish cooking for your

  • Fresh kale from the farmers market
  • Olive Oil, just enough to lightly coat the kale
  • Salt and Pepper, to taste

1. pre heat oven to 300 degrees
2. cut stems of kale and cut in to 1-2 inch pieces
3. lightly drizzle olive oil over kale
4. Sprinkle salt and pepper to taste or other favorite spice
5. place in oven for 20-25 minutes or until kale is completely dried and crispy

Grilled Green Bean Salad with Pumpkin/Sage Vinaigrette (Pair it with Local Catch-bass or speckled trout)

Great salad to prepare outdoors when it is still warm enough to crack up the grill or can be done
on a stove top grill/griddle or oven set at 500 degrees.

1 lb Green Beans, trimmed
1/4 lb Red Onions, julienned
1/4 lb Pumpkin, cubed and roasted till tender
1 cup Olive oil
4 tbl Sherry vinegar
4 ea Fresh Sage leaves
2 tbl Honey
1 tbl Dijon mustard

1. Pre-heat grill or oven (500 degrees)
2. Grill or roast green beans and red onions, separately as onions may take longer…3-5
minutes for green beans, 5-8 minutes for onions. (looking for some nice color or char marks
to add flavor without over cooking beans)… let cool.
3. Add softened pumpkin to blender with vinegar, honey, mustard and olive oil, salt and pepper.
Blend until fully incorporated.
4. Mix cooked green beans, onions and vinaigrette together and serve in bowl. Serve at room

Pamlico Sound Blue Crab Dip
Local catch, delicious and simple crab dip with a southern twist.

1 lb Blue crab meat, back fin or jumbo lump
Collard Greens, cooked (optional…recipe follows)
1 lb Cream Cheese
1 cup Heavy Cream
3 Tbl Old Bay seasoning
1 Tbl Mustard Powder
3 dashes Hot Sauce
12 each crostini

1. Set cream cheese on counter a few hours before mixing to come to room temperature…
easier to work with
2. Mix cream cheese, heavy cream, Old Bay seasoning, mustard powder and hot sauce until
fully incorporated
3. gently fold in the crab meat and collard greens (recipe follows) then place in an oven safe
casserole and cover with aluminum foil
4. bake at 350 degrees covered for 25 minutes, un cover and bake an additional 10 minutes
until top is a nice golden brown, serve with crostini

For Collard Greens:
1 bunch Collard Greens,
1/2 lb Bacon
1 quart Chicken Stock
2 Tbl Red wine vinegar
1/2 cup Sugar

1. In a large stock pot brown bacon leaving rendered fat in the pot. Add chicken stock, sugar
and bring to a slow boil.
2. Trim the stems from the collard greens, layer leaves, roll and cut into 1-2” pieces
3. Place collards in pot and simmer for 30 minutes
4. Remove collards, and bits of bacon, from pot and season with vinegar, let cool.


  • Day old french baguette or other bread
  • Slice and season with olive oil, salt and pepper
  • Bake at 350 degrees till golden brown, about 8-10 minutes. If too dry add more olive oil before serving
  • Can be done a day ahead of time