All Posts In Entertaining

6 Tips for Hosting Your Child’s Birthday Party Without Losing Your Mind

by in Entertaining, Family, September 11th, 2015

6 Tips for Hosting Your Child's Birthday Party Without Losing Your MindWe have four young kids and the oldest turned 6 this year. That means we’ve hosted 14 birthday parties — so far. With many, many more to go, we stick to these guidelines for fun parties without frazzled parents.

1. Invite a small number of kids. No one has fun at a party that feels like a mob. It’s loud. It’s chaotic. See above, it’s no fun. Remember that old rule about inviting as many friends as you are old? It’s perfect. Five, six or eight kids plus a parent each makes for plenty of revelers.

2. Create a simple theme or activity. Host a tea party. Or have everyone come in costume. This year our 4-year-old had a tea party where everyone wore costumes. Put together a scavenger hunt with hidden clues, a karaoke sing-along or outdoor Olympics based on simple games (like relay races, a water balloon shot put and so on). Pretend it’s 1988 and channel your mother; she put a Barbie doll in the middle of your cake and called it a day.

And by all means, put the birthday child to work. That same 6-year-old LOVED creating signs for her party, directing people where to go and telling people what to put where.

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Last Chance to Win Summer

by in Drinks, Entertaining, September 3rd, 2015

Labor Day weekend marks the last official hurrah for pool parties, cookouts, beach picnics and daily frozen treats. Before you start thinking about the return of crisp fall leaves and pumpkin spice everything, send the sunny season off in style with our eight genius ways to win summer. Watch the video below for inspiration. You’ll learn genius ways to spike snow cones and take ice-cream floats to the next level, three things you should be making with watermelon, how to make treats from melted ice cream and more.  Read more

7 Essential Snacks for a March Madness Viewing Party

by in Entertaining, March 18th, 2015

pimento cheeseMarch Madness is officially upon us. With round two of the games starting tomorrow, brackets are being finalized. Watching the games at the bar can be, well, madness. Crowded and rowdy with passionate (and loud) sports fan, bars are fun but overwhelming — an experience better left to students with their school pride on the line. Instead of pushing your way up to the bar for an expensive pint, gather your buddies for a viewing party at your place. It guarantees you a comfy seat on the couch, and it’s a total game changer in terms of snacking — soggy nachos and flavorless wings are disqualified.

Here are seven better-than-bar-food snacks to make for the big tournament:

University of Kentucky is entering the tournament undefeated. Honor the team’s success with a Southern snack staple: pimento cheese. Whether or not you’re a fan of the Wildcats, this spicy cheese spread (fittingly nicknamed Southern caviar) is winning grub for everyone — bitter Arkansas Razorback fans included. Follow Sunny Anderson’s recipe (pictured above), then serve it with bread for a ridiculously easy snack.

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Green Pizzas for St. Paddy’s Day, Plus 6 More Spring Pies

by in Entertaining, Holidays, March 16th, 2015

Pizza is the perfect food for entertaining — a crowd-pleaser with unlimited options for sauce, cheese and toppings. We started with one basic dough recipe and explored some creative combinations of ingredients that celebrate spring. If you’re willing to break with corned-beef-and-cabbage tradition, the naturally green pizzas are perfect for St. Patrick’s Day gatherings. Read more

The Bar Approach: Rachael’s Choice for Easy Entertaining

by in Entertaining, Food Network Chef, March 11th, 2015

Rachael Ray and Guy CusimanoWhen it comes to hosting a party at home, there are two groups of people: those who panic and those who prepare. If the mere thought of cooking for a crowd sends you into cold sweats, chances are you’re part of the first group, but it doesn’t have to be that way. All it takes to be prepared for your next big bash is having a plan for the meal, and for that, Rachael Ray likes the bar approach.

During a live demo with her husband at the South Beach Wine & Food Festival last month, Rachael dished on what she calls “a cheap and cheerful way to entertain.” She set up a bar of fixings for her chicken fajitas, like lettuce, radishes, cheese and crema, and explained that when re-creating the meal at home, each guest could be responsible for bringing just one portion of the spread. “Everybody can participate,” she said. That means that instead of all the pressures of the party — the shopping, the cooking, the plating (and the panic) — being put on you, the host, your friends can help out by contributing to the meal. And with everyone creating their own versions of their ultimate meal, like fajitas or tacos or pizza, you can be sure that each guest will get exactly what he or she wants.

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What Not to Do: Party-Planning Edition

by in Entertaining, March 7th, 2015

What Not to Do: Party-Planning EditionIt’s party time on this morning’s all-new episode of The Kitchen, and for a very good reason: Marcela Valladolid is getting ready to welcome her second son, and the cast celebrated the occasion by gifting her with treats, presents and plenty of well wishes at a baby shower. Before they surprised Marcela, the group dished on the most-pleasing plates for a crowd, plus a few go-to party favors, like Rosemary Thyme Salt and Sunny’s Blueberry BBQ Sauce, which would surely wow your guests.

FN Dish was on the set as the cast took part in Marcela’s baby bash, and in the spirit of throwing successful parties, we asked the co-hosts to share their ultimate entertaining advice and to reveal their picks for what not to do the next time you get set to host or attend a party. Read on below to get top tips from all five chefs.

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How to Host a Football Party

by in Entertaining, January 31st, 2015

By Camille Styles, Photography by Molly Winters

It’s the biggest game of the season, and even if your home team isn’t playing, chances are you plan to tune in along with the rest of America and have already chosen which team you’ll be rooting for. For this year’s Super Bowl, go the distance by hosting a game-watching bash that guests will be cheering about until next season’s opening-day kickoff. Keep reading for easy breezy snack recipes, a perfect party punch and decor ideas that couldn’t be simpler.

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The Best Game-Day Snacks from Food Network Magazine

by in Entertaining, Food Network Magazine, January 30th, 2015

With kickoff just days away, it’s time to firm up your game-day spread. Don’t serve the same dip and wings you’ve been making all season long. Add something new for your championship lineup. Read on below to find five winning ideas from the January/February issue of Food Network Magazine.

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WATCH: The Do’s and Don’ts of Football Parties

by in Entertaining, Shows, January 30th, 2015

Even if your favorite team won’t be taking the field on Sunday, chances are you’re going to be vegging out in front of the TV with friends, and plenty of game-day eats and drinks, to watch the big game unfold. Just in time for those celebrations, The Kitchen co-hosts came together to offer a few good-to-know do’s and don’ts for both attending and throwing a winning football bash — or any get-together with a crowd. From how to build a worthy buffet to advice on ditching the six-pack of beer, click the play button on the video above to hear from the cast and learn their top tailgating tips.

For even more entertaining ideas, check out the cast’s best game-day recipes.

A Game-Day Brew for Every Team

by in Drinks, Entertaining, January 28th, 2015

By Cindy AugustineWhether your team is playing in the Super Bowl this weekend or you’re still holding out for next year, pick up a craft brew representative of your team’s hometown. We’ve got a beer for each NFL team and, if you’re cheering on the Patriots or the Seahawks this weekend, you can be sure there’s a best-bet bottle for each.

Tripel by Allagash Brewing
If you’re cheering on the Patriots this weekend, pick up Tripel by Allagash Brewing Company. Since the Patriots are a New England team, it’s only natural that fans opt for beer that comes from Maine — in this case Allagash Brewery, which launched almost 20 years ago. With Belgian techniques and styles, the brews are almost as popular as Tom Brady and his touchdown passes. The Tripel, with notes of honey and banana, is a fruity and herbaceous strong golden ale — a winner indeed.

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