Our second annual apple dinner party was last Sunday and it was delightful. I’m so grateful for a group of people who join us – time and again – around the table for a meal, bottomless drinks and tons of laughter. Our memories are marked by signature cocktails and recipes. Overtime we mix them up – was that on new year’s eve or the first table party? – and quite frankly it makes me want to do it again and again. Because it’s all about people doing life together, clinking glasses and swapping recipes.
For the record, this year’s fete included:
Bourbon Apple Cider
Champagne + Cider
*Note: I am not changing these next year because they’re simply perfect.
Caramelized onion, apple, gruyere tarts
Bacon wrapped dates, stuffed with cream cheese
BBQ Turkey Drumsticks
Spinach/Arugula Salad with berries, feta and pecans (white balsamic for the win!)
Barley, butternut squash, spinach and pancetta
Macaroni and cheese
Roasted acorn squash
Apple butter creme brûlée
Apple crisp with vanilla ice cream
This is a list of classics (mac and cheese, dates) combined with new recipes (homemade bbq sauce, tart appetizers) and sweet dreams (creme brûlée and crisp). So many wins!
Homemade apple butter with cinnamon scones
I love a good takeaway, and if I’m going to keep my friends at the table for three hours on a school night and stuff them to the gills, I’m going to send them home with a little breakfast for the next day. This is only the second time I’ve made apple butter (the first time being last year’s apple dinner), and it came out a little different then the original batch. I know what I did differently, and while I can’t imagine I’ll make it again before next fall, I have a new game plan.
DECORPlaid! This is certainly going to inspire future fall decor and next year’s apple dinner party. I much prefer plaid to the traditional fall aesthetics, to say it politely, and was pleased to run into these napkins and pennant flags at Target.
I also took matters into my own hands this year and painted my own apple and branches motif onto a table runner using a roll of chalkboard paper. Set with ivory votives in glass holders wrapped with a dainty leaf ribbon. Easy, peasy.
I’m hardly ever pleased with an entire spread, and the outcome of this menu was no exception. I could have used a bigger oven or cut back on the dishes that needed to be roasted or served warm. But at the end of the night, what matters is the group of friends we had around this table, one year after it first landed in our home, and the different memories of meals shared in the past 12 months (and that the turkey was cooked thoroughly).
TALK BACK: Tell me what you’ve served or plan to serve at your fall dinner parties this year! Also, if you want to know any of the recipes mentioned above, let me know in the comments section and I will consider doing separate posts on them.