Now, for the food!
An Oscar party is no time for a sit down dinner, so make it a “grazing party”. Everything should be finger food, a variety of appetizers rolling out over the course of the evening. Look for sales to save money, and work those killer deals into some sort of finger food appetizer. Make hot appetizers days ahead and freeze, or buy ready-made frozen appetizers at supermarkets on sale, or warehouse club stores. Heat them up throughout the party as the “grazers” need them. Prepare several plate sized cold platter arrangements in the morning and cover in the fridge, ready to take out one at a time as needed. Choose whatever is on the best sales: salami, cheese, raw veggies for dip. Think colors: red, yellow, green. Check drugstores too for great sales on mixed nuts, snacks, crackers, olives, gourmet popcorn, cookies, and candies, and more, and you’ll be catering like a pro without blowing your budget.
Fancy finger sandwiches can be made ahead of time, covered and in the fridge. Garnish the platters with radish flowers and parsley for color.
If you find a sale on imitation crab meat and cherry tomatoes, make my crab stuffed tomatoes. Click here for the recipe. You can make the crab salad the day before, and finish them a few hours before the party, covered and in the fridge. If you use cherry tomatoes, they’re the perfect one-bite finger food! People will eat them like popcorn!
Check out the how-to video:
Make an exotic pineapple floral arrangement. Cut the top and bottom off of the pineapple. Core the pineapple, and place a tumbler glass of water inside. Secure the top back onto the cored pineapple with toothpicks. Make five notches between the pineapple’s top and body to stick the flowers through and into the tumbler glass of water inside. Arrange fruit around the base of the pineapple on a gold charger, as a platter.
Check out this how-to video:
A dazzling but inexpensive centerpiece can be made with fruit on wooden skewers, stuck into a whole pineapple. Decorate the ends of the skewers with laminated photos of the nominated stars, or simply accent with gold curling ribbon for that Oscar flare. Here’s how I made an arrangement for the Super Bowl that you can copy for an Oscar theme:
For a designer look, transform your buffet table with stacks of books to create varying levels of interest. Build the tallest stack in the middle with the widest books for your centerpiece, cascading down to lower levels. Make sure each “platform” is the right size to hold your serving platters. Cover with a tablecloth and adorn with sparkly ornaments, or even strings of white lights. In this video, I show how to set up a classy buffet table and how I make serving easy.
Choose champagne punch as a money saving alternative to pricey champagne! For each bottle of champagne, add a shot of Tia Maria with a 1/2 cup of juice. Make ice rings with fruit that’s on sale, grapes, orange, lemon and lime slices, strawberries, and freeze in layers. Garnish champagne glasses with strawberries. For Oscar bling, drape rhinestone costume jewelry around the punch bowl!
Swag bags should be fun, and don’t have to cost a fortune. Find plain gold or black gift bags, and decorate with glitter or shiny ribbons. Look for clearance sales on Valentine heart chocolate boxes, which could be 70-90 percent off. Take out the chocolates to fill small truffle bags from a craft store (25 bags for about $2). Tie each bag with shiny gold ribbon. Visit a dollar store to add fun little odds and ends to the swag bag: flash lights mints, pens, hand soaps, and more.
Enjoy! And may the “Best Picture” win!
Teri Gault is the CEO and Founder of the GroceryGame.com. She was intent on saving her family money. Her common sense homestyle approach to good living included collecting coupons and matching them to grocery store sales. Eventually, this hobby became a passion. Teri would share her money saving ideas with family and friends who were more than impressed by her attention to detail and her ability to predict sales trends. After some time, it became obvious that Teri’s “hobby” was more than just a good idea to share with friends. The business of The Grocery Game was underway. At first, The Grocery Game made “TERI’S LISTs” available mainly to members in Southern California. Later, by offering franchises to persons throughout the United States, the company was able to expand at an unprecedented pace. Currently, The Grocery Game offers “TERI’S LIST” in all 50 states, and 7 foreign countries. Tens of thousands of members log on each week and save hundreds of dollars a month on their groceries.