For Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day, baby girl showers, bridal showers, or any other occasion demanding that you ”think pink”: All the food and drink are in shades of pink, with some touches of deeper rose and red.
There’s also a National Pink Day on June 23rd.
If you want to hold your own party, menu options are below. It can be a cocktail party—pink cocktails, pink nibbles—or an entire dinner or buffet.
You can make anything more pink with beet juice, red food color or rosy accents like pomegranate arils, raspberries and strawberries. You can make sauces and soups pinker with a touch of crème fraîche, mascarpone, sour cream, or plain yogurt.
You can keep it all pink and rose, or add bright red and burgundy accents.
You are encouraged guests to wear something pink to the party (pink nail polish counts).
PINK PARTY MENU
PINK & RED COCKTAILS
Champagne cocktail with pink sparkling wine
Classic pink cocktails like Pink Lady and Pink Squirrel
Pink Champagne and strawberry punch
Pink Jell-O Shots (recipes)
Pink sparkling wine (Yellowtail and Martini are great values)
PINK & RED WINES
There are scores and scores of pink cocktails—just search online.
RED & PINK APPETIZERS
Bruschetta with strawberry-basil or tomato topping
Crudités: red bell peppers, radishes, cherry tomatoes, red Belgian endive, etc., with spicy pink dip (recipe below); you can include some celery, fennel or other pale vegetables for variety
Goat cheese log rolled in pink peppercorns
Hot dogs in jelly-mustard dip
Pink deviled eggs (soak peeled whole eggs in beet juice or food color)
Poached shrimp with cocktail sauce
Red pepper dip
Shrimp spread with crackers
Shrimp tea sandwiches
Smoked salmon or gravlax platter
Smoked salmon pinwheels or tea sandwiches
Smoked salmon rillettes
Strawberry bruschetta (recipe)
Taramasalata (Greek caviar dip) with crackers or party breads
Tuna sushi and spicy tuna rolls
Cranberry or pomegranate juice spritzers (with white wine) or mocktails
Vodka and pink lemonade
 Always a hit: rosé champagne or other sparkling rosé wine (photo courtesy Tommy Bahama).  Hibiscus Margarita, with a bit of hibiscus syrup for color (you can use regular food color) and a rim of hibiscus salt (photo courtesy Miro Kitchen).  Smoked salmon tartine (photo courtesy Ocean Cut Chicago).  Cherry tomato-burrata crostini (photo courtesy Good Eggs).
 Lobster bisque. You can serve soup shooters on a buffet. Photo courtesy MackenzieLtd.com.  Think pink with poached salmon (photo courtesy Pom Wonderful).  An easy dessert: sorbet, sparkling wine, berries (here’s the recipe from The Cookie Rookie).  You can buy this rose-topped cake from Williams-Sonoma.
FOR A PINK & RED BUFFET OR SIT-DOWN DINNER
PINK & RED SOUPS
Borscht (you can turn it from red to pink with sour cream)
Cream of tomato soup
Lobster or shrimp bisque
Red bell pepper purée
Tomato or watermelon gazpacho
Pasta in pink sauce
Rare beef (we’re poaching a filet mignon)
Shrimp & strawberry salad (recipe in footnote* below)
Steak tartare or tuna tartare
PROTEINS & OTHER MAINS
Beet salad or pickled beets
Cherry tomato salad
Radicchio and radish salad with pickled red onions
PINK & RED SIDES
*Combine 3 cups cooked rice, 1/2 pound cooked, sliced shrimp and 3/4 cup thinly sliced celery in a large bowl. Make dressing with 2/3 cup mayonnaise, 1/2 cup strawberry yogurt, 1 teaspoon dry mustard, 1 teaspoon lemon juice and salt to taste. Dress the salad and then fold in 1-1/2 cups sliced fresh strawberries. Chill and serve on a bed of greens.
Fresh strawberries and raspberries
Mignardises: pink cake pops, macarons, marshmallows, mini strawberry cupcakes
Pears poached in red wine
Pink frosted cake or cake pops
Pink ice pops (freeze your own from cherry or pomegranate juice)
Raspberry or strawberry mousse
Red velvet cake, cupcakes, donuts, ice cream
Raspberry or strawberry sorbet float (add rosé champagne to a glass of sorbet)
Strawberry ice cream cake
Strawberry milkshake shooters
Watermelon: granita or fruit salad
PINK & RED DESSERTS
RECIPE: SPICY PINK SALAD DRESSING OR DIP FOR CRUDITÉS
2 cups mayonnaise (full fat)
1 cup sour cream
1/2 cup sherry wine (not cooking sherry)
1 tablespoon dried tarragon, finely crushed or 1-1/2 tablespoons minced fresh tarragon
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon hot sauce sauce, or to taste
2-3 drops red food coloring or beet juice
1. MIX mayonnaise, sour cream, sherry, tarragon, garlic powder and hot sauce until well blended.
2. ADD a few drops of food coloring to desired shade of pink. If the dressing is too thick, you can thin it with a small amount of milk. Chill well before serving.
Recipe courtesy Food.com.
†Mignardises (min-yar-DEEZ, from the French for “precious”) are a type of miniature baked good, also called petit-fours, a group of small sweets beyond what Americans think of as petit-fours (small cubes of layer cake). Mignardises are bite-size or smaller, and are served with coffee and liqueur at the end of the meal. At restaurants they are a lagniappe (lon-YAP), a small gift from the house.
Mignardises is a category that includes petit-fours. The delicacies can take many forms and shapes: mini cakes and cookies including macarons, as well as non-baked sweets such as glazed or chocolate-dipped fruit, marzipan, chocolates, pâte de fruits and nut clusters.
Petit-fours is French for “small baked pastries. There are two styles of petit-fours: glacée (iced) and sec (dry). Petit-fours glacées or frais (fresh) include filled and/or iced petit-fours, miniature babas, miniature éclairs, tiny iced cakes and tartlets. Petit-fours secs include small cookies, macaroons, meringues, palmiers and tuiles.
Friandises (free-yon-DEEZ), from the French for “delicate,” is a term often used instead of petit-fours or mignardises.
According to The Oxford Companion To Food, these terms are often used interchangeably; and of course, it is not surprising when word meanings evolve over time.