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It's a Dog-Eat-Dog Holiday

hot dog medley

To be perfectly honest, I didn't "relish" the idea of a 4th of July post. To be perfectly "frank" I prefer this to be a day of rest.  A day I can just sit on my "buns" in a lounge chair and relax.  However, I recognize this is also a great day to gather friends and family and hope the kids don't behave like a bunch of "brats".  Since it is the birthday of our great nation, I decided that if I were to play the role of "top dog" this weekend I would go with a menu that is easy and fun.  Do not fear the "wurst" people---this is also an affordable way to go.  We all know the slogan:  It's as American as baseball, hotdogs, apple pie and Chevrolet. So, flip on the game, go buy the pie and offer a hot dog menu that represents the great states of our nation.   After all, I love a big wiener as much as the next girl!!

Cleveland (Polish Boy)

cleve hot dog

I was truly unaware that Cleveland was known for 2 types of hot dogs.  I assumed Tony Packo's would be in there somewhere, but apparently we are known mostly for the Polish boy that is prepared with BBQ sauce, coleslaw and a layer of french fries.  My coveted town is also revered for it's invention of stadium mustard.

Chicago-style

chicago hot dog

Love these:  Reminds me of what the Cavs did to the Bulls--devoured them.  Poppyseed roll, all beef frankfurter, yellow mustard, chopped onion, sweet relish, dill spear, tomato slices, pickled peppers, celery salt.  Ketchup is deemed unacceptable.

 

New York-style

ny hot dog

You can make these in a New York minute:  brown mustard and steamed onions.

Baltimore-style

baltimore hot dog

Love this idea---fried bologna wrapped around a weenie with mustard with a pickle spear.

Arizona (Sonoran hot dog)

arizona hot dog

 

Ridiculous---bacon wrapped beef hot dog, pinto beans, grilled onions, green peppers, chopped fresh tomato, jalapeno, mayo, shredded cheese and mustard.  This is served in a sub sandwich roll to hold together all these goodies.

West Hollywood/LA

california hot dog

 

Of course California puts a cool spin on a dang wiener.  2 hot dogs with pastrami, chili and cheese wrapped in a tortilla.

Danger Dog:  LA and Jersey

danger dog

 

Dang this looks good:  Hot dog wrapped with bacon, topped with grilled onions, chili sauce, sriracha, grilled onions and a fried egg (scrambled is acceptable).  

Kansas City

kc hot dog

So surprising to me this doesn't involve BBQ.  But, it is still royal indeed:  melted swiss cheese, sauerkraut and optional 1000 island dressing.  Basically, a reuben hot dog.  

Idaho-ho-ho

idaho hot dog

A baked potato serves as the bun with bacon, chives, carmelized onions, sour cream or anything else your little heart desires.

West Virginia (all the way dog)

wv hotdog

West Virginia is known for being wet, wild and wonderful---let's add hot dog experts to the list.  Chili, mustard and cole slaw.

Throw in some fun decorations and you are sure to be a wiener this holiday.

Thank you:  huffingtonpost.com (hot dog medley), flicker.com (polish boy), riverfronttimes.com (seattle), youtube.com (idaho), aaavegas.com (arizona), foodnetwork.com (west virginia), laeater.com (west hollywood/la), reddit.com (danger dog), checkplease.wttw.com (chicago), seriouseats.com (ny), greatestamericanhotdogs.com (baltimore), wowamazing.com (kc).

OH MY COD!!!!

Throw a Nautical Party for the Halibut!!

nautical shower 5

 

I basically have only 2 notable qualities:  I'm a wealth of useless information and I own puns.  This post will allow me to share these traits, whether you want them or not.  Before I begin on Nautical ideas for your next party, I thought I would share some interesting facts that are nautical based.  Did you know that a......

Coxswain was a term used to describe a servant boy that was in charge of a small boat that could only be used by the Captain of a ship.  This small boat was called a "cock" (I can't make this stuff up) and that this boat would often deliver seamen to fertile shores?

Or that the wooden cask of water on a ship was called a "butt"?  The sailors would "scuttle" or drill a hole in it during breaks to have a drink and often gossip---ergo the term:  scuttlebutt!

Superior officers had their flags attached to a peg at a higher positions than their sub-ordinates.  If a senior officer had to hand over his command to a junior officer the flag would be dropped---ergo the term:  taken down a peg.

A Harlot would often lure men with her good looks and sultry attire.  They would approach men by saying "Hi Jack" and then hit them over the head with a lead-filled purse.  These poor saps would then be dragged off and sold to nearby ships in need of crew members---ergo the term:  Hijack!

English landowners were prohibited to cut down or sell timber since it was reserved for building Royal Navy ships.  However, if a landowner had fallen trees and available timber due to a harsh storm or heavy wind they were permitted to sell them at will.  This was considered a financial blessing---ergo the term:  windfall!

During battle, a ship was prohibited to fire upon an enemy ship unless the National flag of that country was visible.  Ships would often fly a false flag to lure enemy ships and as they approached would quickly switch the flags to show their "true colors".  A maneuver of this sort is the basis of the phrase:  "come off with flying colors"!

I could go all day---but, I won't.  Too much of this stuff can give you a haddock.

 

Here are some pics from a recent nautical bridal shower I catered. This also works well for other events:  Ahoy it's a Buoy, Watch our Grad Set Sail, Captain and First Mate anniversary, Look who has dropped Anchor and decided to retire, Come Aboard our New Home.... life's a beach and then you marry one (okay, maybe not), but you get the idea.

 If you go with any theme----please, run with it.  It just gills me when people have themes and then half-ass it.  Are you eeling me?  Do not flounder with your theme, your grouper of people will love the heart and sole you put into all of it.  Load up your iTuna with a great playlist, offer some clever land and sea, beef and reef options on the menu and and make a bass out of yourself if need be.  It might take a little mussel, but this is not the time to clam up!  Holy Mackerel!!! This is the time you can reel in a great party--so do it!!~

nautical shower 2

Make clever signs for the bride or mom-to be.  This small perserver is great for people to sign and leave a message so their love stays afloat.  Swedish fish and goldfish are a must!!!

nautical shower 6

Nautical Ribbon on the wine glasses are adorable little touches.  Origami sailboats are easy to find on the internet and make for great accents.  I picked up this little fishing rod at a Dollar Store.

nautical shower 3

Lifesavers on twin are adorable on water bottles or as napkin rings.  Toss around some sea shells and net to create the nautical feel and of course, coconut scrubs wrapped in clam nets make for useful party favors.  I think baby's breathe is perfect for any table because it is pretty, light and airy and cheap!!  throw them in tins, mason jars or beer bottles.  

nautical shower 4

Offer up a clever beverage.  Pimm's with champagne or lemonade is amazing.  Mint in iced tea is refreshing and light.  Keep your shower menus light, but interesting and fulfilling.  Salmon caeser, Cobb (remember "EAT COBB" is an acronym for the ingredients: egg, avocado, tomatoes, chicken, olives, bacon, blue cheese).  Bacon wrapped scallops are excellent, unique bruschettas. Go with some nautical desserts:  Key lime cheesecake, Coconut cream pie, lemon squares or tropical fruit  layered with pound cake and custard.

Let your event SET SAIL!!! 

 

GOLF PAR-TEE

Bogey, Birdie, Hole-in-one

Swing on by to have have some fun

club ball

The upcoming Masters Tournament in Augusta, Georgia made me think that a golf-themed party would be fun to have this weekend or for one of the upcoming major tournaments.  Without boring you too much about golf (which seems almost impossible not to do) I will share with you the 4 upcoming Major tournaments:  The Masters in April, the U.S. Open in June (don't know why this wouldn't be the opening masters tournament, but what do I know), The Open Championship in July and the PGA Championship in August (again--I think the Masters should be held in August since it is played in Augusta, Geaorgia, but that might impact the azalea factor).  Also, theme parties for men can be tricky, this one is no bogey--it would be great for a birthday or Father's Day.  This par-tee would be especially perfect for that man in your life who has lost his grip (excuse the pun) when it comes to the amount of time he plays golf.  We all know know or have that man in our life who just simply abuses the privilege of playing golf.  I once knew a man who truly needed an intervention when it came to the greens.  I should've recognized some of the tell-tale signs that I was dealing with an above-par addict with a severe handicap for the game:

  • His ring tone was the Masters theme song
  • In order to pick up anything off the floor he leaned on his putter
  • He always had one glove on---always---almost Michael Jackson-esque
  • He would ask people ahead of us in the grocery store line if he could play through 
  • He was donning a visor and pink plaid pants in the dead of winter
  • He wore a leather bracelet with WWTD engraved on it (What Would Tiger Do?)
  • He would stop dead in his tracks at every golf infomercial

The Clubhouse

All the ideas you need before Tee-off time

You have to have food and I think you have to have food that coorelates with the theme. "Eat your greens" vegetable tray with green beans, asparagus, celery, cucumber, olives, broccoli and green goddess dip seems like a hole-in-one to me.  Wouldn't want to be off on your "shot" and caught in the "sand trap" when it comes to the food.  I think I "eagle" it with these ideas, but you decide.

 

Woods or Irons:  Kebabs on wood skewers or metal

beef kebabschicken kebabs

 

(Golf) Club Sandwiches: Almost too obvious

Pimento cheese is served at the Masters-(recipe below)

club sandwichespimento sandwiches

 

Pimento sandwiches:  4 ounces cream cheese, 1/2 cup mayo, 1 tsp paprika, 8 ounces cheddar, 8 ounces gouda, 4 ounces pimento.  spread on variety of bread slices and cut into triangles.

 

Salad wedges (get it--wedge)

Marinated mozzarella balls (shaped like golf balls)

iceburg wedgesmozz balls

 

 

 

Snacks like green licorice, popcorn,  apple and orange "slices" would caddy very well.

Buckets of chips like this one will really have your party running it's course

chips

 

 

The Infamous.....19th Hole

19th hole new

No golf-themed par-tee would be complete without the appropriate 19th hole.  Appropriate meaning any form of alcohol will do just fine.  But, if you are looking to go for the green on this event here are a few suggestions that will definitely improve your party-throwing handicap.  (I just love the puns)

Scottish Whiskeys or Bourbons

whiskeys

 

 

Scottish Beers and Lagers and Ales

beers

 

Green Martini's with a "wedge" of course

(Using a golf tee with olives would be clever with a standard martini)

Green Jello "shots",  of course

martinijelloshots

 

A few more thoughts that will truly "sink" the putt.

Bring out the Tiger (Woods) in you:

cneterpiece

 

I love games at every party (except showers).  Set up a little Hole-in-one par course in your yard or with one of those fake-turf ones you can buy on Amazon.com or Golf Galaxy.  If you have a true golfer in your life you already own one or more of these.  

Create a Fantasy Golf competition where your guest guess the winner or scores or how long it will be before you fall asleep during the match.

Golf trivia can be found on endless websites.  Every golfer thinks they are an expert--prove it.

Guess how many balls-tees-pencils?

teesballspencils

Have your guests dress in golf attire.  I'm sure you'll get a few donning the infamous green jacket.  Females can join in on the fun dressing as golf caddies or cart girls if they aren't golfers themselves.  A golf widow get-up would be funny. You can find cheap visors to provide. You can really have fun with this theme.

Little signs with clever sayings like:  "I like big putts and I cannot lie" or "Kiss my putt".

White Chinese lanterns can easily double as floating golf balls.

Create golf ball and tee centerpieces from plain to fancy.

Dyed green coconut resembles grass, so does fake grass (ha ha).

 

 

Thank you:  queen of theme parties (club/ball pic); simply scratch (beef kebabs); filmoviesonline (chicken kebabs); naturopathicgourmet (mozz balls); huffington post (wedges); us-flags (19th hole pic); southern living (pimento sandwiches); old spoon cafe (club sandwiches); balls/tees/pencils pic (southern some days); martini(cocktails.about.com); beers (visitscotland.com); whiskeys (haggishostels.com); balls in vase (decorating events. com); melanielee86. blogspot (jello shots); blovelyevents (chip shots); indulgy.com