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Mar 24, 2009 10:43 AM

Help with 50th birthday party food ideas

I am in need of some ideas for "heavy" appetizer ideas/themes for a party I am throwing on Saturday night for about 14 people for my husbands 50th birthday. I am going to be doing a cocktail/appetizer type get together and am not sure what exactly to make.
I was thinking a Mexican theme but ran out of recipes that I could do ahead of time and that were not too similar. I really am open to husband loves Mexican, Italian, Japanese. Any ideas would be greatly appreciated!

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  1. A menu from a Dia del Morte party - mini/individual nachos, mini tacos, stuffed jalapenos, corn salsa served in zucchini cups, chicken meatballs, mini empanadas, chunks of tenderloin on skewers with tomato, boiled shrimp, cheese plate, crudites plate, sauces (fresca, guac, mole, verde, roja), breads, and chips.

    Other themed parties I've given- Kid's Party for Adults, Harvest (probably wouldn't work here!), All American, NOLA, Asian (Recall!), Luau, English (eg mini beef wellington's).

    2 Replies
    1. re: alwayscooking

      alwayscookin': do you mean Dia de los Muertos (11/2)? I only ask because I'm a Day of the Dead baby and am very partial to that holiday. I'm with you on fun Mexican fare...though, jello, maybe go easy on your man and just say you're celebrating Cinco de Mayo in advance. ;) I love my dancing b'day skeletons, though. They're very festive!

      For beverages, straight up margaritas are excellent, but I love making them with ruby red grapefruit juice (sometimes I squeeze fresh, sometimes I buy). Sangria is another great option as you can make it in advance and easily serve from pitchers instead of hand-mixing drinks.

      You can add cornbread to your Mexi-mix. I recently posted 2 recipes on this board for cheesy cornbread and sweet corn cakes. They are my tried and true go-tos.

      Have a great party!

      Edit: Though not gourmet, nothing goes faster at a party than a piping hot dish of taco dip...cream cheese on the bottom, then a can of chili (obviously, your own chili makes it even better, but you get the idea), top with shredded cheese and serve with tortilla chips. The dip that eats like crack! :)

      1. re: kattyeyes

        Yep - that's the day! And I forgot the most important part - the margaritas! The cornbread would have been a great idea as would be the bean(ish) dip. I might tweak the menu and serve it for the big fall party. Thanks

    2. I think you're on the right track with the Mexican theme --

      How about different types of ceviche with small tostada rounds? Another easy make ahead is a tortilla soup bar -- a crock of broth and then all the fixins: corn, onions, shredded chicken, tomato, chiles, tortilla strips and coffee mugs to serve in.

      If not, Italian is an easy one: ravioli with dipping sauce(s), creamy tortellini, a roasted veggie platter sprinkled with balsamic and a bruschetta spread with 3 or 4 different types for people to choose from.

      Have fun!

      1. you might consider a 1959 party--a pitcher of martinis or manhattans, rumaki, a poo-poo platter, cold shrimp cocktails...

        well--you get the idea. have you got a june cleaver apron that goes with heels?

        1. Do a large Baked Tamale stuffed with his favorite goodies. Very traditional in parts of Mexico. Lay down a sheet of tinfoil about 2 ft long. Lay on that your corn husks. Mix up masa harina, lard and water for the dough. Spread the dough about 1/2 thick on the corn husks. Down the center lay your filling - shredded chicken rice, beans, whatever. Then roll it up like a jelly roll, twist the ends of the tinfoil to seal and bake at 350F for about 45 minutes.

          Cut into slices and wedges for appetizers and put on a dollop of salsa..