06/25/2013

Summer is in full swing, and the Fourth of July is just around the corner. Looking to celebrate this year but not with the same old burgers and hot dogs? Have a get together and ask guests to bring their favorite appetizers, side dishes, or desserts. This takes away some of the pressure off your list of preparations and also let’s other show off their kitchen talent! Not in the mood for a bigger meal- just do appetizers and again ask others to bring their favorites; you could make it similar to a Food Network Challenge and have a taste off to see who prepared the best dish!

Incorporate the red, white, and blue with a brie appetizer. Get a wheel of brie cheese; removing the rind is optional. Place the wheel in the center of rolled out crescent rolls (leave the rolls together instead of pulling them apart), add strawberry or raspberry jam/preserves, and top it off some blueberries or blackberries- another option is to add walnuts or almonds on top before you fold the leftover crescent roll on top of the cheese, jam, and fruit. Bake until the pastry is golden brown and the cheese is bubbly; serve with apple slices, baguette, pretzel chips, etc. Instead of making a cake or brownies, try a healthy alternative and create an American flag using fruit kabobs. Having kids over? Make a slip and slide or have a water balloon toss (another great chance to use red, white, and blue) to keep the kids cool. Finally, if you’re having a bonfire, add sage to the wood to repel mosquitoes and other pesky bugs while avoiding the smelly, sticky, traditional bug spray. Remember to stay hydrated and have fun; leave the office and stress alone and just enjoy family, friends, and fireworks!

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