We've got a group called Savory Sights, where you can upload mouthwatering images of foods and drinks you've made, consumed, or just salivated over. Start sharing your photos now! There are lots of ways to participate, so read on to learn more.
We've got a group called Savory Sights, where you can upload mouthwatering images of foods and drinks you've made, consumed, or just salivated over. Start sharing your photos now! There are lots of ways to participate, so read on to learn more and check out the rest of my photos from happy hour.
What's your go-to meal for a last-minute dinner party?
To encourage you to host more dinner parties, I'm starting a new series where I plan an impromptu dinner party and take you along for the ride! If you love to cook and get an itch to entertain, call up your friends and invite them to dinner tonight. With my tips, recipes, and ideas, you will find that a fabulous party can happen without hours and hours of planning.
- Start by choosing a location and menu. We decided to make a big green salad and two pizzas: One Greek style vegetarian and another Spanish style meat.
- Create a grocery list. Shop for ingredients. Keep it hassle free. We picked up pizza dough from the neighborhood pizzeria.
- Create a game plan and delegate tasks. I was in charge of the pizza sauce and dough. Sasha was in charge of pouring wine and making the salad, Erica was in charge of setting the table and inviting friends, and my sister was in charge of music and mood lighting.
- Remember an impromptu party is not supposed to be stressful, it's supposed to be fun!!
To take a look at the recipes, pictures, and a video from the dinner, read more
It's easy to make too much food when hosting a party. It happens to the best of us. You over estimate guests' hunger or people who rsvped don't show. If you don't want to spend the next week eating leftover enchiladas from your Mexican fiesta, or a surplus of goat cheese frittata from your Sunday brunch, simply turn the leftovers into dips to serve at a future date:
- Blend or process the enchiladas/frittata/leftovers in a blender or food processor.
- Thin to the desired consistency with sour cream/yogurt/mayonnaise/condiment.
- Bake in the oven for a hot bubbly dip, and serve immediately with tortilla chips, crackers or croutons. Or freeze and unthaw at your next impromptu dinner party or when guests unexpectedly visit.
I ended up throwing an impromptu dinner party last Wednesday. Instead of panicking, I took a deep breath, came up with an easy, manageable menu, and wrote out a grocery list. If you ever find yourself on the hosting end of an impromptu dinner party, be sure to check out my no fail planning tips.
- For appetizers make one dip (I made a quick Sun Dried Tomato Dip that involved no chopping) and round it out with store bought goodies. Bowls of burst-in-your-mouth blueberries, salty black olives, crispy flatbread, and buttery french bread crisps can be plated in a matter of minutes. Chunk a few pieces of smoked gouda or other cheese and slice up some salami.
- Choose a menu that is quick, easy and meat-free in case any vegetarians unexpectedly show up. Fresh Basil Pesto with pasta and a Green Salad With Citrus Vinaigrette is a simple meal that can be put together in under an hour.
- For dessert, have everyone help out and make ice cream sandwiches.
- Ask your guests to bring a bottle or two of wine.
What do you cook for your last-minute dinner parties?? Share your menus with me below!
To take a look at a gallery of images from my middle-of-the-week dinner, read more
I've said this before and I'll say it again: I love dinner parties. I love intimate family dinners, elaborate planned meals with a group of select friends, and last night I was reminded of how much I love impromptu dinner parties. My mom ran into one of her best friends from college who asked us to come by her house for a quick drink. She lives in a beautiful house overlooking the bay and when we arrived, the house was filled with wonderful aromas of something delicious in the kitchen. Wine was poured, we got to talking and it turns out her husband had made a fresh pesto dish with basil fresh from his garden. He had the fixings for salad too and my dad happened to have a fresh baguette in his car that he had picked up at the Ferry building. I set the table in their dining room and BAM! instant dinner party! It was absolutely wonderful, good fun paired with fabulous food and company. But not everyone is like me and my hosts from last night, Dave and Michelle - so to learn a few tricks to pull off a successful last minute surprise dinner party, read more