Wednesday, July 27, 2011


One of the best things about summer entertaining is that you can just throw a bunch of great ingredients and foods together and call it a meal. I suppose you could do that year-round but to me, it always feels natural for laid back summertime get-togethers. With that in mind, here are links for no-cook, no-fuss recipes.

Sugar snap salad [via Lottie + Doof]
20 summer sandwiches [via Saveur]
Peach slush [via Eat Make Read]
Easy no-cook recipes [via iVillage]
Even more no-cook recipes [via Food52]

And from the Dinner Party archives:
Pineapple salsa

Tomato mango salsa Salami-wrapped Mean Beans
Tuna-stuffed peppers
Kitchen sink summer salad
Summer melon with cucumber, basil, and feta
A heat-free dinner menu (and salmon salad)
Framboise ice cream floats

Monday, July 25, 2011

patio salad

It's too damn hot to cook. Our apartment is hovering around 100 degrees as I type this and the heat has not only killed my desire to get in the kitchen, it's killed my appetite. I just want watermelon, and smoothies, and white wine spritzers. Could you serve those things for a dinner party? Probably not.

But I do have a recipe for you, something I made when it was a downright breezy 85 degrees outside. It's a little dish I found on Food52 (from the blog Cooking After Five) called Patio Salad -- doesn't that sound delightful? It's more of a composed dish than a salad. There's a little tangle of salad greens, some white beans and croutons in pesto, and a little bit of salty prosciutto on the side. It is just the thing you'd want to graze on while you sit on a sun-drenched patio with a glass of white wine, wearing a big, floppy hat. Or in my case, in your hot as hell living room.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

friday giveaway: ball canning kit

If you want to try your hand at canning, don't do what Dan and I did in the beginning and use regular old kitchen utensils and burn your hands and get frustrated. Canning requires a few essential tools, like proper tongs and a strainer. Just in time for summer preserves and pickles, the nice folks at Ball are going to send one lucky reader a canning kit with everything you need to get started.

To enter, please "like" Dinner Party on Facebook (if you haven't already) or follow me on Twitter and leave a comment here. I'll pick a random winner by 6 PM E.S.T. Friday. (Sorry, U.S. and Canada residents only.) Good luck!

**According to the Random Number Generator, Carly is the winner! (Email me please, Carly.) Thanks for playing--have a great weekend!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011


Now that we're in the height of summer produce season you might want to hoard some of the ripe, juicy goodness to savor during the cold, miserable winter. If so, here are some summery canning projects to inspire you. (And if you lack the proper tools for canning, come back tomorrow for a special giveaway!)

Blueberry ginger jam
[Food in Jars]
Two takes on sour cherry preserves [Tigress in a Jam]
Strawberry conserve
[Eat Make Read]
And tips on making homemade jam [iVillage]


Garlic scape harissa [Tigress in a Jam]
Beet pickles [Food52]
Pickle recipes galore! [via Saveur]

From the Dinner Party archives:
Peach jam
Spicy dill pickles
Spicy pepper jelly

Monday, July 18, 2011

mojitos to go

When life (or your fire escape herb garden) gives you more mint than you know what to do with, it's mojito time. And if you're going to someone else's place for a summertime barbecue, as we did last weekend, it's mojitos to-go time!

This is how you do it:

Sorry, Thiis is howww we doo it! (This is how we do it.)

Thursday, July 14, 2011

vacation dinner on the fly

We specifically rented a vacation house so that we could cook a few meals instead of eating out at restaurants every night. Which always gets old and bloat-inducing after a few days, at least to me. I also like any excuse to cook in a kitchen bigger than my own, which is pretty much every kitchen.

But first we needed food. So Mom programmed the GPS to direct us to a local grocery store. We drove along many long, winding roads, not sure of where we were headed exactly. But that's part of the charm of being in the country, driving along traffic-free roads, enjoying the scenery, breaking for deer on the side of the road or a particularly crazy-looking yard sale.

Monday, July 11, 2011

fresh air

Living in a big city is great. But sometimes the best thing you can do for yourself is to escape it. And that's what we did. My parents flew up from Florida and we piled into a rental car and drove a few hours north to spend a long weekend in the country. As the city skyline became a distant backdrop, I could feel my shoulders relax. Fresh air will do that to you.

We rented a house, something I had never done before. Vacation houses are a bit of an adventure. There's no front desk to call when the cable goes out (which it did), no tiny soaps in the shower. But there was a comfy, overstuffed couch to sink into, a long, rustic dining table, and a pretty little backyard where we sat and drank wine almost every evening.

Friday, July 1, 2011

summer vacation

Hi, all. I'm taking a much-needed break to recharge my batteries someplace green. Be back soon!


Blog Widget by LinkWithin