Dec 12, 2009

Host A Christmas Party, Semi-Homemade Style

This time of year, who has time to slave away in the kitchen?

I don't.

I used to think that cooking from boxes and using store-bought foods was cheating.

Well, I still feel a little guilty about it if I'm honest with myself.

But then I tell myself that it's more about the people than the food...right? And it saves so much time. And then there's the fact that when it's coming from my kitchen, at least I know that it will turn out (I like to experiment a little too much, so you never know).

In my opinion, the word Semi-Homemade sounds much better than store-bought, doesn't it? Thanks to Sandra Lee.

So in honor of saving time, here's a few semi-homemade ideas from a party we hosted last weekend.

Cupcakes...gotta love funfetti frosting! Semi-homemade idea tip: put the (store-bought) frosting in a ziplock bag, cut off the corner, and pipe the frosting onto the cupcakes. Top with fun sprinkles!

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My new favorite dessert to make - brownies frosted with nutella, and topped with hazelnuts. I think I got the idea from Giada (oh, how I miss you). Sounds fancy, but it's super easy. I baked these in a muffin tin, but a brownie pan works just as well!

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Meatballs with marinara. I love my crockpot!

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Hawaiian bread with spinach dip, too easy. Thanks to Traci from the great idea.

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And a party favorite around here, Amanda's cowboy salsa! I can't get enough of this stuff! Speaking of Amanda, she's just about ready to have baby number four, a boy after three girls (but we love little girls around here). You can pray for her if you think of it; she's been having a hard time sleeping at night. I can't imagine how you could ever sleep with three kids and one on the way, not to mention a husband on tour. And I thought it was hard to sleep with one kid.

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Any other easy and fun ideas? I would love to hear them!

And on a random note, I am really loving this stuff. In fact, I am drinking it right now. Amanda, you might be able to use some coffee to stay awake. They say one cup is okay. :)

Now for those Christmas parties, if deciding what to wear was as easy as deciding what to cook...


Kiki said...

The cupcakes are so pretty! Everything looks yummy!

Semi homemade does sound better.

So, what did you wear?! And maybe more importantly, what did Callie wear?

Holmfamily said...

i love sandra lee...such great ideas!

i am definitely going to make those brownies with the nutella...aspen loved them!

keep the ideas coming!

Amanda said...

Thank you so much for mentioning me on your blog! Any and all prayers are very much appreciated right now! I know this is just a "season" of life, and I'll make it through. But still, I definitely appreciate the prayers!

I also LOVE the peppermint mocha coffee creamer but I can never track it down in the store (Target or Cub) because they're always sold out - where are you finding it???!

chevysmith said...

yummm...can't wait to try the brownies with nutella!

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