Being Prepared Matters Most
Since being prepared is my number-one rule for hosting any party, I’ll share simple steps to make your next tailgate a touchdown.
- Chop veggies and make dips prior to the big day and store them in your freezer. Try my Three-ingredient Cranberry Spread – so easy!
- If you’re making chicken wings, broil ahead and freeze. On party day, pull them out, add sauce and reheat. Try my Wings with Honey Barbecue Sauce.
- Chili tastes better the day after it’s made, so make it ahead, store it in a slow cooker and heat it up a few hours before the big game. I’ve got a White Chili recipe that’s a real crowd-pleaser.
- Assemble meat and cheese platters the night before the party.
- Make homemade hot cocoa the day before, then reheat.
When we have friends to the house, I tap my top 5 time savers.
- Prepare what you can throughout the week so you can enjoy the day.
- Create family-style dishes that can stay warm in the slow cooker.
- Turn it into a potluck: have guests bring favorite dishes to share.
- Make sure the dishwasher is empty before guests arrive.
- Use Evite.com to invite and remind friends.
Plan outdoor activities for the kids to keep them entertained.
- Set up a relay race.
- Get everyone off the couch with flag football.
- A beanbag toss is game-day perfect, even for toddlers.
- Take your crafts outdoors to reduce the mess in the house. Try my favorite pumpkin pie play dough recipe.
Pumpkin Pie Play Dough
1 cup flour
1/2 cup salt
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 Tablespoon vegetable oil
1 cup water
6 drops red food coloring
15 drops yellow food coloring
Combine dry ingredients in a non-stick pan. Add oil, water, food coloring and whisk until smooth. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until it forms a ball. Turn onto counter, let cool slightly, knead until smooth. Dough will keep in a plastic bag for about a week.