Author Topic: Your Most Successful Party Ideas  (Read 1629 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Venus193

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 15634
  • Backstage passes are wonderful things!
Your Most Successful Party Ideas
« on: March 20, 2013, 10:31:40 AM »
Mods, if this is in the wrong folder, please move it.

I admit I copied this idea from someone else who did it for Christmas, but I prepared a Baked Potato Bar for St Patrick's Day this past weekend.  Potatoes were fist-sized with a plan of 2.5 per guest (adults, mostly over 30).  75% of them were consumed.  The toppings:

Creamed onions (Birdseye)
Creamed spinach (Seabrook Farms, frozen)
Steamed broccoli and cauliflower
Cheddar cheese sauce*
Beef and bean chili*
Chicken a la king*

*Prepared from scratch.

This was a change from previous menus, but we did keep the devilled eggs and Knorr spinach dip; those two items always succeed.  One guest brought some incredible crusty bread and another a wheel of brie.  Dessert was my Grasshopper Pie and the Mandarin Orange Pie, per my earlier post, and some Entenmann's crumb cake.

Zilla

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 6506
    • Cooking
Re: Your Most Successful Party Ideas
« Reply #1 on: March 20, 2013, 10:38:42 AM »
We did a salad and taco bar that was pretty successful.  I had soft/hard shells/tortillas.  And I provided 3 kinds of meats, a few cheeses, guacamole, salsa,crema and sour cream plus a quite a few hot sauces and salad dressings.  People either had a salad or tacos or both.  I also served rice and beans and refried beans.


I was able to prep the day before and just lay it all out on a counter before the party.

cicero

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 16936
Re: Your Most Successful Party Ideas
« Reply #2 on: March 20, 2013, 10:44:14 AM »
I've done sandwich fixin's:

good bread/rolls/baguettes
spreads (e.g., tapanade, pesto, something spicy)
then either an assortment of meats and veg OR cheeses and veg (my house is kosher so we don't mix the two). so it could be sliced beef, turkey breast, chicken patties, shredded lettuce, onion rings, tomato slice, pickles OR different cheeses, smoked salmon, tuna, egg slices and veg

I've also done felafel:
pita pockets or the lebanese style pita (larger and thinner, no pocket)
hummus
tahini
assortment of salads and relishes (spicy tomato, spicy carrot, cole slaw, pickles, pickled hot peppers, chopped tomato and cucumber salad, fresh fennel, beets, etc)
and of course- felafel patties.
dessrt could be something like baklava, kadaif, etc

            Created by MyFitnessPal.com - Free Weight Loss Tools

Outdoor Girl

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 12898
Re: Your Most Successful Party Ideas
« Reply #3 on: March 20, 2013, 10:48:09 AM »
I've done 'Make your own Pizza' parties, even with adults.  I prep all the toppings - onion, peppers, tomatoes, pepperoni, bacon, olives, etc., have various spices and herbs available, sauce and cheese.  Then people get their base and go through the line, assembly style, putting on the toppings they want and then I bake them.  Now you can't do this with a huge group - I can get about 8 personal pizzas in my oven at once - but it is a lot of fun.  Serve with an assortment of beer and/or red wine.
I have CDO.  It is like OCD but with the letters in alphabetical order, as they should be.
Ontario

Mithril

  • Jr. Member
  • *
  • Posts: 14
Re: Your Most Successful Party Ideas
« Reply #4 on: March 20, 2013, 09:40:55 PM »
I've done make your own pizza, and make your own quesadillas.  Indian food is a great way of serving a crowd buffet-style as well.  The sauciness of a lot of the food stands up well to chafing dishes.

One great dessert was this: fried donut holes served hot out of the fryer.  I put them in a bowl in the center of a fondue setup with all the side bowls filled with homemade chocolate sauce, lemon curd, jelly, etc.  Nobody has a problem with fresh donut holes, and people got to dip and spoon as they liked.

Minmom3

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 2355
Re: Your Most Successful Party Ideas
« Reply #5 on: March 20, 2013, 10:56:46 PM »
I've done 'Make your own Pizza' parties, even with adults.  I prep all the toppings - onion, peppers, tomatoes, pepperoni, bacon, olives, etc., have various spices and herbs available, sauce and cheese.  Then people get their base and go through the line, assembly style, putting on the toppings they want and then I bake them.  Now you can't do this with a huge group - I can get about 8 personal pizzas in my oven at once - but it is a lot of fun.  Serve with an assortment of beer and/or red wine.

We did this for a kids birthday party once.  I made 3 batches of pizza dough in the bread maker.  I polled all the future attendees for desired toppings (lots of people like things I can't abide on pizza, so I wanted to make sure I had stuff for every kid coming).  Then I rolled out all the little crusts and put them on dinner plates and let everybody load their own and then they went in the oven.  I don't remember how many went in at each time.  It worked beautifully, and the kids still talk about it sometimes, during 'party reminiscing' times.  It would have been done in the early 90's, and everybody is now in the mid 20's to early 30's, but they have fond memories of it.  It meant a lot to them that I went to all that trouble, and it was fun for them to do - always a nice mix.
Mother to children and fuzz butts....

Cattaby

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 229
  • Friendly Cat. Fully litter trained.
Re: Your Most Successful Party Ideas
« Reply #6 on: March 22, 2013, 09:51:52 AM »
I did a Cluedo party once. Everyone dressed up as their own made up character (with appropriate colour name) and were given the typical Cluedo sheet to fill in.

There were various puzzles around the house (riddles, physical puzzles, crosswords, etc) and the solution to each one let you cross off either a weapon, room or suspect. The remaining 3 answers were the murder weapon and room and the 'winner' had to rush  back to the staircase to announce it. They were given a big envelope that had the correct answer inside.

It was a great night for all and fantastic for getting groups of relative strangers interacting.

jpcher

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 8476
Re: Your Most Successful Party Ideas
« Reply #7 on: March 22, 2013, 07:12:57 PM »
I loved the parties that I had catered! ;D Until my local restaurant closed down :'( (I didn't even bother trying a different place. The service/food/price was out of this world.) The food was great, the guests were pleased and it was soooo much easier on me! This was when the DDs were younger (before they were 10 yrs. old) and usually coincided with their huge-bash Bday party when there were easily 60+ people in attendance. (DDs are 2 yrs, 1 day apart, so we only had 1 Bday-bash party.)


I think the most successful Bday party was a "Party In The Park -- Fear Factor style" 8) when the DDs turned 11 & 13. My mother, Niece, friend and I took close to 20 kids to the local park (a block away) and had the "kid" party there while LDH was grilling burgers and hot dogs for the family members and adult friends that gathered at our house. It wasn't so much the menu that was a success, it was the inventive Fear Factor style games for the kids that was a huge hit! (Does anybody remember Fear Factor?) We had a lot of fun that day! ;D



As far as menu goes, I think the most successful was the Taco Bar party* that we threw last year for the day after Thanksgiving. I think that the DDs being old enough to help me plan, shop, clean and cook is a huge factor for a successful party.

Menu:

Salsa
Guacamole
Goat cheese/pistacio covered grapes
Crackers, Tortilla chips, pepper jack, cheddar cheese
Steak fajitas, Lime flavored Chicken, Ground Beef**
Both hard and soft taco shells
Lettuce, cheese, hot & mild peppers, onions (vidalia and green), sour cream
(I was sorely disappointed that my black beans bit the dust due to my crock pot deciding to die on that day. :'()

All of this was home-made with major help from the DDs, and several days in advance to prepare.

The best compliment I received was from Niece, who was originally suppose to host in her new home, but her move-in date was pushed back. Niece said "You know, Aunt JP, I was going to do a taco bar. But this party put me to shame." I said "You can do a taco bar!" She said "Not like this, I can't!" I told her that she could borrow the DDs anytime she wanted to host a party. The extra help makes all the difference in the world! ;)



*I posted here for recipes and ideas for the taco bar, of which, I used many. Thank you all, again! ;D

**The ground beef was the only thing that I used a packaged pre-seasoned mix for.

JenJay

  • I'm a nonconformist who doesn't conform to the prevailing standards of nonconformity.
  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 5400
Re: Your Most Successful Party Ideas
« Reply #8 on: March 22, 2013, 07:32:18 PM »
According to my family the best party I threw was one of DD's birthday parties where I had a "make your own sundae" bar instead of cake. I bought a huge tub of vanilla ice cream and regular tubs of strawberry and chocolate. I had hot fudge, chocolate and butterscotch syrups, and caramel sauce. Bananas, sliced strawberries, whipped cream, chopped nuts, several types of candy sprinkles and of course cherries. It was a lot of fun!

POF

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 2528
Re: Your Most Successful Party Ideas
« Reply #9 on: March 22, 2013, 07:39:24 PM »
My XMAS Italina Buffet is usually very well received.

From Scratch Lasagna with Bolognese Sauce

Cheese Manicotti

Chicken Marsala

Antipasto Salad

Great Italian Bakery Bread

Sauteed Green Beans and Wax Beans

Calzone

mmswm

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 1949
Re: Your Most Successful Party Ideas
« Reply #10 on: March 22, 2013, 08:06:57 PM »
My Halloween parties are always a hit.

In this picture you can see the Mummy Bread, Meatball Rats, Intestine Rolls, Celery Mummies, Deviled Egg Eyeballs (the picture doesn't get the bloodshot part of the whites very well) and the corner of the Bowl of Bones (chicken wings).


A better picture of the eyeball eggs.


Here is a (partially eaten) Mummy Man.  He's made of port wine cheese and cream cheese.


Eyeball punch


Eyeball punch after a bit of dry ice has been added.


Cauliflower "brain" is what's in the front left here.  This is a different year than most of the other pictures.  You see the meatball rats again here.



Rohanna

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 2311
Re: Your Most Successful Party Ideas
« Reply #11 on: March 22, 2013, 08:09:54 PM »
I did a "weird food" potluck once- with the "Gallery of Regrettable Food" as inspiration. It was quite the hit (though I had a few "regular" items to make sure everyone had somethign to actually eat if things that looked regrettable also turned out to be inedible"). Most of the food actually got eaten, with the exception of a vegetable jello mold - that won the trophy for most egregiously terrible item.
My friends, love is better than anger. Hope is better than fear. Optimism is better than despair. So let us be loving, hopeful and optimistic. And we’ll change the world. ~ Jack Layton.

sweetonsno

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 1269
Re: Your Most Successful Party Ideas
« Reply #12 on: March 23, 2013, 05:28:25 AM »
This is obviously one I did when I was a kid, but everyone seemed to have fun. I hosted a "Double Dare" party one year.

I don't remember all of the events. There was race in which you had to run with Jello cubes between your toes. We had to fish coins out of blue tapioca (whoever got the penny with a certain year won or something). There were a few other events that I don't remember at the moment, but it really was a blast.

Minmom3

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 2355
Re: Your Most Successful Party Ideas
« Reply #13 on: March 23, 2013, 09:24:24 PM »
I think my most disgusting (and successful) party item EVER was the eyeball cake I did one year for DD#2, whose birthday is October 14th.  I don't remember what I did to shape it, but I baked a 3 layer cake in Pyrex so it really was a dome shape, no sculpting needed.  Then I made buttercream frosting.  Most of it was cream/nude for the white of the eye.  But SOME of it was deep red, for the 'bloodshot' eyeball effect, and then I made a little bit in a grey/green, as close as I could come to DD's actual eye color.  It was PERFECT, if I say so myself.  Awful...   :o  It was for 4th or 5th grade, I don't remember, but a few of the girls wouldn't touch the cake because it creeped them out.  I'm sure it didn't help that I made Jello Jigglers worms in a beige and a REALLY ugly grey green.  I LOVED it all, but a lot of the girls were squeemish and wouldn't touch them.  I think we did T-shirt decorating for a craft, and I ran out because more children came than were invited...   >:D
Mother to children and fuzz butts....

mechtilde

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 5528
Re: Your Most Successful Party Ideas
« Reply #14 on: March 24, 2013, 09:15:13 AM »
I did a mouldy cake covered with buttercream sprinkled with a little cocoa and icing sugar, with gummy mushrooms.
NE England