Party Food

How to Throw a Rustic Bridal Shower at Home — The Rustic Bridal Shower

Type the words "rustic bridal shower" into Pinterest and the results are, well, overwhelming. How on earth do people manage to pull these things off? All that Kraft paper, twine, and wood! Turns out, though, a rustic bridal shower (or any other type of rustic-looking party) is actually pretty simple to throw.

To prove it to you, we planned a cute bridal shower luncheon with tons of accessible ideas. This buffet party was budget-friendly and also totally low-stress, thanks to easy decorations and a menu of mostly make-ahead snacks.

Here's how it all came together.

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How To Grill Juicy, Flavorful Shrimp — Cooking Lessons from The Kitchn

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

Here's why you need to learn how to grill shrimp: This affordable crustacean is the fastest-cooking protein you can throw on the grill, it feels fancy but is fast enough for a weeknight, and it can do double duty as either an appetizer that cooks while the main grilled event rests or as the main event itself. Plus, shrimp takes readily to a host of flavors, including the smoky ones that we know and love from the grill.

It does require some consideration before it goes on the grill. Namely, how does one keep the shrimp from falling into the grill or overcooking and becoming tough and dry over the hot heat? The answer is skewers and yogurt, my friends. Curious? Let's light up the grill and literally put shrimp on the barbie (had to, sorry).

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A Make-Ahead Menu for a Rustic Bridal Shower Lunch — Tips from The Kitchn

A bridal shower is mostly about showering the bride-to-be with gifts and love and playing silly games — but that doesn't mean the food should be an afterthought. In fact, I don't think there is a better way to show your affection and support for the bride than to also shower her, and her closest family and friends in attendance, with good food and drink.

This menu will help you do just that, and do it with ease. Planning a shower can be a lot of work, but if you follow this make-ahead menu, it can actually be quite simple. We've even provided a timeline so you can line up everything you need to do in order to throw a shower your favorite bride is sure to love.

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Recipe: Lemon Meringue Layer Cake — Video from Kitchn

Sometimes you need someone else to come up with a bright idea — especially the ones that are so obvious in hindsight — so you can simply partake in its glory. That's how we feel about this confection that brings the flavors and gooey textures of lemon meringue pie to a towering layer cake. We're just happy someone dreamt it up so we can make it at home! To demystify some of the magic, start by watching this video. It will show you how to turn three glorious layers of buttery lemon cake, homemade lemon curd, and meringue frosting into this citrus-lover's dream cake.

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5 Fresh Salads for Your Next Party, Potluck, or Backyard BBQ — Quick and Easy Weeknight Dinners

I firmly believe that you can never have too many salads and sides at summer potlucks — extra emphasis on the salads. They're the beacon of freshness that celebrate the ripe summer produce at our fingertips and help balance out all the taco dip, burgers, ribs, and ice cream.

Of course, there are the classic salads you expect to see in the summer potluck lineup, but this year lead the charge with fresh new flavors and combinations that will impress the whole crowd.

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Recipe: Slow Cooker Hawaiian Brisket Sandwiches — Quick and Easy Weeknight Dinners

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

Imagine pillowy-soft Hawaiian rolls piled high with slices of tender beef brisket and sweet pineapple, all topped with a crunchy cabbage slaw. Are you hungry yet? These tasty little sandwiches can be yours for the eating as a weeknight dinner or for your next party or tailgate. All it takes is a piece of brisket, some pantry staples for a homemade pineapple teriyaki sauce, and a long stint in a slow cooker. Eat these outside on the patio because these sandwiches get messy in the best possible way.

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