Fact: Having a basic theme in place for your dinner party makes the planning and hosting so much easier.
One of the most popular themes (at least in my casa) is DIY Taco Night! Set up a Taco Bar at your next party and people will be taco-ing about you for weeks! In a good way...not like the way they talked about you after that Christmas party when you did that thing. You know, that thing that we're never aloud to mention again.
A taco bar is muy delicioso and it's super simple. The meal prep is done ahead of time so all you have to do just before guests arrive is fill the taco station and blend the margaritas.
1. Visit a party store if you plan to add any special Mexi touches e.g.. a sombrero or a few colourful plates or napkins.
2. Make and add a Mexi playlist of songs to your iTunes to play during dinner. Optional, but a fun touch.
1. Shop for the food—don't forget the ice and limes! (taco filling suggestions to follow)
2. Hit the liquor store—pick up a case of Corona and the ingredients to make margaritas from scratch OR you can buy the premixed jug—just pour into your blender, add ice, blend, and serve in a salt rimmed glass with a lime. If you're watching calories, there are lots of "skinny" margaritas recipes and premixed cocktails to choose from. Sorry to be a wet aztec handwoven blanket, but traditional margaritas are high in calories. FYI - I made a list of cocktails and their delicious calorie ranking HERE. You're welcome and I'm sorry.
1. DECORATE and set the table! Go all out or keep it simple. I generally add a few simple touches like a sombrero and some brightly coloured plates and napkins. You could also add a pretty cactus centrepiece or something completely awesome like these Chihuahua taco holders. I chi-wa-want these so much!
2. Slices the veggies and grate the cheese and keep in the fridge until dinner.
3. Shortly before guests arrive, make the taco meat and mexi rice and keep warm on the stove.
4. Saute any veggies you want to serve warm e.g.. onions, peppers, mushrooms—grilled and sliced portobellos make a great vegetarian filling.
5. Heat the refried beans and warm flour tortillas in tinfoil in the oven.
6. Fill the bowls in your taco bar with all the warm and cold taco fillings and corn taco shells.
7. Set out bowls of chips & salsa and guacamole, hit "play" on your Mexi music playlist, and pour yourself a margarita to enjoy while you wait for the doorbell to ring.
*A simple way to know how many bowls and serving platters to put out and to remember what goes where, put a little note on each plate or bowl with the name of the item you're filling it with. (Any time I skip this ridiculous step, I end up forgetting one of the items in the fridge. Maybe it's the margaritas or maybe I'm just old.)
1. Offer each guest a margarita or Mexican beer or a glass of non-alcoholic Watermelon Agua Fresca.
2. Do a quick Taco Bar show and tell—tell guests about the fillings, pointing out vegetarian and calorie conscious options. People can also turn their tacos into cheesy, melty gorditas! I wrote about how to do that HERE and the recipe for the Walnut Lentil Taco "Meat" is there too. Stop it. It's NOT gross. Seriously.
3. Guests assemble their own tacos and enjoy!
1. taco cat spelled backwards is taco cat
2. The filling in "Tacos de Cabeza" includes brain, tongue, eyes and lips of a cow’s head. Mmmmmm......
3. October 4th, 2016 is National Taco Day!
4. The most popular taco variety in Mexico is the Taco al Pastor.
5. People who like tacos are happier, sexier and more content than people who do not like tacos.
6. I can fit 22 cherry tomatoes in my mouth. (Wait; just me?)
And that's a wrap (corn or flour!) so taco party on muchachos!
Feeling like a little Italian? (Not a Danny DeVito joke) I wrote this post on how to host adult pizza party. Yes, I know you know how to make pizza. This post offers suggestions for how to set up your pizza assembly line and some topping ideas. Read it here.
Also check out these Potluck Dinner Party Theme Ideas and "Formal Dinner Parties for Dummies"