November-December 2022 - 36

HOME COOKING WITH MARY ANN ESPOSITO
The Holiday Dinner Party
H
Inviting your guests to bring a dish to share will make it special.
oliday gatherings with family
and friends are back after
a long hiatus of hunkering
down due to the pandemic.
So, is it any wonder that people want to
party in a big way? One of my favorite
ways to entertain during the holiday season
is to host an old-fashioned dinner
party, but instead of doing all the work
myself, I invite my guests to bring a dish
to share. That way everyone gets in on
the fun and " owns " the dinner.
The success of a dinner party is all
about details like what can be prepared
ahead of time, how to decorate the table,
what beverages to serve and how many
guests to invite.
For the bring-a-dish concept of a dinner
party, the host is responsible for the
beverages and the main dish, while the
guests have fun bringing sides, salad
or dessert. The main dish choice will
determine what sides are most compatible,
travel well and don't need a lot of
fussing like lots of time in the host's
oven or microwave.
My advice is to keep the guest list
short. Invite too many guests and someone
will invariably get lost in the conversation.
Eight is an ideal number because
food preparation is more manageable for
both the host and guests. Table size and
seating can also be a factor in determining
the number of guests.
For the holidays, something special
is in order when you want to make a
presentation statement. A beef Wellington,
a glazed ham, roast leg of lamb and
roast duck are all classics and require
lots of attention at the last minute. This
year with food costs being so high,
something elegant but won't break the
bank makes a lot of sense.
For me, a pork tenderloin rubbed with
herbs and spices, wrapped in slices of
bacon or prosciutto and served with fried
apple slices will do nicely. Pork tenderloin
is reasonably priced, and two will easily
serve eight people. An added bonus is that
the tenderloin can be prepped two days
before and popped into the oven before the
guests arrive.
BY MARY ANN ESPOSITO | PHOTOGRAPHY BY JOHN W. HESSION
34 New Hampshire Home | November/December 2022
Once the main dish is decided, guests
can bring something compatible to go with
it. For a pork tenderloin, roasted Brussels
sprouts, a mixed vegetable casserole, a
cauliflower and potato casserole, a rice
and mushroom casserole, or sautéed broccoli
are all great choices.
A green salad sprinkled with pomegranate
seeds adds a festive touch and for dessert,
nothing says holiday like a no-bake
ice cream cake. Let the party begin! NHH

November-December 2022

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of November-December 2022

November-December 2022 - 1
November-December 2022 - 2
November-December 2022 - 3
November-December 2022 - 4
November-December 2022 - 5
November-December 2022 - 6
November-December 2022 - 7
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