chill out

perfecting the “done before they arrive” dinner party- a work in progress
Categories: Appetizers, Poultry, Desserts, Dinner Party, Posted on November 2, 2011 by Sandy Bergsten - Comments (1)
The old saying a stitch in time saves nine holds true when entertaining multiple gatherings. Tonight’s dinner is the first of four. I’ve been strategically stocking the freezer with key components. These designated hitters when brought in from the cold will hit a homer each time they come up to
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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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