A Summer Dinner Party

August 15, 2011

I’m excited to announce a new project for the blog. I’m going to host themed dinner parties for each of the four seasons throughout the course of the year, and share the menus, styling tips and of course photos with you. To kick-off the project, I invited 8 friends over for an al fresco summer dinner. I spent the morning grazing the farmer’s market and Zabar’s, my go-to specialty food store, for the ingredients, and my afternoon prepping the dishes and shooting.

The Menu…

• Drinks: Raspberry mint lemonade made by blending raspberries, peeled lemons, ice, sugar and mint until the consistency of a slushy and garnishing with dried hibiscus flowers

• Appetizers: Rosemary bread with sundried tomato tofu spread and prosciutto wrapped asparagus and breadsticks

• First Course: Martha’s tomato, cantaloupe and basil salad

• Second Course: Lemon grilled chicken, chopped onions, goat cheese and lettuce placed in tortillas molded and then baked into baskets with pesto pasta and a side of grilled vegetables

• Dessert: Chocolate mint brownies with whipped cream

Styling Tips…

•Scanning a page of my grandfather’s notebook from the 70’s and travel photos from my parent’s travels to Greece in the 80’s as the background for personalized menus

• Folding cloth napkins in an envelope style with the menu inside and tying it all together with twine-resembling yarn

• Using typewriter letter stamps and gold ink on ivory cardstock for name cards and clothespin it to the table runner

• Floral arrangement created by my friend, Jessica, who just completed the New York Botanical Garden Floral Design Intensive

• Vintage lanterns for centerpieces

• Mason jars with twine resembling yarn tied around them to hold the utensils and candles for lighting

Table setting & tomatoes

Menu & ingredients

Fresh pasta & Jessica's flower arrangement

Raspberry mint lemonade

Tomatoes & name cards

Asparagus & pesto

Prosciutto wrapped asparagus and breadsticks

Table setting and a cantaloupe, tomato and basil salad

Grilled chicken baskets, pesto pasta and prosciutto appetizers

Place setting and grilled chicken baskets


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3 Responses to “A Summer Dinner Party”

  1. Jessica Says:

    It was yummy! Thanks for having us.

  2. tanya Says:

    wow! i want to come to new york and taste samples of your dinners! amazing michelle! xoxo

  3. darqlabs Says:

    what a wonderful way to capture this summer meal. everything looks so fresh and crisp. and i absolutely love prosciutto wrapped asparagus.
    wonderful photos.


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