It may be the cover of the current New Yorker that’s causing such a stir, but folks of a more food-obsessed bent will gravitate toward the Shouts & Murmurs section, where Yoni Brenner provides recipes for “Fourteen Passive-Aggressive Appetizers.” Some are really simple to prepare:

Top thick slices of country bread with fresh goat cheese. Sprinkle with herbs and bake until crusty; serve to everyone but Jeff.

Others are more time-consuming and create a bigger mess:

Tempura makes great finger food, and the batter locks the flavor of just about anything in a savory, opaque crust. Impress your friends with creative choices, from squash blossoms to mislaid car keys to the two-carat engagement ring that Cheryl gave back to you after she ‘reassessed things.’ Surprise!

(Looking for a great batter to try this yourself? Here’s one.) Whether you go simple or fancy, though, if you use any of these recipes, you’re sure to create a memorable party.

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