Imagine a party where all the foods are made ahead but stay fresh. Where guests serve themselves while you enjoy the conversation. This Mexican-influenced menu of bocaditos (little bites) is just that kind of gathering. (Serves 8)
Mango-Mint Agua Fresca
Mexican Soft Drinks and Beers

Romaine Hearts with Pipián
Sunchoke Dip
Mushroom Bocadillos
Flank Steak Tortitas

Chipotle Crema
and sliced tomatoes

Fruit Wands with Vanilla-Rum Syrup
Pine Nut Panecillos

It's also a party designed for movement: Guests circulate to sample foods arranged at various stations. Begin with refreshing agua fresca and a selection of Mexican soft drinks and beers on a beverage tray positioned to greet arriving guests. Place a salad course of romaine hearts with pipián nearby, and a Jerusalem artichoke dip and morsels of mushroom bocadillos in separate locations. Grill the steak ahead, to serve cold--or just before guests arrive, to serve hot--and present it sliced to stuff into little rolls for two-or-three-bite sandwiches. Combine hand-held fruit wands and pine nut cookies for dessert.