Whether you go casual or elegant, we have all the tips and advice you'll need to host a warm, friendly, successful party. By Ann Taylor Pittman
Healthy Holiday Open House
In this season of giving, which I love, I find that one of the hardest things to give is my time. Holiday commitments may be fun, but they come fast and furious—they seem to crowd every moment—and leave little time for myself, let alone others.
My solution is not to back away from the chaos, but to throw a party.
I designed this open house menu for versatility: a dress-up evening or a casual day, a low-key Sunday afternoon drop-around or an elegant Saturday night, even a New Year's Eve. The dishes are small, full of flavor, suitable for adults or kids, and can be dressed up or dressed down. There's a lively mix of flavors and textures, from crunchy phyllo-wrapped asparagus to a creamy caramelized onion topping for crostini. Most are pick-up bites, both savory and sweet (including chocolate and peanut butter--coated pretzels that are completely addictive), with a heavier "anchor" pairing of pork tenderloin in herbed biscuits alongside a colorful roasted root vegetable salad.
The best part? This beautiful party menu, including drinks, comes in under $10 per guest. Now, that's reason to celebrate!