What makes a girls’ night different from other nights? Maximum girlieness. How you define that depends on how your group likes to bond.
If you’re chick-flickers, watch DVDs of your favorite films or TV shows. Some classic girl-friendly fare: Thelma and Louise, Pretty Woman, How Stella Got Her Groove Back, Clueless, Valley of the Dolls, Room with a View, Sex and the City, Absolutely Fabulous.
Fashion plates can hold a clothing swap. Ask your friends to bring clothes they want to get rid of. Display the clothes so that everyone can try them on and trade. Gather up any extras and donate them to a women’s charity.
Girlie girls? Plan a beauty evening. Go beyond the usual mani/pedi fare and make your own skin treatments, like face masks and sugar scrubs, using common foods. If one of your friends is good with hair and makeup, ask if she’ll give the others makeovers. To thank her for the help, put together a gift bag or offer to pay her a little something for her services. If you really want to go all out, book a massage therapist to come to the house for mini massages.
When planning the food for your girls’ night, it’s important to know your audience. Women who are concerned about their health and fitness might get stressed by a pizza and chips feast, and those looking for a night of indulgence may not be thrilled to spend an evening gnawing on baby carrots with nonfat dip. As with most things in life, balance is key.
To keep everybody happy, pair healthful snacks like crudités with creamy, decadent dips and sauces. Artichoke dip, cheese fondue and seven-layer dip let people choose just how healthy they want to be based on how deep they dip. Tiny, gorgeous foods that pack a lot of flavor — mini quiche, tea sandwiches, cupcakes — let everybody try an array of goodies without filling up on one. Round out the meal with a big salad dressed in a light vinaigrette and loaves of warm, crusty bread.
For dessert, you’ll need some chocolate. And then more chocolate. And, of course, a few items for those rare creatures who don’t like chocolate. As with your savory dishes, you’ll want to serve a variety of desserts, some light (sorbet, angelfood cake, fruit) and some real showstoppers, like cheesecake, ice cream sundaes and bananas Foster.
Featured Girls’ Night Party Recipes from Epicurious.com
Edamame Dip with Crudités
Stilton Cheese Puffs
Toffee Crunch Caramel Cheesecake
• 1 oz. vodka
• 1/2 oz. triple sec
• 1/2 oz. lime juice Shake well and serve in chilled glass.
Non-Alcoholic – Make a virgin Cosmo with cranberry, orange and lime juices, and garnish with a curl of orange peel.
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