Our Top 5 Recipes for Effortless Parties
Crowd-pleasing and easy on the host? We're sold.
Photo: Steve Giralt
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The Guaranteed Main-Course Hit
Italian cookbook author Lidia Matticchio Bastianich loves to entertain, and one of her go-to dishes for hosting friends or family is pasta, because it's cheap and everyone—kids and adults—loves it. This homey meal from her new book, Lidia's Celebrate Like an Italian
, combines the carbs with meat and veggies, so you don't even have to serve a side. First, you brown sausage in olive oil; then add garlic, red-pepper flakes and chopped escarole. The greens wilt, the sausage browns and you pour in some chicken stock to create a savory sauce. Meanwhile, you boil pasta (Bastianich uses mezzi rigatoni but you can also swap in another tube-shaped pasta such as ziti, penne or rigatoni—anything that will catch the bits of sausage and escarole). When it's done, use a slotted spoon or spider strainer to scoop the pasta straight into the sauce, toss everything together and serve with grated cheese.
Get the recipe: Mezzi Rigatoni with Sausage and Escarole