Hosting a dinner party? Look no further than these exquisite recipes from The Barefoot Contessa herself, Ina Garten, for menu inspiration … and prepare to wow your guests!
Lamb Sausage in Puff Pastry
These party favourites are easier than they look, and are sure to be gobbled up by dinner party guests. Making use of store-bought puff pastry, and lamb sausage is the key to these tasty appetizers.
Parmesan Chive Smashed Potatoes
If you’re serving a rich meat dish, skip the delicate, fluffy mashed potatoes and smash your spuds instead. First, boil your potatoes – skin and all – and then press them with a large masher or metal measuring cup before roasting them. This recipe allows you to use smaller potatoes, and the texture pairs beautifully with steaks or roasts.
Smoked Salmon Spread
Skip the store-bought dips and opt for this flavour-packed spread instead. Get all the flavours of lox in one bite with this cream cheese, dill and smoked salmon starter.
Limoncello Vodka Collins
Welcome your guests with a fresh citrusy cocktail to get the party going. Make a batch of the vodka cocktails ahead of guests arriving so you can have time to mix and mingle without running to the kitchen to prepare a fresh drink at every arrival.
Greek Mezze Platter
This easy appetizer platter has a little of everything — toasted pita chips, salty marinated feta cheese, roasted red peppers, stuffed grape leaves and smooth, garlicky hummus.
French Charcuterie Platter
A classic charcutire board is a great way to prepare for a superb meal. Assemble an assortment of French deli favourites – think hams and sausages – along with pates, pickles, mustard, and sourdough bread.
Herb Coeur A La Creme
Coeur a la creme is a versatile molded cheese dish that can be given a sweet or savoury flourish. This recipe calls for a vibrant blend of herbs – including scallions, dill and chives – making it the perfect pre-dinner snack.
Roasted Shrimp Cocktail Louis
Impress your guests with a homemade roasted shrimp ring and tangy cocktail sauce. It will be gone in a flash, so feel free to steal a few before serving to your party.
Easy Coquilles Saint Jacques
Ina simplifies a French bistro favourite in this creamy, cheesy seafood appetizer. Prepare the bay scallops, sauce, breadcrumbs and cheese in gratin dishes, and bake them until golden and bubbly.
Make-Ahead Goat Cheese Mashed Potatoes
Give your mashed potatoes a creamy, decadent twist by adding garlic, herb goat cheese and sour cream. Cook and mash your potatoes the day before or morning of your soiree, incorporating all of your ingredients, and then pop the dish in the fridge. Simply bake them before serving until the top is an enticing golden brown.
Chicken Thighs with Creamy Mustard Sauce
This effortless dish is made in one skillet on the stovetop, and is ready in under an hour. Ina cooks chicken thighs to a golden, juicy finish and then creates the velvety sauce with creme fraiche, white wine and two types of high-quality mustard.
Cider-Roasted Pork Tenderloins
Choosing pork tenderloins for a dinner party main allows you to get a head start on your meal prep. Create the perfect marinade with hard cider, maple syrup and a mix of spices, and allow the meat to sit overnight to ensure that all of the flavours are absorbed. Pop them in the oven when your guests arrive, and you’ll have perfectly roasted pork in under 30 minutes.
Grilled New York Strip Steaks
Grilled New York strip steaks are an uncomplicated, yet mouthwatering, main dish for your next dinner party. Ina creates her own fragrant spice rub that features ground coffee and chipotle chile powder to give it a unique flavour profile.
English Rib Roast
Standing rib roasts are easy to prepare and make an impressive centrepiece for a dinner party. Ina uses a simple combination of Dijon mustard, salt and pepper to season the beef before cooking.
Rigatoni with Sausage & Fennel
While lasagna might come to mind when thinking of a dinner party pasta dish, rigatoni is a delightful alternative. This one-pot meal tosses large pasta tubes with sweet Italian sausage, chopped fennel, and a creamy tomato-white wine sauce.
Shaved Brussels Sprouts With Pancetta
Although Brussels sprouts are absolutely scrumptious when roasted, shaving and then sauteeing the mini cabbages really changes up the flavour experience. Ina starts her recipe with pancetta and olive oil and finishes it with syrupy balsamic vinegar, giving it a Mediterranean profile.
Tricolore Salad with Oranges
This colourful salad ticks all the boxes, with its blend of arugula, radicchio and endive, briny olives, tangy pickled onion, and sweet orange. It’s all brought together with a simple vinaigrette made with lemon juice, olive oil and Dijon.
Green Salad with the Ultimate French Vinaigrette
Take your favourite salad greens and toss them in a simply scrumptious, very French Champagne-Dijon vinaigrette. Serve it as an appetizer for pasta, or as a side with fish or chicken.
Roasting cauliflower brings out the vegetable dish‘s nutty sweetness, and is complemented by grated Parmesan and Gruyere. Whether served as a side or an appetizer, you’ll barely get it on the table before it disappears.
Limoncello Ricotta Cheesecake
End your feast on a bright note with this simple cheesecake recipe from Ina Garten. A mix of cream cheese and ricotta infused with southern Italian lemon liqueur is nestled on a classic graham cracker crust for a sweet burst of sunshine any time of the year.