Graduation Party Family Style Recipes

Continuing on our earlier post, Graduation Party Family Style, we bring you the recipes. It is amazing how you find favorites that are always there and reinvent them for a new theme. We do that often in our cooking. Things do always seem to evolve and are rarely exactly the same twice. In addition, we are never afraid to try something new for a party. If it doesn’t come out, we improvise…that is half of the fun! As long as you can find a way to enjoy the party, you have succeeded. Let us know how you like these!

The “No Fork” Menu


Challah Bread

Homemade Rolls – just like the buns we made before only smaller!


Homemade BBQ Sauce: This one deserves its own post, so look out for this to come!

Lemon Aioli: Sans basil; so easy!

Cranberry Chipotle Sauce:

Start with cranberry sauce (ours was saved from Thanksgiving and canned), take one chipotle pepper and 1 tablespoon of the canning sauce and blend all ingredients together. Use as a spread for your sandwich (or on everything, it is so good!) If you wanted to get really creative, you could make it into butter or mayo to make a creamy spread. YUM.

Parmesan Croutons:

Preheat the oven to 375°. Cut stale bread into cubes as desired. Place in a bowl and toss with a sprinkle of olive oil, salt, crushed red peppers, and crushed fresh garlic cloves. Melt about a tablespoon of butter in a skillet over medium high heat add the bread to lightly toast the croutons. Stir to brown on all sides. Toss with shredded parmesan cheese. Place the skillet in the oven for about 10-20 minutes until mostly dried out. Allow to cool and store in an airtight container.

Goat Cheese and Pear Appetizer:

Kelly found this recipe for Goat Cheese and Pear appetizer on Pinterest. Just slice the pears (we dipped in some lemon water to reduce browning), then spread goat cheese, and sprinkle with chopped pistachios and dried cranberries. If I was going to do this again, I would make them right before. I don’t think it saved very well, so perhaps best for a smaller group. Also, the original recipe left a bit of space for picking up, which is a great idea. That said, this was a keeper!

Relishes in Jars

Mary found this idea for the relishes on Pinterest, again! Just find some different jars or vases and fill with vegetables. It creates a great color blocked look.

Caesar Salad Spears with Green Goddess Dressing.

The idea for this salad dish was that guests could pick up the individual spears which were already dressed with Green Goddess and Croutons.

For the Green Goddess, we used about 1 cup of our lemon aioli (leave out the basil), ½ bunch of scallions, ½ cup of chopped Italian parsley, anchovy paste to taste (about 1 tsp), 2 cloves garlic, salt and pepper to taste. Place all ingredients in the blender and blend until smooth.

For the salad, place spears on a platter and dress in layers. Top with croutons and enjoy!


Elvis Style Cole Slaw

Remember this one? All we did was leave out the basil in the aioli and voila it becomes Elvis Style!

Cupcake Mania

We made homemade Sprinkles Chocolate Frosting. I will not even try to take credit for this frosting. It is AWESOME. Every single time it is great. It is rich and light at the same time. If you have been looking for a great frosting, here it is! We just used a chocolate cake recipe that we had on hand, but we are still in search of the perfect cupcake recipe…let us know if you have one!!

We thought this was a hugely successful party, but wish we had hired some help to better serve the 65 people who came. We would have had a better chance to visit with people. Parties like this are always easier in the summer because you can spread out more and make more targeted areas for food, drinks, etc. Overall, we thought this was one of our best parties. We had a great crowd and a great team effort to pull it off! One of the biggest successes of any party has to do with the people you invite and we had a great crowd! Thanks to everyone who shared this day with us.

& Kelly





  1. YEA!!! Can’t wait to try the crutons, green goddess and chipoltle cranberry!
    Great work, Kelly….and with the week that you had!!!!

  2. […] in wontons for something different. If you are looking to lighten things up a bit make a colorful Veggie Display or some Baked Chicken Fingers with tons of flavor sure to be a hit. Or bring stadium food home with […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s