Party food - please help! - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 7 Old 11-02-2010, 11:15 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm planning a birthday party for my toddler and I'm looking for some suggestions.

To keep it easy on myself, I'm going to have two parties - one with my side of the family at the weekend and one with the in-laws on the evening of his actual birthday.

Cake:
I thought I'd do a multi -layer cake to try and keep everyone happy.
The top layer will be a cup-cake sized cake for the birthday boy to squish and eat however he likes. I'd prefer if it wasn't full of sugar. Does anyone have a nice recipe for a relatively healthy cake?
The next layer is for two coeliacs, so it has to be gluten free, but one of them hates coconut and almond so I'm hunting for a recipe that doesn't include either of those flavours. Can anyone recommend a recipe for a wheat-free cake?
The next one is the straightforward one. This will be served to most of the guests so I'd love to hear your recommendations for a nice, people-pleaser. What's your favourite (easy to make) cake?
The final layer, I was thinking of saving for the second party but I need something that will last for a few days. I know fruit cake does but I don't know anyone who likes fruit cake! Is there any other kind of cake that won't go off in the meantime? Alternatively I could make it in advance and freeze it - has anyone frozen a cake successfully? And can you freeze it with icing/ frosting on it?

I'd really like to prove that you can have a nice party without filling everyone up with sugar, so I'm looking for some yummy and healthy party food ideas. So far, I've thought of fruit skewers and some finger sandwiches cut into shapes with cookie cutters. I'm up against a lot of resistance because all of my relatives (and I mean ALL of them) seem to think that sugar=love! I don't want to be a killjoy but it would be great to get some good recipes for the sweet essentials that substitute fruit juice for sugar, or oil for butter, etc.

I'm also interested in any cool ideas (even unhealthy ones) that you may have for children's parties. I'd love to know what you served at your parties!

And finally, a question for the wise old ones among you - any clever time-saving tips? Any pitfalls you care to signpost for the clueless?


Please feel free to jump in with any suggestions! Really just brainstorming at the moment so open to all ideas! Thanks a million!
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#2 of 7 Old 11-02-2010, 05:20 PM
 
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Well, for my little guys 1st, we had about 30 people. The only sugar i gave them was cupcakes.

I made a huge batch of hummus, served it w a big tray of veggies. I had a tray of ice cold grapes and one of watermelon (it was 90+ that day). A platter of sliced lunchmeats (ham, tky and salami) and a platter of cheese (sliced for sandwiches and cubed for the littles). A cheese tray, crackers, rolls, etc. And an ice chest of soda for the adults.

I had everything done by the night before, so that day all i had to do was assemble it on plates.

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#3 of 7 Old 11-02-2010, 05:36 PM
 
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Just off the top of my head, here's some things I've done healthy for parties.
-hummus, pineapple salsa, guac with flax and corn chips.
-wraps made with whole grain tortilla or flat bread and
-vegan cream cheese and asparagus
- spinach, olive tapenade and sundried tomatoes
- hummus and dried cranberries
roll them up and slice to display pinwheels on a tray.

Nori rolls with various veggies and brown rice would be great too.
http://andeverything-in-between.blog...ori-rolls.html

-for drinks hibiscus tea with fruits is nice and people always love.
for my baby blessing I did hibiscus tea and passion fruit juice.
http://andeverything-in-between.blog...s-flowers.html

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#4 of 7 Old 11-02-2010, 05:36 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alton View Post
The final layer, I was thinking of saving for the second party but I need something that will last for a few days. I know fruit cake does but I don't know anyone who likes fruit cake! Is there any other kind of cake that won't go off in the meantime?
I have a delicious chocolate cake recipe that keeps well for days!
It contains cooked, cooled oats, so it has more fiber than most cakes, too.
If you'd like, I could pm it to you. It's high in sugar, though.

alsoSarah

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#5 of 7 Old 11-03-2010, 02:47 PM
 
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Please make the celiacs' cake separate. Do not stack it with the other layers because the gluten from the other layers will contaminate it, either because of the cutting through it or them touching, making the celiacs sick. (I have celiac myself, and as much as I'd be thankful that you made the effort, I'd have to decline the cake and feel sorry for you for having "wasted your time, money, and effort for basically nothing" or get sick just so you don't feel bad.)

But there are a few gluten-free cake mixes out there. They tend to be a bit "dry", but I've had good luck with the Betty Crocker brand chocolate flavor and there are a few specialty brands--just add extra chocolate and I also add pureed carrots, but you could do pumpkin or something like that.

When you make it, to avoid any hint of cross-contamination, make it first, or run the utensils and pans through the dishwasher before making it. Clean the work area very well to eliminate any flour or crumbs in the area. Do not use wooden spoons. Either frost the gluten-free cake first or have frosting set aside to frost it. (Yeah, it is a ton of work.)
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#6 of 7 Old 11-03-2010, 07:37 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Ooh great ideas there, thanks! I'm getting peckish just reading them.
sweetfoxes - thanks for those great and practical tips. It never dawned on me that stacking wasn't a runner. I would HATE to think someone might risk getting sick rather than offend me, so really appreciate you sharing your wisdom.
AlsoSarah - I'd love that recipe if you don't mind sending it. Thanks!
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#7 of 7 Old 11-05-2010, 02:37 PM
 
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There was a recipe on here a while back that was ac hocolate cake containing black beans and honey or agave. It is really good.

Leila, mama to Eleanor (10/08) and Emmett (4/10)

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