With Easter around the corner, why not make it a little easier on yourself by hosting an afternoon dinner party? Spend the early afternoon with family and friends. Setup backyard games like cornhole, ladder golf, badminton and frisbee. Decorate your patio or deck and cater with soft drinks, beers and wine. Also, think about serving a couple of easy appetizers for guests when they first arrive, like a crudite tray, spinach dip and bread, chocolate dipped fruit or chips and salsa. Or ask your guests to bring a sharable snack. Be sure to set up enough seats for the adults–this will set the perfect scene for an afternoon Easter egg hunt in the backyard!
Along with backyard games and nosh, plan on making the easy dinner menu below. You can ask guests to contribute additional side dishes, too. Set the table the night before for a fun, laid-back holiday you will actually be able to enjoy.
Honey-baked spiral ham: Purchase at your local grocery or market and bake according to the package directions. You could even bake ahead and serve at room temperature. Serve with soft Hawaiian rolls along with mustard, aioli and gherkens so your guests can make sandwiches.
Easy mustard-potato salad: Wash, halve and bake one pound of small new potatoes. Preheat oven to 415 degrees. Coat the potato halves with olive oil, salt and pepper. Bake, turning at least once, for 30-35 minutes until potatoes are brown and crispy on the outside. To make the dressing, mix ½ cup mayo with ½ Greek-style yogurt. Add ⅓ cup dijon mustard or a mix of your favorite mustards. Finely chop two stalks of celery and half of a small red onion. Mix all together with salt and pepper and fresh dill, if you have it. Once potatoes have cooled, mix the dressing gently with the potatoes.
Frisee salad with hard boiled eggs: Add frisee leaves over your favorite mixed green salad. Chop up almond slivers and slice a red apple to put over top. If you desire, crisp up a few strips of bacon to crumble on top as well. Hard boil 4-5 eggs (or use eggs from the Easter egg hunt) and arrange them sliced on top.
Easter cupcakes: The night before Easter Sunday, bake up enough cupcakes for your guests. Frost them and then store them in an airtight container. After dinner is over, or if you have a kitchen table separate from your dining room, set up a cupcake decorating station for guests to enjoy. Add fun Easter candies, extra icing and a festive tablecloth.