Jenni’s website is where do-it-yourself projects come to life! Started in 2010, the site is focused on the latest trends in fashion and home, and showing you how to recreate them for less. The ISPYDIY site has now expanded into a warehouse studio space that she uses to host events and teaching craft classes!
A couple weeks ago I threw an amazing rooftop movie night at the Sheraton Brooklyn New York Hotel with some of my good friends. It has been a minute since I've gotten together with my girls from the intern days at InStyle, so I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to gab a little, and indulge in a romantic comedy.
We were spoiled with the most delicious food from the Sheraton's new Paired tasting menu, with Diet Coke®, made up of artisanal small plates and a very fancy take on the traditional bar snacks. It was honestly so nice to get a little blissful break from all the craziness and just hang out and catch up with friends, it makes my heart happy that even though the years pass, we don't skip a beat when we get together.
It was exactly what I needed after being so busy lately.
So today I wanted to share some tips for hosting your own rooftop or backyard movie party to make the night perfect!
- Tip #1: Set the mood with a pile of plush pillows for your guests to relax on, and cozy blankets for when it gets chilly.
- Tip #2: The décor is essential to set the theme for the night, so get some colorful rugs and bright accessories for ambiance.
- Tip #3: Make sure you have a variety of good food, Fried Mac & Cheese and Smoked Bacon Bites will make your mouth water (recipe below)! Adding popcorn and Diet Coke® is always a great idea, and bonus points if you can get your hands on a vintage popper.
- Tip #4: Movie choice is key, since we were having an all girl’s night on a New York rooftop, we went for the classic NYC love story, When Harry Met Sally
- Tip #5: It’s all in the details! Fun marquee lights are an inexpensive and unique way to shine a little light on the event
- Tip #6: Make your guest feel super special with personalize Coke bottles (make them here) with your friend’s names on them. It’s a great keepsake and reminder of an unforgettable night!
Fried Mac & Cheese and Smoked Bacon Bites
1⁄2 teaspoon hot mustard
1⁄2 teaspoon salt
4 tablespoons of shaved butter
1⁄2 cup sour cream
4 cups béchamel sauce
3 eggs beaten
1 cup asiago cheese shredded
2 cup sharp yellow cheddar
1 cup grated jalapeno jack cheese
4 cups cooked cavatelli pasta
1⁄2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 cup cooked and hand chopped double smoked bacon
In a medium saucepan add béchamel sauce and heat slowly. Fold in cheeses until melted and smooth. Remove from heat and add hot mustard, shaved butter, sour cream and black pepper. Let cool.
In a large mixing bowl add cooked pasta, fold in beaten eggs and double smoked bacon. Once ingredients are evenly distributed add the cold béchamel to the pasta and fold in lightly until pasta is completely coated.
If you have a “V” mold fill with Mac n Cheese mixture and press firmly into vessel.
Bake Mac n Cheese for 1 hour at 350 then set aside and let cool to firm up.
Remove from mold once cool and slice into 1⁄2 inch slices.
Using breading station mixture with all-purpose flour, seasoned egg wash & herb seasoned parmesan panko bread crumbs, bread each slice in double coating. In hot oil fry each piece and then let rest on paper towel to remove excess oil.
Recipe from: Executive Chef Paul Paboudjian, Sheraton Centre Toronto