{stories and snapshots from my new york city life.}


Party Pics: The Food

I take several things into consideration when planning a party menu. 

1. The Season. Clearly, I'm not going to be serving chili and cornbread at a July garden party. Hot weather = light, cool foods that won't get funky in the summer sun.

2. The Occasion. Football viewing in February? I went with pulled-pork sliders and bacon-wrapped jalapenos. Grandparents' 60th anniversary party? Upscale island fare with lots of fresh seafood, fruit, and veggies. 

3. My Guests. It's pretty tough to please every palate, but if I know a lot of vegetarians or health-conscious eaters are going to be attending, I try to be accommodating to their preferences.

All things considered (hot, sticky weather + 30-something birthday + plenty of healthy-eating friends), I came up with a DIY, mix-and-match menu of customized crostini, salad, and pasta with assorted toppings.

Planning what food went in what bowl/platter ensured I wouldn't need to make any last minute trips to Target the day of the party.

I made a menu with recommended combinations for the salads and crostini. 

Farfalle with homemade basil pesto

Baked basket with crostini

Artichoke pesto: phase 1

Roasted red peppers

Spreads for customized crostini: goat cheese, artichoke pesto, white bean dip and bruschetta topping

Roasted stone fruit to pair with walnut-honey pesto

I used these templates from marthastewart.com to make tags for the food

Light, healthy and I didn't have to spend the party behind a stove. Just the way I like it.


  1. What a gorgeous feast! You've made me really hungry now. Also, pulled pork sliders! Yum! We don't have sliders over here but I'm coming to NYC for a week in September to get my fill! x

  2. Everything looks great! Living in South Florida, I'm always looking for light foods that keep me away from the stove. What a great menu. I may have to borrow it for my next get-together.