Throw the Unexpected: An International Dinner Party!

Nearly every party you attend this summer will be out under the sun. Who can resist a pool party or down-home BBQ? How can you throw a party that sets you apart? Host your friends in the evening, enjoying cool air under the stars. And what if the theme dare not involve a grill or bottle of rose? Throw an International dinner party, and wow your friends with the unexpected!

How to do it:

Audience Participation

Have your guests show up in clothes from their native country, or from their newly-discovered DNA results! My friend Kim wanted to poke fun at her Russian lineage, so she came with a basket of vodka and potatoes, and scowled for photos.

Keep it Simple

No need to embark on elaborate recipes, though, should you feel so inclined, Ladles & Linens has an exotic list of spices. You can keep it simple. If you have a good food processor (and you should), you can whip up a batch of hummus for a fraction of the price of the tiny tubs at the store - and no cooking! Just throw the following in the food processor: one can of drained chick peas (save some water to soften the mix), two cloves of garlic, juice from a half lemon, a teaspoon of tahina sauce and salt and pepper to taste. Blend and taste until it's just right. Garnish with a shallow puddle of extra virgin olive oil on top, and dust with paprika.

To reduce stress, prep as much as you can ahead of time, with food-saving miracle products, like this guacamole keeper and Greensaver produce keeper. Expert tip: No one wants to be greeted by a stressed-out host, so drink during the inevitable last-minute hustle. These stemless martini glasses are a beauty, and less likely to be knocked over. If you've had two full drinks before the first guests arrive, it's gong to be a good night.

It's a Small World

Try to include foods from your guests' homelands. Label the dishes on printed flags for the intended country. Have a photo booth with a sign above reading, "It's a Small World" - a feel-good reminder to focus on our similarities, rather than our differences. 

Let the Games Begin

You've probably noticed by now, but I'm a fan of games. Host a trivia contest about world geography and culture. The winner gets to take home a basket of International food! Your local Ladles & Linens store will be chock full of creative gift ideas! We stuffed our prize basket with Italian pasta, Greek dolmas, English shortbread, Mexican salsa and more!

For the full story on our International dinner party, click here.

And when you host your own soiree, be sure to share the photos with us - we can't wait!