Kitchen Chat Dear Jane

Kitchen Chat: Dear Jane

One of my special interests is to get young girls excited about cooking, so when I plan my daughter's birthday parties, I always keep that in mind. For my daughter Amy's 18th Birthday, I decided on the theme "A Day at the Spa". I wanted to serve a light & refreshing menu and when I read the April/May issue, I knew just what I'd make.

The fruit trifles were perfect! I set out bowls of various fruits to choose from, along with pieces of angel food cake. For the sauces, I made the Strawberry Mousse Parfaits on page 53, but served the strawberry mousse and strawberry sauce separately in bowls, along with a bowl of vanilla pudding. The girls saw that something as simple as layering fruit and cake in pretty glassware with pudding and sauce, could be fun and exciting. For variety, I made the Lemon Curd Tartlets and the Chocolate Ganache Tarts. Amy made the Heavenly Surprise Cupcakes.

The pizza feature inspired my choice for dinner. The girls got to create their own individual pizza. I used flat bread as a crust, with alfredo or marinara sauce. They had several toppings to choose from: cheeses, veggies, meats, — many ingredients from the recipes in the feature.

Amy and her friends will be going to college in the fall, and this is something they could easily prepare that would be healthy and easy—leftovers could be used the next day to top a baked potato.

Along with a pretty "seaside" table setting and spa "treatments" (manicures, pedicures, paraffin hand treatments, make-up makeovers) the girls really had a great time. And so did I!

I hope you'll share some of your party ideas; send them to DearJane@tasteofhome.com

Until next time!!

Jane