Friday, March 2, 2012

Rounding Out The Shower Buffet

If anyone ever leaves my house hungry, it's their own fault.  I always have far too much food for parties and usually will make some thing at the last minute because people are coming over or whip something up while people are there.  So of course the shower buffet overflowed with options.  But since some of the recipes aren't really that exciting, rather than detail them here, I'll just outline the rest of the food and link you to the recipes.

What I will tell you is that Pinterest was a huge help.  I created a board for the shower and a board just for appetizers.  I kept pinning anything I thought looked fun and tasty so a few weeks before the shower I really buckled down and decided what to make.  Having all the recipes pinned in one place with beautiful photos helped to cull down the menu and match flavors--or make sure I didn't overlap too many flavors.

My pasta salad is pretty good, but I liked the idea of keeping thing in finger food format.  So when I spied this recipe for Pasta Salad Skewers on Pinterest, I knew I would make that.  Super easy to make and such a fun and different way to get the same flavors.  They made for a pretty plate on the buffet and something just a bit different.

I wanted a recipe that was warm since most of the dishes were room temperature, as well as a little hearty without making it big.  Bring in this recipe for Big BBQ Lil Smokies from Stephanie O'Dea at Crockpot 365.  You know I love her and my crockpot, so I thought this would be a good way to bring some warmth to the afternoon, especially since I didn't know if it would snow that day (luckily it was sunny and warm--for February in New England at least).

Cindy is a huge cheese fan.  She's one of those people who if given the option will choose cheese over chocolate (I know, I don't understand either).  So I had to include a cheese platter with a nice variety of cheeses, wheat crackers and pita crackers.  Included was the remaining brie from the tea sandwiches, an extra sharp cheddar, smoked Gouda and a Havarti with dill.

What I really wanted to do was this, but I sort of ran out of time, energy and platters, so I opted for a fruit tray that included pineapple, cantaloupe, blueberries, green grapes and red grapes.  And I sort of ran out of room for the strawberries.  I'd also made this fruit dip, but since my platters got disorganized (This is what happens when I forget to post-it my serving dishes before the party.  Yes, I've done it.  Stop judging my organizational OCD--it works.), I just ended up putting the bowl near the fruit tray.  It worked.

I always include crudites at my parties because people want veggies if they are going to have sweets, and it's far easier to eat than a salad.  I used baby carrots and cut celery, radishes, and red peppers and included an easy dip of onion mix and sour cream.  Turned out perfect and went quickly after being refilled a few times.

A huge thank you goes out to my friends Erin and Stacy who helped me get all the dishes on the buffet before the party, and also a big thanks to Cindy who insisted on helping as well, despite it being her party.  And if you've enjoyed seeing the buffet this week, wait until next week when you see the desserts!

Happy Baking,
The Cookie Princess


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