summer obsession

food detective
Categories: Appetizers, Salads and Dressings, Sauces and Such, Dinner for Two, Supper, Dinner Party, Lunch, Posted on September 5, 2022 by Sandy Bergsten
What is better than a just-picked off-the-vine tomato? How about it’s perfect accompaniment!  If you love caprese salad with thick slices of beefsteak, rounds of mozzarella, a hefty drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and plenty of fresh basil, you might just flip for this tomato salad featuring whipped ricotta. I adore whipped ricotta and get very
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circle that date

food detective
Categories: Appetizers, Salads and Dressings, Fish and Seafood, Sauces and Such, Dinner for Two, Sources, Posted on January 31, 2022 by Sandy Bergsten
I can’t believe Valentine’s Day is right around the corner. I don’t know about you, but my January wasn’t what I’d envisioned. I was really looking forward to a fresh start to the new year. Hitting the town, trying new restaurants, entertaining, dressing up. Instead, everything seemed to once again take an insular turn. I was hoping getting back
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redo I do

perfecting the "done before they arrive" party- a work in progress What fun to keep the party going. When my daughter made the tough decision to downsize her wedding she asked if I would host a party for her Chicago friends later in the fall. My answer was a resounding yes! As the date approached my daughter reminded me that this was actually going to be a small wedding not simply a cocktail reception. Which
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practice makes perfect

perfecting the "done before they arrive" party- a work in progress
Categories: Meat, Veggies and Sides, Sauces and Such, Dinner Party, Sources, Well Equipped, Fête Fact, Posted on July 6, 2021 by Sandy Bergsten
A few weeks ago, after returning to Chicago we had our first dinner party. I was so excited to plan the menu, at long last set our table for more than two, and prep for the evening. I thought I had it all planned out perfectly. Turns out I was more than a little out of practice. I hate when I have people over and I find myself stranded in the
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shot in the arm

perfecting the "done before they arrive" party- a work in progress
Categories: Fish and Seafood, Veggies and Sides, Sauces and Such, Dinner for Two, Supper, Dinner Party, Well Equipped, Posted on April 11, 2021 by Sandy Bergsten
Getting that second vaccine dose was like a heavy door unlocking. It was almost surreal allowing myself to think of possibilities and the thought of making plans. I was so excited to invite our first guests over for dinner. And erring on the side of caution, and because we are in southern California, I knew we could dine outside. What I didn’t
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put yourself at the table

perfecting the "done before they arrive" party- a work in progress
Categories: Appetizers, Meat, Veggies and Sides, Sauces and Such, Desserts, Dinner Party, Sources, Fête Fact, Posted on September 21, 2019 by Sandy Bergsten
Isn’t it fun going to those upscale gourmet grocers and walking past their cases filled with amazing prepared fare? While tempting, picking up an entire dinner party that way can cost a small fortune. So, what should you do when you want the convenience of having everything made well in advance but you either want to showcase your own cooking and
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two from the sidelines

perfecting the "done before they arrive" party- a work in progress
Categories: Veggies and Sides, Sauces and Such, Dinner Party, Fête Fact, Posted on November 11, 2018 by Sandy Bergsten
It’s that time of year. People you love gather. And whether you are hosting a turkey dinner for twenty or a more intimate affair here are a couple tried and true sides guaranteed to add holiday sparkle to any table. No one needs to know you can make these both weeks ahead of time then strategically pull them out of your freezer on the big day.
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get cracking

perfecting the "done before they arrive" party- a work in progress
Categories: Fish and Seafood, Sauces and Such, Dinner for Two, Dinner Party, Sources, Fête Fact, Posted on October 28, 2018 by Sandy Bergsten
Each October I travel to Florida to help my dad get settled back into his house after his summer up north. It’s truly a labor of love, filled with a myriad of to-do lists and even more laughs. Don’t get me started on our perennial wrangle over the open condiments he always seems to leave in his refrigerator for five months. That said, I keep my
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out of the box

food detective
Categories: Appetizers, Sauces and Such, Supper, Cocktail Party, Dinner Party, Well Equipped, Posted on June 11, 2017 by Sandy Bergsten
Every month, for the past decade, my husband receives a special delivery from the fruit of the month club. And each month I bring the package in, place it on the counter, and when he comes home from work we pour ourselves a cocktail and survey the box. After a thoughtful draw on our drinks we open it up. The first thing we say to one another is
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taco tuesday

food detective
Categories: Poultry, Meat, Sauces and Such, Posted on April 2, 2017 by Sandy Bergsten
Each day I discover these fabulous emails in my inbox from Bon Appétit, Martha Stewart, and the New York Times, all alerting me to what I should be cooking that day. It’s great marketing, because I click on every one of them. Last week there was one from a continuing series on how to recreate comfort foods. The recipe was for homemade taco
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