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Cocktail Pitcher Inspires 60s Dinner Party
November 12th, 2012 by

This is the cocktail set that inspired a night fit for a Mad Man.

This is the cocktail set that inspired a night fit for a Mad Man.

My parents had this cocktail pitcher and glass set from the 1960s and it’s been sitting on a shelf in the RootsLiving butler’s pantry for years gathering dust. So we decided to put it to good use by throwing a 1960s dinner party.

We knew the night would have to start off with some cocktails so deciding on that was no problem. We made a pitcher of Manhattans.

But food for a 60s dinner party could go several ways. Should we go the bean sprout hippie route complete with grass brownies for dessert? Or should we go the chic fondue route, a la Mad Men style?

We chose the latter, minus the fondue.

If you haven't had iceberg lettuce in awhile, try this.

If you haven't had iceberg lettuce in awhile, try this.

We served the Manhattans with appetizers of deviled eggs, tiny pigs in a blanket, and potato chips with onion dip.

For the main course we had beef stroganoff, served with a wedge salad.

And for dessert we had ambrosia, made with Cool Whip.

Surprisingly, some of the easiest things to make got the most raves: don’t underestimate a good onion dip or the power of Cool Whip.

Here are the recipes:

Appetizer/Cocktail Hour

Main Course

  • Beef Stroganoff (This recipe varies from the traditional by serving it over sourdough toast rather than noodles. I also used Delmonico steaks, cut up into 1-inch pieces instead of the tri-tip roast.)
  • Wedge Salad (This made me like iceberg lettuce once again.)

Open up a few cans and you've got ambrosia.

Open up a few cans and you've got ambrosia.

Dessert

  • Ambrosia Salad (I omitted the maraschino cherries and instead used some canned fruit cocktail. I also forgot to buy marshmallows but the dessert was fine without them and plenty sweet.)
  • Tom and Jerry Cocktails (This is a very old favorite, especially in winter. If you’ve never tried this you’re missing out on some great cocktail history. Make it with coffee for an after-dinner dessert.)
Find more recipes in the Food section.
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