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Thursday, May 23, 2013

Easy Poolside Party Foods

Things to consider before choosing food for your party:

Temperature - Dairy foods and dips can spoil easily in high temperatures.
Utensils - Using one utensil will allow guests to stand. 
Preparation/clean up - Guests and hosts enjoy an easy prep/clean up.
Quantity/cost - Choose foods can you mass quantify, with the least cost.

On the Menu

The Kabob:  The skewered, traditionally simple to eat as an appetizer, main dish and even dessert.  The Kabob allows you to quickly fill your plate or hands. 
Appetizer - Cheese cubes, pickles, folded lunch meats and grapes. 
Main Dish - Grilled chicken cubes or beef as your protein.  Add veggies like cherry tomatoes, onion, mushroom, peppers, potatoes, carrots, zucchini, squash and even broccoli. 
Dessert - Fruits like pineapple, oranges, peaches, cherries, cantaloupe, strawberries, and grapes.  Provide a whipped topping or melted chocolate for additional pleasure.  

The All American:  Quite possibly the most historical backyard meal is the good ole’ fashioned cook out. 
Appetizer - An assortment of chips, dill pickles and even fresh veggies.  
Main Dish - Hamburgers and hotdogs are not only easy to eat, they’re easy to please.  Offer an array of condiments for guests to embellish at their delight.  
Dessert - Frozen fruit bars in a cup, ice cream cups or small cupcakes to tantalize your guests.  

The Platter:  The patchwork quilt assortment is sure to satisfy.  Guests will fill their plates and go back for more.  This route usually has the appetizer, main dish and dessert all out at the same time.  
Appetizer - Carrots, celery and broccoli with a hummus dip or other non dairy choice.  Another party favorite is tortilla chips with salsa and guacamole.   
Main Dish - Meat slice trays or small sandwiches.  Be sure to include condiments.  Pita wedges and pita chips with various hummus dips are an excellent option for all people, including vegetarians and vegans. 
Dessert - Use various fruits on trays with chocolate sauce and or a plate of several varieties of cookies.  

The Grab & Go:  Grazers will flock, swim, play, chat and repeat.  By far the easiest in terms of cost and preparation, the grab & go will please your guests and your pocket book
Appetizer, Main Dish, and Dessert unite - Pretzels with mustard, Chex mix, nuts, popcorn, cheese puffs, veggie straws and M & M’s.