Hostesses With The Mostest > Entertaining and Hospitality

What is your best/safest go-to menu?

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Softly Spoken:
Hi to all to would-be hosts/hostesses and guests here.  :)

I have never really hosted a party on my own, though I have been stuck in the kitchen for family holidays.  :P I also haven't attended that many parties, but when I do I want to be a good guest.

I have read so many posts here about food allergies, dietary restrictions and picky eaters. Maybe I'm over thinking and it isn't as hard as it seems, but if I were providing food for a party (hosting my own or bringing something to potluck), I would really want to make/bring something that as many people as possible could enjoy. I was wondering if anyone here has a dish they make or strategy they use that they have had good luck with. In your experience, what pleases the most people?

I know this is a big question and I'm sure there are a lot of factors I'm forgetting to put into the equation, but I would like a baseline "entertaining for dummies" sort of thing to build on for when I decide to be more social. ;D

What would you consider a 80-90% "foolproof" dish or dishes so that no one leaves a party hungry?

jedikaiti:
Bean Dip. It also has the bonus side effect of giving e-Hellions the giggles.  8)

Deetee:
Dinner party is tacos with lots and lots of toppings and a couple sides. Works for vegan through carnivore.  People assemble what they want and I can't think of any diet that it can't accomadate(short of medically restricted) with the right options.

 For party snacks veggies and dip , nuts, cheese, grapes are great

Basically, the less processed, the easier to feed people.

cheyne:
Enchiladas, beans, Mexican rice and a big green salad the first time someone comes over.  I make three different kinds of enchiladas; chicken, beef and cheese.  I have many recipes from my Mexican "mother" and love to serve authentic cuisine to people who have only eaten at Taco Bell or Chi-Chi's.

I make a mean lasagna with a mixed greens salad and garlic bread for a casual party (the lasagna can be made meat-free or with Italian sausage).

I don't know anyone who is vegetarian, vegan, gluten free or lactose intolerant.  I do have one dear friend who has type 2 diabetes, and I discuss the menu with him when I invite him over.  Most of my recipes can be changed-up with different ingredients if I would invite someone over with food issues. 

I will say that I would hesitate to invite a vegan for a meal as I don't have substitutes for butter, milk, cheese etc...nor do I have cookware that is separate for only non-animal product cooking.

SamiHami:
I have one lone recipe for a wild rice casserole that seems to be universally loved and doesn't seem to interfere with allergies/special dietary restrictions. If you are interested, PM me and I will happily share the recipe with you!

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