If you've ever wanted to go back in time and visit the Roaring '20s, the era of Prohibition, speakeasies and the Charleston, you can recreate the 1920s in your home with a party themed after the decade. Planning the food for a 1920s-themed party might seem challenging, but most of the items you can serve are simple, authentic and still familiar to us in the 21st century.
Gin was the beverage of the decade, so be sure to plan for the traditional martini to grace your party. You don't have to limit yourself to gin, however because other types of alcohol made its way into the speakeasies of the Prohibition era too. Champagne punch, which is a mixture of tea, sugar, soda water, brandy, rum and, of course, champagne, is another option. Additionally, consider adding mint juleps to your list of party beverages. Requiring only bourbon, mint, sugar and water, the mint julep makes for a fresh cocktail that still reflects the era you are trying to recreate at your party.
Snacks may be as simple as chips in the right container. Consider using a violin case or a lined fedora to create authenticity. Check with a party store to see if it carries foil-covered chocolates that are shaped like champagne bottles. Additionally, you could provide chocolate-covered cherries or fudge, both of which were popular during the 1920s.
Appetizers and Simple Dishes
The ever-popular dish of deviled eggs is appropriate to the era, while still being an easy dish to prepare for a party. Cabbage rolls, assembled with ground beef, rice, and some simple pantry seasonings, will please your guests. For a main course, consider preparing a traditional barbecue sauce of ketchup, cider vinegar, Tabasco sauce and strong spices such as cayenne and chili powder. Let this simmer for several hours. Meanwhile, prepare ribs of your choice–either beef or pork–and pour the sauce over ribs. This dish will be both authentic and popular.
Rice pudding dates from well before the 1920s but remained a popular dish well into the 20th century, so consider adding this to your list of desserts. For more familiar desserts, ice cream fits the era, as will Jell-O, which made its first appearance at the end of the 19th century and has been popular ever since. For even more authenticity, consider adding the Jell-O to banana splits. It was served this way during the Roaring '20s. For cake, angel food cake or other simple cakes are accurate for the decade and remain party favorites.