Make one, make them all. The key to easy-breezy summer entertaining is a stockpile of prep-ahead, serve-yourself recipes that can feed a crowd or just a few. Here, a buffet full of delicious ideas.
Get a Head Start
Choose foods that can be prepared in advance and served at room temperature. Some of these dishes -- such as the pickled corn -- actually improve with time.
Think Big Flavor, Small Price Tag
When cooking for a crowd, opt for affordable proteins -- such as London broil and mussels -- and infuse them with bold flavors.
Local produce is not only tasty but more eco-friendly than flown-in fruit and vegetables. Take advantage of all those blueberries, stone fruits, and corn.
Make sure vegetarians, the gluten-free, and the plain old picky have something to munch on.
Consider Both Grazers and Diners
Some guests will want to fill a plate and sit at the table; others will graze and nibble. Items such as our crudites and potato wedges can work as either sides or finger foods.
Spicy Three-Cheese Dip
Grilled Cubanelles, Tomatoes, and Scallions
Crudites with Pistachio-Pecorino Pesto
Flourless Chocolate-Macadamia Cookies
Apricot-Raspberry Frangipane Tart
Coconut Cake with Berries and Cream