the show must go on

perfecting the "done before they arrive" party- a work in progress
Categories: Appetizers, Soups, Grains and Pasta, Cocktail Party, Posted on August 19, 2013 by Sandy Bergsten
Entertaining is all about planning an event ahead of time. So when life throws you a curveball or even a cannon ball what’s a hostess to do? The answer often lies in the reason you were having folks over in the first place. If tragedy hits there’s no shame in canceling, your guests will certainly understand. But most of the time we entertain so we
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vertical dinner party

perfecting the "done before they arrive" party- a work in progress
Categories: Appetizers, Soups, Meat, Grains and Pasta, Desserts, Cocktail Party, Dinner Party, Sources, Posted on June 22, 2013 by Sandy Bergsten
Just taught my first class at DLM’s Cooking School. What a blast! The theme was a “vertical dinner party”. Many of the students arrived wondering what that term actually meant. Truth is I made it up, but it’s my go-to version of a pumped up cocktail party. When you want to entertain a crowd but are pinched for space, time or money instead of a
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skiing in thailand

perfecting the "done before they arrive" party- a work in progress
Categories: Soups, Dinner for Two, Supper, Posted on February 10, 2013 by Sandy Bergsten - Comments (0)
Watch out for those blue diamonds. Cooking can be like skiing the back bowls of Vail. Pay close attention to the ski report. Tonight I’m making a chicken Thai soup. Simple and fresh. Just the punch of color needed to hopefully kick us into spring. But recipes like this one can be the culinary equivalent to skiing moguls. Easier done when you are
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greener pastures

perfecting the "done before they arrive" party- a work in progress
Categories: Salads and Dressings, Soups, Breads, Pizza, Tarts, Supper, Dinner Party, Posted on August 22, 2012 by Sandy Bergsten - Comments (0)
With success on the tart front it’s time to round out our lazy august supper. A simple chilled soup is the perfect way to beat the heat and put your guests at ease. All soups should really be made a day in advance to allow the flavors to meld. Doing so means no mess in the kitchen the day of. And with a chilled soup no last minute heat. To kick off
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take it for a test drive

perfecting the "done before they arrive" party- a work in progress
Categories: Soups, Breads, Pizza, Tarts, Supper, Dinner Party, Posted on August 17, 2012 by Sandy Bergsten - Comments (0)
French fare. While it all looks so easy, tarts can be (pardon my French) a bit of a bitch to make. Most of you know I am not the best of bakers. On my mom’s recent visit she was shocked at the state of my petite fudge cakes. These diminutive desserts were riddled with caverns and caves. And if you know anything about my mom she isn’t shy about
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in the pink

perfecting the "done before they arrive" party- a work in progress
Categories: Soups, Dinner Party, Wine Line, Posted on August 7, 2012 by Sandy Bergsten - Comments (0)
Having a business associate over for a midweek dinner. Time to keep it light, fresh and fast. Summer suppers stir up images of chilled soup and garden-fresh greens. How about a flash from the past- chilled borscht coupled with airy crab cakes? Here is a beet soup that has stood the test of time. In fact it’s the very recipe I served at my wedding
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pinch me

perfecting the "done before they arrive" party- a work in progress
Categories: Soups, Fish and Seafood, Veggies and Sides, Dinner Party, Posted on August 2, 2012 by Sandy Bergsten - Comments (0)
With my parents in for the weekend I thought it would be fun to serve several small courses for dinner. I also wanted to wow them with a showstopper. In Dayton Foremost Seafood has the most incredible soft shell crabs. You need to call ahead to see if they’re available but when they are Foremost will clean the live crustaceans for you on the spot
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best laid plans

perfecting the "done before they arrive" party- a work in progress
Categories: Soups, Dinner Party, Posted on July 29, 2012 by Sandy Bergsten - Comments (0)
My folks arrive in minutes and of course I had a plan in place. Little did I know that Mother Nature had plans of her own. Yesterday at 3:32 PM after trying to outrun a monster thunderstorm I pulled into the garage when bang the lights went out just as the garage door shut. I carefully set down my bottles of Pouilly Fuisse and Bordeaux and felt for
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sliding into second

perfecting the "done before they arrive" party- a work in progress
Categories: Salads and Dressings, Soups, Fish and Seafood, Supper, Dinner Party, Posted on July 12, 2012 by Sandy Bergsten
Shrimp roll sliders, a downsized version of that northeastern summer staple- the lobster roll. A perfect accompaniment to chilled watercress soup. While top cut hotdog buns are “wicked good” they are almost impossible to find east of I-91. Simply sub bakery fresh slider buns and split them down the top. Continue inland and swap the lobster for
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beat the heat

perfecting the "done before they arrive" party- a work in progress
Categories: Salads and Dressings, Soups, Fish and Seafood, Dinner Party, Posted on July 8, 2012 by Sandy Bergsten - Comments (0)
With guests on their way in a day and the heat index expected to reach a staggering 115 degrees in Dayton, it’s time to come up with a refreshing and light menu. Chilled watercress soup is the perfect ticket to escape this oppressive heat. Made a day in advance then served up alongside shrimp roll sliders and a tomato and burrata salad. All will be
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