When Brandon was in law school we entertained all the time. Somehow our house became the gathering spot for watching games, parties, showers, dinners and more. Since moving to Charlotte we haven’t entertained nearly as much and I think this is due to not having a big network of friends like we did in law school and just general busyness. It’s hard for me to slow down long enough to get the house ready and plan the menu.
I am going to make and effort to change this because I love having friends over for a casual dinner, especially now that the weather is getting nicer. Evenings spent dining outside and chatting on the patio are so pleasant!
Friday night we invited my sister in law and her boyfriend over for dinner and drinks to watch the UNC v. Marquette game (part of the NCAA basketball tournament). We ended up with quite an interesting assortment of beers.
I think it’s funny that so many craft brewers are using cans. If you’re a beer lover, you must try Dale’s Pale Ale (far left). It’s really grown in popularity over the last couple years.
Since we were watching a game, I wanted to keep dinner simple but fun. I decided to go with a make your own pizza bar.
Toppings included tomato sauce, pepperoni, fresh basil, chicken sausage, caramelized onions, black olives, sauteed mushrooms, artichoke hearts, sundried tomatoes, banana peppers and mozzarella cheese.
We all enjoyed customizing our own pizzas.
Rachael + Stephen’s pizzas.
Mine + Brandon’s pizzas. I went with all the veggie toppings on whole wheat crust.
Rachael contributed a super delicious salad.
Mixed greens, walnuts, avocado, pear, dried cranberries, blue cheese…dressed simply with olive oil and a squeeze of lemon.
I decided to make Carolina-themed ice cream sandwiches for dessert.
I baked M&M cookies using my giant stash of M&Ms that I won the other night! After the cookies cooled, I spread softened vanilla ice cream between them and placed them in the freezer to set. Ice cream sandwiches = awesome and they must have brought some good luck because UNC crushed Marquette! 😉
What are your favorite pizza toppings? I’m a veggie lover!