Bright Bites for Summer Nights

There is nothing I would rather do then to sit beneath the trees and a summer sunset with my friends . Through trial and tribulation, I have discovered the key to entertaining is to keep your food simple and use what you have on hand (a glass of champagne in the other doesn’t hurt either).  

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The Table

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White. My rule of thumb is to use some sort of white table cloth and really let the food do the talking.  Here, I actually used what I had on hand which turned out to be lace curtain.


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Keep it fresh. I always like to include a brightness with either candle light or herb/flowers.  The center pieces are composed of wild flowers, kale, parsley, and basil that I picked from the garden and put in all different types of mason jars I had laying around the house.


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Personalize it. Show your guests they are loved with a simple card or name tag.


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Make a speciality cocktail for your guests. This will both make your life easier and makes your guests feel special. Here, I made farmers market watermelon pops and poured over the champagne!


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Watermelon Pops

Ingredients: 1 small seedless watermelon

1 tbsp of pure vanilla extract

2 tbsp sugar

Pinch of salt

Cube watermelon and fill your blender entirely. Add vanilla and sugar. Pulse until smooth. Then, pour watermelon puree into molds, it should be very loose.  I did not have any luck finding a popsicle mold, but I did have a mini pop over tin on hand that worked out perfectly! Let the puree firm up a bit for about 10 minutes, then place your sticks in the center of each pop. Freeze until solid.


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Then serve in a glass of champagne! This specialty cocktail is light, crisp, naturally fruity and an overall crowd pleaser.

Bright Bites

Some people tend to underestimate the power of veggies in a spread. However, vegetables are vibrant, nutritious, and fresh.  I think we often get stuck in a rut and serve up some limp celery sticks, lackluster tomatoes, and watery cucumber slices… BORING! Pick the brightest and most seasonal veggies you can find then serve them along my Parmesan Pea Puree.  I know, I know… pea puree??  You might hate peas or think this sounds like baby food. But trust me on this one, its the perfect fresh and silky dip for veggies and crostini’s.


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Parmesan Pea Puree

2 cups of frozen thawed peas

1/1 cup grated parmesan cheese

1 clove of garlic

2 tsp chopped parsley

2 tsp chopped scallions

1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

salt and pepper to taste

Place your peas, parmesan, garlic, parsley, and scallions into the blender. Pulse it until everything gets moving together.  Once the puree is slightly smooth, slowly drizzle in your olive oil until everything is emulsified together into a silky dip.  Garnish with peas, parsley, and parmesan.

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Simply wrap ripe sweet peaches with salty prosciutto.

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Cubano Sliders

Hawaiian slider rolls


American Cheese

Mozzarella Cheese


Slice the Hawaiian rolls horizontally so you have one large sandwich. Layer the rolls with ham, cheese and one pickle per slider.  Then add the stop layer of rolls and pour over the dijon honey mustard sauce.


2 tbsp honey mustard

2 tbsp dijon mustard

1 tbsp butter

1 tbsp of minced onion

Pop your sliders into the over at 350 until bubbly and golden brown.  This is a really simple, and quick bite that everyone will be sure to enjoy with drinks.

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Mesquite BBQ Blue Cheese Chips

1 bag plain kettle cooked chips

1 bag mesquite BBQ kettle cooked chips

Small brick of blue cheese

1 cup shredded mozzarella

2 cups heavy cream

Chopped red onion

Sliced scallions

It doesn’t get much easier than this.  Pour your two different types on chips into a baking dish and scatted mozzarella over the top.  Now heat your cream over medium low heat until it is warm. Add blue cheese. Stir constantly until your sauce is creamy.  Pour creamy sauce all over the chips and mozzarella. Pop under broiler until melty and crisp. Top with fresh chopped red onions and scallions.

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& Beautiful Friends

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It doesn’t hurt to have such a gorgeous group of foodies by my side. Thanks for letting me photograph the food before you actually get to dig in and always giving feedback.  Love you all!


Please feel free to reach out with any questions about these recipes or entertaining!

You can find me at

Xo Kitchen Bird




6 Comments Add yours

  1. Karen Calicchia says:

    Jamie , everything looks amazing and you gave me so many great ideas!!!!

    1. kitchenbird says:

      Thank you!! That makes me so happy 🙂

  2. Cathy Carter says:

    Your presentation is very inviting. The food looks delicious!

    1. kitchenbird says:

      Love the feedback, thanks for reading, Cathy!!

  3. Megan Lupi says:

    I’m craving the cubanos!!!!! Thinking of them makes my mouth water

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