All Posts In Entertaining

6 Must-Do Tasks for Surviving Holiday Party Season

by in Entertaining, Holidays, View All Posts, December 5th, 2016

We love getting the most out of this celebratory time of year, but phew! All that holiday cheer can take a lot out of you. Factor in just a little more pre-planning (it will pay off, we promise) and self-care, and you’ll enjoy the season even more.

Pre-make all of your hostess gifts in one fell swoop.

A small handmade gift is always thoughtful — and often cost-effective, since you can make a bunch at once with just a few materials. Whip up a batch of kumquat limoncello, cranberry vinegar or Ina’s white chocolate lollipops, and you’ll never have to worry about showing up to a fete empty-handed.

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How to Make the Ultimate Cheese-and-Cracker Platter (Into an Edible House)

by in Entertaining, Recipes, Shows, December 3rd, 2016

Cheese and Cracker HouseAt holiday parties big and small, cheese-and-cracker platters are practically required. You can keep them simple with just some slices of your favorite cheddar and kid-friendly crackers, or you can dress them up, offering an array of fresh and funky cheeses and various trimmings. You can even ditch the platter notion altogether and instead opt for home construction when building your cheese-and-cracker setup, like the co-hosts of The Kitchen did on this morning’s all-new episode. With four walls, a stable roof and even pepperoni shingles, their Cheese-and-Cracker House is the ultimate in party-ready edible entertainment, sure to keep your guests chatting as they pick away at its exterior and interior.

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8 of the Speediest Thanksgiving Appetizer Recipes Ever

by in Entertaining, Holidays, Recipes, November 19th, 2016

Stuffed Dates with ProsciuttoThe appetizers you make for Thanksgiving dinner are arguably some of the trickiest to plan; after all, they kick off one of the most-important meals of the year. They should likely be more special than carrots and ranch, and they need to be hearty enough to satiate your guests, but they should not be so heavy that guests don’t want to eat that enormous meal that’s coming right up. Plus, your kitchen will likely be overrun with all manner of pots and pans on Thanksgiving, so when it comes to the hors d’oeuvres especially, the easier and faster the better. Enter: our fast-fix starter solutions. All eight of these recipes are ready to eat in 35 minutes or less, and they’re guaranteed crowd-pleasers — think cheese logs, shrimp cocktail and cheesy dip.

Cheese-Stuffed Dates with Prosciutto
With oven and stove space at a premium on Thanksgiving, you can be thankful that these eight-minute bites require only assembly — no cooking necessary. When it comes to the cheese, Giada De Laurentiis opts for a mix of rich goat cheese and creamy mascarpone.

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6 Clever Reasons You Should Break Out That Melon Baller

by in Entertaining, Recipes, August 7th, 2016

A melon baller is the sort of tool everyone has stuffed in a drawer, but we bet you rarely reach for it. Next time you find yourself stuck in a recipe rut, dig it out — and try one of these unique ways to use it.

Serve a Boozy Treat
Scooped melon bites already look adorable served in individual glasses, but then Jessica Merchant (the blogger behind How Sweet Eats) makes them even more irresistible: She douses them in a bright mixture of lime juice, honey, mint and rum.

Try it: Boozy Minted Melon Balls (above)

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How to Throw an Olympics-Themed Brunch

by in Entertaining, Recipes, August 5th, 2016

Olympics-Themed Brunch Spread

It’s the biggest event in international sports, so it’s only fitting to throw a themed party. If you’re not sure what to make, take inspiration from Food Network Magazine’s brunch spread worthy of a gold medal. Start with a classic Brazilian cocktail, then support your home team with a healthy schmear from the bagel bar. Finally, raise your fruit torch high and let the games begin!

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Mason Jar Mini Pies Make Summer So Much Better

by in Entertaining, Recipes, July 7th, 2016

You wouldn’t necessarily believe that “smaller is better” when it comes to summer fruit pies — but leave it to the reliably adorable Mason jar to convince you. While you might cast aside the metal lids in favor of sipping lemonade Pinterest style, they’re actually the perfect vessels for baking mini pies. Our recipe has blueberries and peaches — absolutely delicious topped with a melty scoop of ice cream. Good thing you can easily claim a portion that’s all yours.

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All Our Best Party Dips (Including Dessert Dip!)

by in Entertaining, Recipes, May 28th, 2016

Smoked Salmon DipEveryone loves dip. That’s just a fact of life. For your long-weekend partying pleasure, we’ve rounded up our favorite recipes for scooping and spreading. From appetizers to sweet desserts, you can do the dip at every meal, all weekend long!

Smoked Salmon Dip (above)
Nobody does a crudite platter quite like Ina Garten. To create an addictive savory spread for raw veggies, she starts with a base of cream cheese and sour cream, then mixes in fresh dill, horseradish and smoked salmon.

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The Potluck Rules: What to Take to a Summer Cookout

by in Entertaining, Recipes, May 25th, 2016

Crunchy Noodle SaladIf you’re headed to a cookout this weekend, don’t even think about showing up empty-handed. When choosing a dish to take, however, there are a few criteria that must be met to make transporting and serving a breeze.

Rule #1: Bring your dish in the same vessel you’ll serve it in.
Don’t take a bag of salad greens, then ask your host for a serving bowl, and don’t take a cake and ask for a stand. Pack up everything in (or take along) whatever you need to serve your dish. (Label anything you’d like back, or use disposable platters and bowls.) Bonus points if you take disposable serving utensils.

Ina Garten’s Crunchy Noodle Salad + More Summer Party Appetizers

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Top-of-the-Class Graduation Party Ideas

by in Entertaining, Recipes, May 9th, 2016

Tedious prep work and outrageously long cook times get an F in our gradebook. But before you throw in the towel and dial the caterer, take a look at our tips for a relaxed and inexpensive DIY graduation party. Whether your scholar just completed college or kindergarten, our tasty menu of easy, make-ahead dishes will score top marks with any audience.

Make-Ahead Mains

Burgers and hot dogs have long dominated the late-spring and summer entertaining scene, but this season we’re all in favor of make-your-own taco stations. Food Network Kitchen’s Sweet-and-Spicy Chicken and Steak Taco Bar is ideal for a casual open house. As new guests arrive, warm more tortillas and replenish your bowls of Monterey Jack, lime wedges and corn salsa. Don’t grill all of the meat at once: The chipotle-marinated chicken and steak cooks up in just 10 minutes on the grill, so leave some of it marinating in the fridge for guests who arrive later.

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A Tea Party Fit for Mom

by in Entertaining, Holidays, Shows, May 7th, 2016

A Tea Party Fit for MomIf you’ve dropped the Mother’s Day ball this year and forgotten to pick up a present for Mom, you’re in luck, because it’s not too late to invite her to a tea party in her honor. On this morning’s all-new episode of The Kitchen, the co-hosts used everyday craft supplies and garden-fresh fixings to create a sweet atmosphere with the decor, and assembled a menu of can-do recipes. Read on below to see what they made and learn how they did it.

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