rains it pours

perfecting the “done before they arrive” dinner party- a work in progress
Categories: Appetizers, Soups, Dinner Party, Posted on October 29, 2011 by Sandy Bergsten - Comments (1)
Entertaining can be a bit like dating. One minute you’re happily adjusting to a short dry spell when suddenly you get hit with a deluge. The floodgates open here for the next eight days. Time to grab an umbrella and put the “done before they arrive” plan in high gear.
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in good company

perfecting the “done before they arrive” dinner party- a work in progress
Categories: Meat, Grains and Pasta, Desserts, Dinner Party, Posted on October 14, 2011 by Sandy Bergsten - Comments (0)
Tonight I am having some new friends who are on the fast track to becoming dear ones. Thought it only appropriate to pull a treasured cookbook off the shelf. Opening one of Marcella Hazan’s invaluable references is like having an Italian great-aunt guiding you in the kitchen. For the American
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focus on the positive

perfecting the “done before the arrive” dinner party- a work in progress
Categories: Appetizers, Soups, Fish and Seafood, Veggies and Sides, Desserts, Dinner Party, Posted on September 30, 2011 by Sandy Bergsten - Comments (0)
The other night we had some dear friends over for dinner that have some significant dietary restrictions. When I first surveyed the list Billy Preston’s “nothing from nothing” ran through my head. Then I spied this past Sunday’s New York Times Week in Review on the kitchen table. Mark Bittman’s
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triple crown

perfecting the “done before the arrive” dinner party- a work in progress
Categories: Appetizers, Salads and Dressings, Fish and Seafood, Poultry, Grains and Pasta, Veggies and Sides, Dinner Party, Wine Line, Posted on September 25, 2011 by Sandy Bergsten - Comments (0)
Entertaining you want to take some risks but also hedge a few bets. Old wines are a wild card. You can dust them off, stand them up, but until you uncork them what they hold is an unknown- could be a home run or has-been. Most often there is little
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stand at attention

perfecting the “done before the arrive” dinner party- a work in progress
Categories: Appetizers, Dinner Party, Wine Line, Posted on September 20, 2011 by Sandy Bergsten - Comments (0)
Saturday night we are going to have a little wine dinner at our house. I have a few oldies and hopefully goodies tucked away (beside some carpet remnants and folding chairs – you’ll find no pictures of my “cellar” on my iPhone.)The fun in having an evening that revolves around
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double feature

perfecting the done before they arrive dinner party- a work in progress
Categories: Salads and Dressings, Fish and Seafood, Veggies and Sides, Desserts, Dinner Party, Posted on July 23, 2011 by Sandy Bergsten - Comments (0)
Drinks were a hit. Almost like train schedules of yore- right on track. Guests arrived at 6:05 and the tracks were clear by 7:09. My new friends and folks loved meeting one another, and the short time frame left everyone wanting more (always a plus). While I knew I didn’t
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accept with pleasure

perfecting the done before they arrive dinner party- a work in progress
Categories: Salads and Dressings, Soups, Breads, Pizza, Tarts, Dinner Party, Wine Line, Posted on July 10, 2011 by Sandy Bergsten - Comments (0)
Many dinner guests ask if they can bring something. Don’t be shy- take them up on their kind offer. Consider your weak suit (or as I say to my consulting clients your “growth edge”). Personally I love when a guest brings dessert or an appetizer. With those bookends out of
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big chill

perfecting the done before they arrive dinner party- a work in progress
Categories: Salads and Dressings, Soups, Dinner Party, Posted on July 9, 2011 by Sandy Bergsten - Comments (0)
Tomorrow night is essentially a soup and salad supper with a few embellishments. One of the best things about serving gazpacho is that it really should be made in advance. It needs about a day in the frig for all the flavors to properly meld. Thank goodness for Trader Joe’s.
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setting the date

perfecting the done before they arrive dinner party- a work in progress
Categories: Salads and Dressings, Soups, Breads, Pizza, Tarts, Dinner Party, Eating Out, Posted on July 8, 2011 by Sandy Bergsten - Comments (0)
Sometimes it’s easier to plan a spur of the moment party than trying to get one on the books weeks or months in advance. More often than not the busiest of folks can find a last minute opening in an otherwise over-scheduled calendar. Happily one of these synergetic moments is
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