My mom recently asked me, “Remember when you were little and you used to sit and ‘plan parties’ for hours??
“I forgot ALL about that!”, I yelled in a high-pitched voice. She was referring to my preteens when I would grab a notebook, plant myself at the kitchen table, and write down ideas for theme parties. What 12-year-old does that?? Well, this one did, and loved every minute of it. It didn’t occur to me until my mom reminded me that I’ve been doing this all my life; FoodForTheFace.com finally gives me an outlet for all my otherwise useless ideas.
Recently, I finally got a chance to plan a party for my mom. When I moved away a few years ago, I left my Sex and the City DVD collection behind with her, saying, “You should give this show a try; I think you’d like it.” The rest is history, and now she’s hopelessly addicted to the entire series. She once said to me, “I wish you lived nearby so I could have you and your sisters-in-law over once a week for Sex And The City and wine!” Right then and there, I decided to throw this very party for her next birthday.
The party itself was not a secret, but the theme was! As she walked into her party through a curtain of bright pink streamers, the jazzy theme song played, revealing the evening’s concept. “I LOVE IT!” she exclaimed, her face lighting up. Upon her arrival, I handed her a birthday present, a small box containing four wine charms (she collects them), each with a face of one of the four SATC girls. We put them to use immediately so we knew whose martini glass was whose. I’ll give you more information on those charms later.
We spent the evening in our PJ’s, drank cocktails, put the TV show on in the background, and played “Never Have I Ever”. Between hyperventilated breaths, the guest-of-honor forced out the words, “I haven’t laughed this hard in years!!” It was probably one of the most fun parties I’ve ever been to.
This menu is intended to be finger-foods that aren’t too heavy or filling, but are still hearty and satisfying. The whole spread is perfect for a Bachelorette party, a birthday party, New Years Eve, or a girls’ night in.
Let’s start with the snackish appetizers!
New York Bagel Chips & Dip
“New York is the 5th character”, they’re always saying.
Drain the brine of a jar of pimento-stuffed green olives. Refill the jar with dry Vermouth and/or gin and put them back in the fridge to “marinade” for at least a few hours. It’s as easy as that! These were delicious alongside some cheese and crackers. You could serve them like this on a bamboo skewer, or pile them into a martini glass, with toothpicks nearby.
Harry’s Kosher Pickles
I was once in a committed relationship with Chris Noth in my imagination. He’s great, he’s so great; eventually I just had to let him down easy and move on, you know?
Cocktails are mandatory at this party, and I chose to feature four signature drinks:
The first two were made in pitchers, making it easy for everyone to help themselves. I’ll include links to the recipes used for those two drinks. They can absolutely be made a day in advance and stored in the refrigerator until it’s party time.
A classic Cosmopolitan– what else? Click here to see how to serve this to a thirsty crowd.
“Sex on the Beach”. Find a recipe for a pitcher here.
Keep hard cider and a bottle of Fireball cinnamon whiskey on ice. This way, anyone who wants the Miranda has control of how much cinnamon kick he or she would like.
For the garnish, thinly slice a red apple and soak the slices in lemon water. Drain them just before party time and serve them alongside the drink station for guests to pick up and garnish their drinks.
A great alternative for ‘The Miranda’ would be Manhattans, if Fireball isn’t your thing.
It’s a good idea to have a mocktail for those who don’t drink, or just for when your guests want to pace themselves. Remember, Charlotte can’t hold her alcohol.
“The Charlotte” can be so many things: pink lemonade and sprite, grapefruit juice and tonic, or any punch. I chose to go with sparkling grape juice and maraschino cherry juice. Like the Miranda, I let guests choose their own proportions of each. I kept it simple, but if you’d like to add a garnish, some great adds would be edible flowers, a maraschino cherry, a lemon twist or a halved strawberry.
As promised, here’s the link to the Etsy shop where I bought the wine charms. They were one of a kind, but I bet the shop owner would make another set for you if you ask!
On to the more substantial segment of the menu!
Aiden’s Country Sandwiches
These were even better than I expected. All I did was make mini biscuits and sandwich in thick, rustic slices of country ham, and add a smear of red pepper jam/relish.
Don’t hate me–
Now for dessert!
Miranda’s “I Love You” Cookie
As a great time-saver, I purchased peanut butter cookie dough and pressed it into a lightly grease pie plate. Then I added the chocolate chips and baked it to a perfect golden brown.
“I panicked and ate the entire thing! If it wasn’t there, I wouldn’t have to deal with it.”
Samantha’s Pearl Thong Cookies
These were probably the biggest hit at the party. I used a heart-shaped cookie cutter to make sugar cookies and sliced off the point of the heart before baking. When the cookies were cooled, I drew on a “thong” with some black royal icing, and quickly added a row of edible pearls before the icing dried. These looked great served on a ‘bed’ of pink sugar.
“‘Knit one, pearl two’ would never sound quite the same to Charlotte again.”
Mr. Big’s Tuxedo Cake
The grand finale served as that night’s birthday cake. To be honest, we were all having so much, uh, “fun”, I doubt many of us remember the cake even being brought out, but I can tell you it was delicious the next day. It’s nice and rich, so it will probably feed 8-10 people. I found this looker at Costco, and it fit the party just perfectly, especially after I placed some pink birthday candles on top.
Throw this party with your best girls or boys. I hope you have every bit as much fun as we did! Bottoms up!
Magda’s Ukranian Salad
Harry’s Cheese Dreidels
Stanford’s Rainbow Veggie Pinwheels
Miranda’s Cold Noodles– This would be perfect portioned into bites. Roll the noodle salad up in spring roll wrappers with a slice of avocado.
New York style pizza
Use stilettos as balloon weights
Pink and silver napkins
“One long, pink, perfect rose”.