Seafood Extravaganza Dinner Party Menu

My neighborhood’s Gourmet Dinner party group met a couple of weekends ago for our monthly themed dinner.  I hosted this time with a Seafood Extravaganza! Dinner Menu.  I’ll be sharing the entire menu with all recipes on this post- just click recipe titles below to reach actual, printable recipes.

EIGHTEEEN friends came to my dinner.  I know, crazy huh?  Before you think I’m too crazy to do this, I need to let you know that I just hosted the party, planned the menu, and each couple brought a dish.  That’s much more manageable and un-crazy.   For my table decor, I went with some simple white tablecloths, blue dishes, sand-colored napkins, sea-inspired candles and a few shells and starfish.  Oh, and the most important table decoration of all… fish swimming in vases!  (Don’t worry- the fish were ALL taken home by my guests to add to the fish tanks in their homes, but not before our friend Brad thought it would be fun to terrorize them by swishing a butter knife around in the vase.  Geez, Brad.).  They made for pretty cute centerpieces though.

And if you look closely, you’ll see some salt-water taffy scattered on the table too.  My guests enjoyed nibbling on those after dinner, and they fit into the theme just right.  Warning:  black striped taffy usually means that it tastes like black licorice.  In other words, chew it up, then realize how gross it is and then spit it into your napkin.  Uck.

We set up a simple serve-yourself bar in our backyard.  Something for everyone.

Featured beverage: the  Sea Breeze Cocktail, of course!

Appetizer #1:  Bacon- Wrapped Scallops with Spicy Cilantro-Mayonnaise

Appetizer #2:  Smoked Salmon Deviled Eggs

Appetizer #3:  Hot Crab and Artichoke Dip

Appetizer #4:  Shrimp Ceviche

Side Dish:  Summer Gratin

Main Dish #1:  Baked Salmon with Creamy Coconut-Ginger Sauce over Coconut- Ginger Rice

Main Dish #2:  Tequila-Lime Shrimp Tacos with Chipotle Cream

Dessert:  Key Lime Pie

The dinner was a smashing success!  And by that I mean that the plates were licked clean, there was a lot of whooping and hollering and toasting going on, our last guests left at about 12:30AM, and I needed Advil the next day.

All of the seafood came from Anderson Seafoods (via overnight delivery, arriving fresh and perfect!  Many thanks to Anderson Seafoods for managing to get the seafood to me in the midst of our crazy Southern California Blackout!)  Favorites of my guests were the scallops and the salmon.  It was a lot of food!  I over-planned a bit since I was serving 18 people.  A couple of appetizers would have been plenty, and we definitely did not need two entrees.  The key lime pie was much loved too.

I’d kinda like to do a wild & crazy 7 Deadly Sins Dinner Party next (recipes based on themes of the 7 deadly sins), or maybe some kind of 70′s throwback recipes dinner.  I’m running out of dinner party ideas… so let me know if you’ve got any?!

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25 Responses to “Seafood Extravaganza Dinner Party Menu”

  1. 1

    Jacqueline — September 26, 2011 @ 4:28 AM

    18 Dinner guests! Eek! I don’t think I have as much crockery and cutlery to serve 18. Well done on what looks to be a sumptuous meal Lori! The bacon wrapped scallops and the salmon with coconut and ginger sauce are the front runners for me ;-)

  2. 2

    Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga — September 26, 2011 @ 4:31 AM

    Lori you throw a party like no other….WOW!

    It all looks…fabulous!!!

  3. 3

    Janet — September 26, 2011 @ 6:53 AM

    Oh how fun! I love the theme, too. While your hard work was evident, it looks like a delicious and relaxing time was had by all ;) I’ve always wanted to host a murder mystery party, where guests come dressed in character and all try to guess the whodunit hints!

  4. 4

    janetha — September 26, 2011 @ 7:45 AM

    This is one of the best themed dinner party ideas I have EVER seen. Bravo.

  5. 5

    Jeff Deasy — September 26, 2011 @ 12:02 PM

    What an wonderful array of seafood delights..I want those deviled eggs now!

  6. 6

    roxx — September 26, 2011 @ 12:27 PM

    we belonged to a dinner party group years ago and I think the part I liked best was the menu planning and portioning out who would make what . . . I LOVE this seafood theme . . . I may have to borrow it . . .

    meantime, I’ve only been following you for a short time so I don’t know if you’ve done these before, but here are some of the menu plans I can remember from our dinner club days:

    Fondue – with everything from appetizer to dessert being fondue-d in some way

    Things you wouldn’t eat when you were a kid but love now – included rabbit, cabbage and such

    I’m italian and so one year we did a traditional italian Christmas Eve feast which was mostly traditional fish and seafood dishes

    Brunch for dinner (we all wore pjs to dinner that time) – the main course was eggs benedict but the “ham/bacon” was replaced by pan fried salmon trout filets . . . yummmm!

    Game night – where each course featured some sort of wild game . . .

    thanks again for a great column!!!

  7. 7

    Lori Lange — September 26, 2011 @ 12:34 PM

    Awesome ideas- thank you!

  8. 8

    Diane {Created by Diane} — September 26, 2011 @ 10:55 PM

    What a fun party, everything looks so wonderful!

  9. 9

    The Mrs @ Success Along the Weigh — September 27, 2011 @ 5:17 AM

    Oh my! I want to be your friend and invited to a dinner party! ;-)

    I love the idea of a 70′s party with old school recipes!

  10. 10

    Jen DZ — September 27, 2011 @ 2:58 PM

    My mouth is watering! What a lovely collection of dishes! I think my man and I might just have to try the Tequila-Lime Shrimp Tacos this weekend! Thanks!

  11. 11

    LiztheChef — September 27, 2011 @ 3:13 PM

    Looks like the dinner party of the summer – I will have to look for Anderson’s Seafood. Terrific post, Lori.

  12. 12

    Ida — September 27, 2011 @ 6:49 PM

    Oh my stars the food looks and sounds amazing. Love your table setting and how come you aren’t my neighbor?

  13. 13

    Dana B — September 28, 2011 @ 5:00 PM

    This looks like it was loads of fun. Love how the sauce on the salmon was in the shape of a sea star :) I would love to do a murder mystery dinner party sometime. Tho I have had many dinner parties, somehow it has never happened. So, why don’t you have one, report on it of course, and then I can have one vicariously through your blog :)

  14. 14

    Denise — September 30, 2011 @ 4:50 PM

    Hi Lori,

    I saw you in the UT food blogger article! We love culinary theme parties, and I’ve been trying to get our group to do the dinner party thing during the Coronado Concert in the Park off-season (during the summer, we do a different theme each Sunday and have done some pretty wild ones). My friend, Brad, would probably also be the one to stick his knife in the fish bowl ;-)

  15. 15

    Brittany — October 4, 2011 @ 12:19 AM

    This is so cute. I want to join your dinner party group!!!!

  16. 16

    Leigh Johnson — October 28, 2011 @ 7:03 PM

    Lori always love your stuff! My fav dinner party ever I called “regional.”. Everyone had to bring a dish reflective of where they were from (or if couldn’t do that, then reflecting ethnic or aspect of identity). It was hilarious and delicious and made for amazing stories as we got to know new things about each other! I couldn’t decide whether to award first or booby prize to ny friends who brought Kentucky fried chicken (would some fab BBQ been too much to ask?) :)

  17. 17

    Lori Lange — October 29, 2011 @ 10:14 AM

    How fun! Love that idea for a dinner party! Miss seeing you around these parts!

  18. 18

    Joy — February 12, 2012 @ 9:37 AM

    I am throwing a seafood party for my boyfriend and our friends. I love your idea on here. When you said you had each couple bring a dish…did you assign one of the dishes you feature above or did they all bring something in addition to what you made?

  19. 19

    Lori Lange — February 12, 2012 @ 5:19 PM

    I planned the entire menu and gave each of my friends a recipe to prepare and bring.

  20. 20

    Brooke — April 1, 2012 @ 5:43 PM

    Awesome ideas!! We’re having a clam bake this summer and I love your app ideas!!! Some other theme ideas could be a Mad Men party (complete with coming in your favorite 60′s attire!) and research food from the 60′s. You could also do a “blast from the past” (where everyone wears normal clothes but adds one thing from their past, like a favorite t-shirt from high school or the veil from their wedding) and you serve foods that were popular when you were a child. Thanks so much for the ideas :-)

  21. 21

    Anastasia — December 23, 2012 @ 4:05 AM

    Hey Lori, I just stumbled upon your blog and the menu looks yummy! Im planning a small seafood feast for Christmas & im going to try your creamy coconut salmon & rice. Happy holidays :)

  22. 22

    Lori Lange — December 23, 2012 @ 6:34 AM

    Great- hope you enjoy it as much as we did!

  23. 23

    Simone — January 7, 2013 @ 1:01 PM

    Hi Lori,
    This is great! How did you serve everyone (plate everything)? WIth seafood, there is the time/freshness factor. Did your guests walk in at a specific time and you immediately started serving? Or were you cooking the main entrees (salmon) while guests gnoshed at the appetizers and fixed themselves drinks? Wondering how to keep all the seafood at a good temperature and servable…Thanks!

  24. 24

    Lori Lange — January 7, 2013 @ 3:46 PM

    Since our dinner group works together in preparing the meal, it was a team effort!

  25. 25

    Jan Bjerrring — January 7, 2014 @ 3:42 AM

    Thank you! Used your receipes to serve my wife a tête á tête dinner and now she loves me even more! Jan