Asian cuisine, which comes together quicker than you can say moo goo gai pan, is easy to prepare to enjoy the evening.
- Re-dish everything. Dump the disposable containers and pull out pretty serving bowls and platters. Foods that come with sauces, like satay and dumplings, beg for little serving vessels picked up for a song at Asian supermarkets.
- Go hot and cold. To cut down on at-home prep time, split ordering among hot and cold dishes. Vietnamese salads featuring green papaya or squid can go directly to the plate, leaving you free to focus on reheating.
- Garnish with color. Maybe the pad thai smells great but looks gloppy, or the chicken curry is monochromatic. Slivered cucumbers or carrots add color and crunch, whether topping off the takeout or served alongside.
Chinese chicken salad in lettuce cups, beef satay with peanut sauce and panfried dumplings are great finger foods. For a lighter dumpling, try Steamed Pacific Rim Dumplings with Minced Chicken.
Topped with caviar, tiny potatoes grab the spotlight. Pre-assemble the caviar, crème fraïche and roasted potatoes. Or if money’s no object, let guests scoop up their own black pearls.
A simple potato chip dressed in ruby red tuna tartare is the perfect accompaniment to pizzas topped with smoked salmon and dill, or goat cheese and mushrooms.
Let’s not forget the final part of a special Champagne Dinner Party is the dessert. A rich chocolate cake always steals the show.