The pandemic put all manner of life events on hold, from bar mitzvahs to baby showers.
Now that things have taken a turn for the better, however, many people are beginning to gather in person again. Good company and great conversation are no longer a thing of the past and hugs are making a comeback. Clearly, there’s never been a better time to host a dinner party.
Make up for lost time and impress your friends with these delicious recipes!
1. Smoked Salmon and Zucchini Bruschetta
If you’re looking for an easy appetizer recipe, this smoked salmon and zucchini bruschetta should do the trick. The entire thing takes less than an hour to make. Plus, you only need 11 simple ingredients and a fry pan, so cleanup will be a cinch.
First, melt the butter and oil and add shallots, garlic, fennel seeds and zucchini to the pan. Cook the mixture until it’s soft, remove from the heat and set aside to cool.
Then, transfer it to a blender and add the cream cheese, lemon zest and juice. Layer the spread on char grilled baguette slices and top with raw zucchini slices, salmon and chives.
2. Balsamic Glazed Caprese Chicken
Want a recipe that pairs nicely with the one above? Try whipping up a pan of balsamic glazed caprese chicken.
This dish is so flavorful and only takes about a half hour or so to make. Odds are you already have some — if not all — of the necessary ingredients in your kitchen, too.
Preheat your oven to 410°F and season the chicken thighs. Sear them over medium-high heat, remove from the pan and set aside.
Then, add the garlic, vinegar and brown sugar to the pan and stir to combine. Wait until the glaze has thickened before adding the chicken and tomatoes and sticking the entire dish in the oven. Bake for 30 minutes. Then, top with mozzarella, basil and more tomatoes before serving.
3. Lobster Cauliflower Casserole
Many people consider lobster to be a delicacy, which means it’s an excellent choice for special occasions like dinner parties.
Luckily, this recipe is both fancy and simple so you can serve up dinner in less than an hour without skimping on quality.
Bake your cauliflower for 35 to 45 minutes, tossing a few times throughout to ensure an even cook. Then, make a melted butter roux, stirring in the garlic and thyme until just fragrant. Add milk and whisk continuously until the roux is thick. Then, gently fold in the parmesan, cauliflower, lobster and parsley. Transfer to a casserole dish and serve with a side salad and bread.
4. Melt-in-the-Middle Fishcakes
Avid cooks who don’t have the budget for crab cakes can still impress guests with these melt-in-the-middle fishcakes.
The hidden center is full of mozzarella and exploding with flavor, but the best part is you can make them ahead of time so all you have to do is throw them in the oven before guests arrive.
First, prep and mash your potatoes. Then, boil the haddock in milk and add the fish to your bowl of mashed potatoes. Allow everything to cool before adding capers, parsley, lemon zest and egg yolks, mixing to combine. Shape into six patties, whip up the rarebit mix and add a generous teaspoon of filling to each pattie. Then, refrigerate them until you’re ready to fry, bake and serve up those tasty cakes for guests.
5. Goat Cheese and Beetroot Salad
Looking for the perfect side salad? Maybe you want to serve one as the main dish, instead.
Either way, this goat cheese and beetroot citrus salad is sure to fit the bill. While the recipe does call for a wider variety of ingredients, it is rather easy to put together and should be ready in less than an hour.
Mix the beetroots, oranges, grapefruit, cider vinegar, sugar and seasoning in a large bowl. Then, break up the quinoa in a separate bowl and add oil, brussel sprouts and seasoning. Make the dressing in a small jug. Then, toast your nuts and seeds in soy sauce, honey and oil. Mix the beets and fruit into the greens, toss with dressing and dill. Finally, top with the sticky nuts, goat cheese and remaining dill before digging in.
A Recipe for Success
Whether you’ve hosted a thousand dinner parties or only a small handful, this gathering will surely be one for the books. Ensure that it’s perfect in every way by choosing mouth-watering recipes everyone on your guest list will enjoy.
Remember to account for dietary restrictions, allergies and food sensitivities before you make a grocery list.
Most importantly, make more food than you think you’ll need.
The last thing you want is for someone to go hungry at your party, right?
So plan for multiple courses and prep extra just in case. As long as there’s enough food and drink, you’re bound to have a successful evening.