Social Question

nikipedia's avatar

Can you help me plan this event?

Asked by nikipedia (27475points) January 12th, 2011

Every couple months, my department holds a social event. Everyone is invited to gather over beer, wine, and some kind of food. Next month is my lab’s turn to host, and I’d really like to come up with some kind of theme, if possible!

The obvious theme for us Southern Californians (Mexican) has been done multiple times, so I’d like to come up with something new.

Also, we have a very limited budget ($150 for alcohol and $500 overall), so if you have any brilliant cost-saving measures, I’d love to hear them.

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10 Answers

JLeslie's avatar

Greek or Italian would be my picks.

JLeslie's avatar

Or, Mediteranian as a larger theme. Pita bread, hummus, eggplant, salads, orzo, meat dish, chicken dish, Baklava, etc.

Kardamom's avatar

We used to have these hilarious pot luck parties at work where the theme was a color.

It happened quite by accident because at one point one of the rooms where we worked got painted this weird color of yellow and everyone kept referring to it as cheesy yellow or squash yellow, or fritos yellow or lemon pie yellow etc. So we decided to create a Yellow Food Day. It was a huge hit and we kept doing all of the colors after that. You’d be surprised at the creativity of people who have to come up with a food that fits into the color parameter.

For green food day we had all sorts of salad, broccoli dishes, pesto pasta, green beans, mint ice cream, pistachio desserts, raw green apple Waldorf salad, green m&m cookies, cole slaw, artichoke dip, pizza with a basil pesto sauce and Indian style pesto made of cilantro and mint.

For red food day we had spaghetti with marinara sauce, salsa and red tortilla chips, red beans and rice, chili (we were quite liberal with the colors as long as it was sort of in the range) red pepper hummus, red apple Waldorf salad, a red jello mold, red velvet cake, cranberry sauce, red cabbage slaw, borscht, tomato soup, cherry pie etc.

For white food day we had herbed basmati rice, mashed potatoes, white bean dip, quesadillas with white cheese, a white cheese platter, marinated white mushrooms, potato salad, hard boiled eggs (again pretty liberal with the colors) potato cheese soup, tofu salad, a cold soba noodle salad, marinated turnips Japanese style, sugar cookies, angel food cake, vanilla pudding, home made vanilla ice cream (one girl actually brought her ice cream maker) pierogies and potato chips.

If you do this, don’t give anyone any ideas ahead of time. It’s much more fun to see what kinds of things people come up with. All of our parties were a hoot!

Don’t forget to set the table with appropriately colored table cloths! And encourage everyone to wear that color on the day of the party.

snowberry's avatar

You could have a build-your-own-salad party. Just provide ingredients for a giant salad bar, and you are set. You could also offer chilli or soup on the side. For an event like this, shop at Costco, and get those huge boxes of lettuce, spinach, potato salad, grated cheese, etc

One of my favorite salads is to take a bottle of pesto, and combine it in equal amounts with balsamic vinegar (when in doubt, add more vinegar). I have found it tastes best if you put lots and lots of goodies in the salad, and chop everything up so it’s all about the same size (no more than a half inch). Mix up the chunky stuff with the dressing first, such as toasted slivered almonds and grape tomatoes. Mix in the lettuce last. It’s a lot of work, but boy howdy, it’s awesome. .

blueiiznh's avatar

I have a group of friends that get together once a month or so and do themes.
Here are some of the past ones that were great:
Tapas, Indian (dot not feather), Cajun, Fondue, Middle Eastern, Desserts, all appetizers.

The mexican, italian, french, etc are kind of common as you say. If I think of more, I will add.
For a switch, have a basic food and change the focus to the beverages. Unique Beers and Wine from all over the world.

BarnacleBill's avatar

Movie “Mermaids” theme complete with under the sea decorations, 1960’s appetizers a la Mrs. Flax, drinks with umbrellas.

jazmina88's avatar

Hawaii!!! pork, pineapple, grass skirts
fruity drinks with umbrellas

jazmina88's avatar

Or Valentines
Romantic food…..
heart shaped cake
strawberries and whip cream or chocolate

marinelife's avatar

You could do Asian and have sushi and gyozas and eggrolls, etc.

blueiiznh's avatar

Oddly, I am also inplanning stages for a gathering in February.
Check out these observances and something float your boat.

February Holidays

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