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Grace Parisi's Weeknight Dinner Party Menu

F&W’s Grace Parisi has a smart game plan centered around a speedy main course.

If my house is clean and I have a teeny bit of extra time, I actually enjoy throwing midweek dinner parties. The key is having a game plan. For a starter, my warm goat-cheese spread with hot-pepper jelly is nearly as simple as setting out a cheese plate. While it bakes, I put the finishing touches on a quick main course combining meat and vegetables, like vinegar-braised chicken with peas. For dessert, store-bought shortbread dipped into melted chocolate gives the illusion of effort without looking like I’m showing off. My last strategy is to keep my wine out of sight, so that if the guests bring a bottle, we’re not tempted to drink theirs plus mine. It is, after all, a weeknight, and the work day ahead looms large.

Dinner Party Menu for 8

Starters

Main Course & Side Dishes

Dessert

Wine Pairing

  • 2010 Kermit Lynch Sunflower Cuvée Côtes-du-Rhône Blanc

video Laura Werlin’s Dinner Party Cheese Tip

Published April 2012
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