Sep 232010


What do you serve at a monkey party for a 2 year old?

Let’s face it, people can only eat so many bananas and toddlers aren’t going to eat much. With that in mind, I decided on food with a Mexican/tropical/monkey flare that was simple and tasty. Don’t worry, I threw a few bananas into the mix for fun, I couldn’t help myself.

A short, afternoon party (2 -5pm) meant I had to get all the food out at the beginning and be ready to replenish if necessary.

The menu looked something like this:

The Verdict:

The meatballs were a hit….not my favorite thing but I figured “the men folk” needed something substantial to gnaw on. I made 60 and they disappeared…poof! I have no idea where they went? It’s a good thing I ate one before they left the kitchen (quality control…wink, wink). I used frozen meatballs and added a 1/4 cup of grated onion to the sauce outlined in the recipe.

I make the cilantro dip a lot because it’s different than the average dip and it’s a snap to make in the food processor. (Caution: mucho spicy)

The banana and bean empanadas, an idea borrowed from Kelly at Buzzville and her Monkey Party Recap post, were the surprise hit of the day. Everyone “pooh-poohed” the idea (banana and beans?!?!) but loved the taste. We served the turnovers with warm red pepper jelly for dipping. (Note: these are fussy things to make, my Aunt almost had a breakdown chopping and fitting all the filling into the tiny pockets…these are not for anyone with high blood pressure…thank you AC!)

Auntie Alison did the mini pizzas…which rocked. They were supposed to be for the kids but she ended up making 60 because the adults kept scarfing them down. You could put little monkey faces on the pizzas by using black olives, pepperoni and peppers if you have extra time on your hands (yah right?!). We decided to form a frantic assembly line and throw on the toppings at high speed instead of making monkey faces.

Chicken Tortilla Rolls were good filler and a good thing to dunk into the guacamole and salsa. Thanks Costco.

Healthy Handfuls, the store-bought monkey-shaped cookies, sucked. They looked so awful, I did not serve them. My audience was 2 year olds, so you know that’s bad. Talk about false advertising.

The “chocolate dipped frozen banana on a stick” was a highlight. A unique idea that’s fun and super simple to make. We handed them out before the cake, while the kids (and parents) were playing in the yard.  I’m sure you can imagine what the kids looked like with their faces and hands covered in melted banana and chocolate. This is definitely not an indoor treat.

Banana-shaped sugar cookies were super cute and yummy. This recipe never fails and the kids love them. Either the kids are getting older or the Moms are mellowing because no one wanted the plain cookies. ICING for everyone…wooHOO!

The Monkey Cupcakes brought a tear to my eye. Why can’t everything be so easy? Thanks to Auntie Clare, Auntie Lerae and especially to the bottle of wine.

Related posts
Thinking of Planning a Monkey Party?

Calling all monkeys…calling all monkeys

More monkey music…Mommy!

Banana cookies – best of the bunch

Monkey cupcakes made easy

Sep 222010


I’d like to take a moment to rant about these cookies, if I may.

Let’s take a look at the box…now the cookies…now the box again. What’s wrong with this picture? Do the cookies look even remotely like monkeys to you? These misshapen, oblong lumps are not even close (and half of them were stuck together?!?). Another shining example of creative marketing at it’s finest.

I bought the cookies for a monkey party I was throwing for my 2 year old. When I opened the box (mid-party) and saw these things, I was so irritated by how awful they looked that I threw them back in the cupboard.

Three weeks later (yes, it took me that long to get over it), I tried the cookies and actually “downed” half the box. I hate to admit it but they tasted pretty good. Unfortunately, the feeling of being duped has lingered, so my house will now be known as a “monkey-cookie free zone”!

Sep 152010

Let’s make some monkey cupcakes, shall we?

First, I used my Mom’s chocolate cake recipe (the same one I used for the boob cupcakes).  It’s super yummy and a snap to whip together…only one bowl required!

Truth be told, I bought the icing (yes, I know). I could have made it but decided my sanity was more important.

My inspiration for these playful primates came from Amy and her wicked blog, Serving Pink Lemonade.



How to Make Those Marvelous Monkey Cupcakes

Monkey Cupcake Instructions

Decorating goes something like this:

  1. Ice cupcake with store bought chocolate icing
  2. Position a vanilla wafer at the bottom of each cupcake for the muzzle
  3. Place a mini ritz cracker on either side of the face for the ears
  4. Cut miniature marshmallows in half with scissors and reshaped into circles for the eyes
  5. Place narshmallows in the center of the cupcake against the vanilla wafer muzzle
  6. Press mini M&Ms against the marshmallows to make the pupils
  7. Use a piping bag with melted chocolate or an icing pen, or Candy Writer to draw the nose and mouth on the wafer.
  8. Add chocolate sprinkles on the top of the cupcake for hair
  9. Do the happy dance!

Monkey Cupcake Tips

  • Get help, invite a couple of friends over. It’s much more fun that way.
  • Apply marshmallows sticky side out, then your M&M pupils won’t budge
  • M&M’s go dull if refridgerated (important to note if you care about that sort of thing)
  • Make slits on either side of the cupcake to insert the ears
  • Mini Ritz crackers come in a few sizes within the box make sure the ears match

(Thanks to Lerae and AC, who took this picture)

Related posts
Thinking of Planning a Monkey Party?

Calling all monkeys…calling all monkeys

More monkey music…Mommy!

Banana cookies – best of the bunch

Monkey party menu made memorable