Other than my cat's birthday, I don't throw many parties. Most nights my husband and I are content with our quiet unsocial life and casual approach to dinner-it only has to please us. But since the holidays are here, I've got the urge to throw another leaf in my dining room table, get out the matching plates and invite people over for dinner.

Easy, fast and delicious: that's my kind of entertaining. Here are a few fabulous easy quick dinners that are festive enough for a holiday dinner party:

Quick Chicken Cordon Bleu: To make traditional cordon bleu, you layer prosciutto (or other ham) and cheese in between thin slices of chicken or veal, then bread and sauté the whole stack. This quick, easy version keeps the flavors the same, but skips the fussy layering and breading steps. Serve with: Delicata squash and broccoli.

For Seared Scallops with Crispy Leeks, all I have to do is mash some potatoes and steam some vegetables and I've made the transition to competent hostessing.

Because I can never resist buying cranberries at this time of year, I'll make Turkey Tenderloin with Cranberry-Shallot Sauce and bring it out with a flourish.

I'll also be able to entertain vegetarians unapologetically, with Acorn Squash Stuffed with Chard & White Beans.