They don't necessarily need to be anything fancy, it could be an entree item or it could be a simple side dish, or perhaps some fun desert. Those if you who enjoy cooking, what are some of your most lauded things you've made for yourself and others? I'm a huge fan of all things potatoes, so I take great pride in making some killer mashed potatoes, whipped potatoes, au gratin potatoes, scalloped potatoes, and home fries in particular. I don't have a deep fryer, nor do I like using so much oil at home, so I don't make french fries though, aside from the occasional oven baked ones. I'm pretty minimalist when it comes to making these potato dishes as well - usually just 2% milk, real butter, sea salt and black pepper for the mashed potatoes. No gilding the lily with all kinds of extras such as sour cream, cream cheese and other stuff - it just turns them into a gluey mess. No shortcuts on the au gratin potatoes either, I make a bechamel sauce from scratch and layer it with sharp cheddar and romano. Bake it until it's super tender then broil it on to get some color on the cheese. Russet potatoes only, too. Others are either too waxy and or too sweet. Any sort of quick chicken in a pan sauce with wine recipe, such as Chicken Marsala, Chicken Picatta and others, I enjoy making as well. These are popular dishes at restaurants but there are so easy to make at home and impress friends with too. Plus the pan sauce is a nice way to gussy up plain old chicken breasts. Though I sometimes also make them with the skin on (but still boneless) too.