Archive for the ‘Dinner Club’ Category

More Dinner Club Ideas

January 20th 2010

1263697741828 e7883 More Dinner Club IdeasBy now you’ve found 5 other people who would love to do a dinner club with you, so what’s next? Decide how often you will meet. I suggest once a month. If you try to schedule it more than once a month, you  may find people bailing out more frequently. When it’s once a month, people tend to schedule around it.

Pick the person who will host the first one. Even if their apartment is too small, you can always lend them your large dining room, but everyone should get a a chance to pick a theme. A theme can be a color, a holiday, a country or region, even a movie. Last year my club did Spain, cheesy 70′s, porch picnic, and Cajun-Creole food.

For every dinner think of it as three courses, cocktail, and a few appetizers if you’ll be drinking before dinner is ready. If you don’t drink or have a member who doesn’t, still make a special drink that matches your theme, just make a blend of fruit juices, ginger ale, or even fresh made mint-limeade.

We usually do a soup or a salad, but you can have both if you want. Just make sure the portions are small enough that everyone can eat all the courses. The main course can be a one dish meal or you can flesh it out with a few veggies on the plate too. Dessert is often the centerpiece and make sure to have some coffee if anyone likes it.

If you’re planning your first one for February, a Mardi Gras theme would work well. There are tons of red beans and rice, gumbo, and jambalaya recipes you can choose from. Make a bread pudding with whiskey sauce if no one wants to brave making a king cake. Make hurricanes for your main drink using fresh juices and rum.

This month my club meets at my house. We’re doing a fondue night. I found an easy and healthier fondue recipe that uses pureed white beans as its base. It’s still cheesy, but chock full of nutrients and much less fat. I also use 2% cheese. I figure that leaves room for more chocolate fondue.

Before the night is over someone should volunteer to host next months. Everyone can throw out some suggestions for the theme or sign up to bring a certain dish. Set the date then if you can, it’s easier when everyone is in the same place. Most of all enjoy the night!

Posted by Myriam under Dinner Club & Hostessing & Party Food & Winter Entertaining | 2 Comments »

It’s a Great Year to Start a Dinner Club

January 13th 2010

fork Its a Great Year to Start a Dinner Club If you’re like me, you’re trying to recover from all the holiday spending. I went out to dinner so much that I was excited to finally eat at home again. And, of course, my waist was glad too!

It’s time to re-group and make monthly plans with friends to get back on the social track you enjoy. I love the holidays, but I end up doing to many things because I have to or I should. This year I want to bring in people that I enjoy spending time with and do less of the obligatory visits.

Last year six of us began a monthly dinner club that didn’t quite make it through the holidays. I think the last time we met was October. Now it’s 2010 and time to rev that puppy back up.

What’s a dinner club? It’s a less expensive way to get fancy night out. Only it’s in your or your friend’s house. It’s a great place to try out new recipes, drinks, or to show off your sengware dishes.

We limited our group to three couples. You can always have other dinner parties to accommodate your other friends, but this is a group planning effort. Pick your club members carefully. Do they love food and cooking? Show up when expected? If they hate cooking or are picky eaters it could cause too much drama in this kind of setting. You will also need to get input from any other members of the group before you add the next person. It’s important for the group to jell together for the long run.

Mine started up at my 2009 New Year’s Eve dinner party. Six of us complained that we didn’t see each other enough and were praising each other’s cooking. We decided to meet one Saturday night a month. The host would rotate through each couple so everyone got to be a guest as well.

We each bring a dish or two from a pre-determined menu. In our group the host determines the theme, and guests decide what they would like to bring. We do this at the end of the current dinner club for the next month. Usually we have a main dish, some sides, salad, dessert, and a special drink of the night.

In my next post I’ll talk more about creating your dinner club and give you some sample menus. So make sure to check back later in the week!

Posted by Myriam under Dinner Club & Hostessing & Party Food | 1 Comment »