caribbean dinner party

DECORATIONS AND APPAREL

Decorating for a Caribbean-themed party is actually very simple. Fill your home with bowls of coconuts and some pineapples. You can also buy netting to hang from your ceiling, and then you can place some fresh flower petals in the nets. Use construction paper to cut out palm trees with the green and brown paper and suns with the orange and yellow paper. Scatter seashells throughout the house. You can also buy blow up birds, such as flamingos and parrots, paper fish sculptures, or even tropical pitas for your bash.

Try to adorn your home or patio in beach colors, like tan and light blue. Decorate your tables with grass skirts. As far as the dress code is concerned, go the Caribbean all the way! Get some grass skirts, coconut bras, beach hats, and shirts with bright prints. As the host, you should have the outfit that stands out the most, so don’t hold back! Provide all of your guests with leis upon arrival too. Remember, if you want your guests to come in costume, you have to make that very clear with your invitations. You could also have a station set up at your party for body painting draw samples of body art ideas, such as exotic flowers.

MUSIC AND ACTIVITIES

The music that you play should celebrate the sounds of the Caribbean. Reggae, steel drum beats, and calypso music are great options, but you can also play a few tracks of natural ocean sounds. As far as activities go, stick mostly to dancing and mingling, but spice up the night with a few rounds of limbo, a conga line, and a path-thrashing.

BEVERAGES

Rum drinks are great for Caribbean parties. And never miss an opportunity to serve drinks in coconut halves! Here are a few drink recipes with coconut rum:

Malibu Bay Breeze

Combine 1-1/2 ounces of coconut rum, 2 ounces cranberry juice, and 2 ounces of pineapple juice. Pour ingredients over ice into a high ball glass (if you are not using the coconut halves), and garnish with fresh pineapple pieces.

Banana Sunrise

Combine 1-ounce creme de banana, 1-ounce pina colada mix, and 1-ounce coconut rum in a shaker with ice. Pour into a high ball glass, and fill drink to the rim with orange juice. If you aren’t squeezing the oranges for the juice by hand, then buy juice with lots of pulp. Garnish with a slice of orange.

Caribbean Coconut Snake Punch

In a punch bowl and over ice, combine equal parts Southern Comfort, coconut rum, and amaretto, so that the punch bowl is slightly more than halfway full. Add a splash of grenadine and a splash of sour mix. Fill to the top with lemon-lime soda.

If you are going to have children at your party, or if you think that some of your guests will want non-alcoholic alternatives, try this drink recipe:

Tropical Treasures

In a blender, combine ½ cup pineapple chunks, ½ cup bananas, 1 cup orange juice, and ¾ cups crushed ice in a blender. Pour into a coconut cup, and garnish with a pineapple slice.

Soda Caribbean

This drink is very simple. Just combine 2 ounces of any fresh fruit juice with seltzer water over ice. It is a refreshing non-alcoholic treat!

You should also have fresh juices on hand, such as orange, pineapple, grapefruit, and banana.

APPETIZERS

Coconut shrimp is an excellent appetizer with a Caribbean flair. Here is a great recipe:

Ingredients: 50 large raw de-veined shrimp, 1-1/4 cups flour, 4 large eggs, 6-1/2 cups shredded coconut.

Directions: Coat the shrimp thoroughly with flour, and then dip each shrimp in the egg. Next, roll them in the shredded coconut until they are thoroughly covered. Deep fry at 375 degrees until golden-brown. Serve with cocktail sauce that is combined with some fresh crushed pineapples.

MAIN COURSE

Jerk chicken is a great dish to capture the Caribbean flavor. This recipe is for 6 servings, so plan accordingly depending on the number of guests you will be entertaining.

Ingredients: 1/4 cup chopped onion, 1 tablespoon thyme, 2-1/2 teaspoons sugar, 1 teaspoon red pepper, 1/2 teaspoon allspice, 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, 1 tablespoon oil, 3 whole frying chickens, cut up, about 3 pounds each.

Directions: In a food processor, combine all ingredients except for the chicken, and blend to a paste. Liberally coat your chicken pieces in the blended mixture. Refrigerate pieces in a covered container for at least 4 hours. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until the chicken is tender and the juices are clear. Serve on a bed of wild rice.

Directions

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