Chowgirls Killer Party Food: Righteous Bites & Cocktails For Every Season

Killer Party Food

After a dozen years in business together and having grown a company from just each other to a family of over 100, Chowgirls owners Heidi Andermack and Amy Brown finally had the opportunity to fulfill their lifelong dreams of writing a cookbook. As English majors, they had a nice head start; along with all those years of recipe writing for the business, they had a lot to say and the ability to say it well. Chowgirls Killer Party Food is the culmination of their past and future careers - Heidi’s as a writer and Amy’s as a bookseller and publishing professional. Arranged seasonally, the appetizer and cocktail recipes within represent both perennial Chowgirls favorites and a bounty of on-trend new ideas.

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About This Book

With an eye for style and appreciation for seasonal ingredients, the proprietors of Chowgirls Killer Catering, one of the Midwest’s leading catering companies, share their inspired ideas for delicious appetizers, small plates, and cocktails that are perfect for home entertaining. Amy Lynn Brown and Heidi Andermack were early adopters of the local, organic, sustainable, and seasonal approach to cooking; their ethos is clearly reflected in this cookbook, which offers fun, elegant, and yet easy-to-prepare recipes arranged by season that will be the hit of your next social gathering.

For your party to welcome spring, impress your guests with Spring Pea Toasts with Gouda, Mint-Crusted Lamb Chops, and Wasabi Crab Cakes. For that backyard summer fest, try Flank Steak Skewers with Chimichurri, Sweet Corn Risotto with Grilled Shrimp, and Gazpacho Jars. On that chilly fall gathering, offer the Grilled Sirloin with Farro Tomato Salad, Bacon-Pecan Tartlets, and Roasted Fall Vegetables with Saffron Aioli. And for that festive winter blow-out, make the Italian Beef Sliders, Crab & Green Chile Gratin, and Artichoke Tapenade. Then to wash it all down, make sure there’s plenty of Mint Julep Sweet Tea, White Sangria, and Strawberry Basil Daiquiris

Andermack and Brown’s shared passion for cooking and entertaining shines throughout this beautiful and inspiring cookbook. Their "righteous bites" will impress your guests with dazzling, organic, locally sourced recipes that show you care. Party on!

Heidi & Amy Lynn

Heidi and Amy founded Chowgirls Killer Catering in 2004 with a shared passion for cooking and entertaining. Publishing a cookbook has been an aspiration since they started the company. Twelve years later this dream has realized with the release of their first cookbook through Arsenal Pulp Press.

Heidi Andermack

Driven by a spirit of collaboration, Heidi Andermack is a passionate member of her community in Minneapolis, helping establish the Northeast Minneapolis Arts District and serving on the board of the Northeast Minneapolis Farmers Market. When she’s not in the kitchen or participating in very important meetings, she can be found throwing punches at Uppercut, her neighborhood boxing gym, or stretching her body and mind with yin yoga. Heidi is mama to Maximillian Gold, wife to world-renowned font designer Chank Diesel, and personal chef to Katy Bug and London Dog.

Amy Lynn Brown

Born and raised in Kentucky, Amy started a Northward journey in the mid-'90s and settled in Minneapolis, where she married an old college friend. After a 15-year career in bookselling and publishing, she co-created the iconic Chowgirls Killer Catering in 2004. Besides the obvious reading and cooking, she stays busy distance running, gardening, raising her three daughters, Frances, Louise, and Julip, and throwing Frisbees with her Blue Heeler, Miss Honey Sue.

Arancini with Sweet Potato Jam

Featured Spring Recipe

Spring Pea Toasts with Gouda

Sometimes the simplest concepts are the ones that get the most praise. The following crostini recipe is a favorite of ours for spring functions. It takes almost no time to prepare, is very inexpensive, and garners regular compliments and delight from guests for its bright flavor. For a more luxurious version, top each piece with Serrano ham or prosciutto.

Ingredients / Prep

  • 1 freshly-baked baguette
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 - 2 cloves garlic, peeled, whole
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh tarragon
  • 2 tbsp fresh-squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 cups fresh green peas, or frozen green peas, thawed
  • ¼ cup heavy cream
  • 2 tsp fresh lemon zest, plus more for garnish
  • salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
  • ½ cup fresh watercress or microgreens, for garnish
  • 4 oz Gouda, sliced thin

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Using a sharp bread knife, slice baguette, on a diagonal, into ¾ inch slices. Lay slices out onto a baking sheet and lightly brush them with olive oil. Bake on upper oven rack for 15-20 minutes, until edges are browned and crisp but centers remain slightly soft. Remove from oven, cool slightly, and rub each slice with garlic until aromatic. Allow to cool on baking rack.

If using fresh peas, bring 4 cups water to a boil, add peas and cook for 4 minutes. Drain immediately and rinse in very cold water. In the bowl of a food processor, add tarragon, garlic and lemon juice and cooled or thawed peas. Process 30 – 40 seconds until well-blended. Add cream, lemon zest, salt and pepper and continue processing until mixture is very smooth.

Spread a generous amount of puree on each crostini, top with watercress or microgreens, Gouda and lemon zest.

@chowgirlscatering - 6/25/17

"We’re big fans of our Seasonal Pesto Salmon with Pearl Couscous. We get to use ramps, fiddleheads, garlic chives, scapes, and other finds from our farmers to make a unique pesto that goes well with the preserved lemon and fresh herbs that we toss with the couscous." - Arianna Baker-Kern, Executive Chef #summerfood #seasonalfood Photo: @sipsavorsocial

@chowgirlscatering - 6/22/17

Work Day Inspiration at #Chowgirls HQ: "Do not check your soul at the door when you cross the threshold of your workplace. Whether you are a custodian or a CEO, practice work as sacred art. Respect comes not from the work you do, but the way you do your work." -Mary Manin Morrissey

About Chowgirls

Chowgirls Killer Catering is a women-owned, award-winning Minneapolis catering company using seasonal ingredients to create savory, sociable fare with a commitment to sustainability and thoughtful hospitality. Email us at to discuss your next event!

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