Request: party planning checklist

Dear ones — does anyone have a shopping and check list for planning a reception — say for fifty adults — that you would be willing to share with me?

6 Replies to “Request: party planning checklist”

  1. a) How much cooking do you want to do?
    b) Will you have access to an oven?
    c) Cocktails, finger foods, sophisticated, fun, what?

  2. a) As little as possible.
    b) No.
    c) Finger foods, skewing sophisticated. For a Washington DC nonprofit open house. Hypothetically.


  3. Will see what I have of my old event stuff.

    My favorite pseuo-classy appetizer is tortellini, whole mushrooms and cherry tomatoes skewered on a satay skewer and marinated in italian dressing.

    Lettuce wraps filled with peanut sauce, water chestnuts, etc are also good. Put a sign up that they contain peanuts.

    IMHO, you can’t go wrong with a carved-out watermelon full of cut fruit and/or cheese.

    I also like hollowed out cherry tomatoes full of tuna salad. (But make sure to label it non-veggie.)

    Chocolate fountains are still very big, though my favorite dessert is an artful arrangement of graham crackers, marshmellows and chocolate bars surrouding a flaming can of sterno with bamboo satay skewers so people can make Smores. A little messy, but people love that and it makes quite the centerpeice.

    Of course, a cake decorated with your organization’s name or something is the classic. Costco’s cakes are quite good and mucho cheap.

    And that all is assuming a summer reception. If you need fall recipies, email me.

  4. Ditto on the tortellini skewers. They give good color and are easy to do.

    Other ideas:
    * curry chicken salad in baked wonton cups
    * salami/pesto cream cheese wedges

    Themes are good and make it easy to plan. Like a “50’s cocktails” party or “tea party” (for the latter: tea-based cocktails and then typical tea party foods — cucumber sandwiches and such)

  5. While I know you’re an absolute expert at getting the most for the least, I need a budget ballpark in order to make anything resembling a useful suggestion.

    * Tasteful cheese platter
    * Marinated mushrooms
    * Caprese salad on a stick (mini mozzarella, basil, and cherry tomatoes)
    * Shrimp cocktail is ridiculously in around here again; don’t know if it’s as big in DC
    * Asparagus wrapped with a little love knot of prosciutto
    * A twist on salsa — something like a summer cucumber and melon salsa can be very refreshing

  6. One more — I think the yummy ginger roulade at my wedding was simply a flatbread like lavash, spread with a cream cheese, a layer of pickled ginger, rolled and carefully sliced. It’s a little unusual but still very approachable.

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