gem of a weekend

food detective
Categories: Appetizers, Salads and Dressings, Veggies and Sides, Supper, Dinner Party, Sources, Eating Out, Fête Fact, Posted on November 18, 2019 by Sandy Bergsten - Comments (0)
Two weeks ago, the stars aligned, and my college roommates and I finally got together for the first time in over seven years. Upon seeing each other it was if the last thirty-eight years literally melted away. What a tonic for each of our souls. We laughed, we reminisced, we held one another, and of course we ate (disclaimer: there was also a litt
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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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hot summer daze

perfecting the "done before they arrive" party- a work in progress
Categories: Appetizers, Salads and Dressings, Soups, Fish and Seafood, Veggies and Sides, Dinner Party, Sources, Fête Fact, Posted on July 22, 2019 by Sandy Bergsten
Baby it’s hot outside.  Our prewar apartment on Lake Michigan has so much charm, but no central air or personal outdoor space. We do have a few strategically placed portable air conditioner units, but with endless days in the in high 90’s it’s a little warm inside. So, what’s a girl to do when she planned a party a month ago? Time to put her menu
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a tale of two tables

entertaining with style- making it work for you
Categories: Fish and Seafood, Grains and Pasta, Veggies and Sides, Dinner Party, Fête Fact, Posted on May 14, 2019 by Sandy Bergsten
Well we moved. Twice.  As I navigate the sea of boxes, I will say there is a certain excitement in unwrapping the boxes and seeing my treasures. I’m going to give myself a little credit, I did a good job of packing up which in turn has made unpacking almost fun. The tricky part was dismantling an old renovated farm house and divvying up our
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head of its class

food detective
Categories: Veggies and Sides, Dinner for Two, Supper, Dinner Party, Posted on April 1, 2019 by Sandy Bergsten
One of the many perks of southern California is that the farmers markets run almost all year. Wednesday morning I wake up and head down the hill to the one in Palm Desert. There I pick up a bag of some of the best avocados in the world, a jug of just picked-just squeezed orange juice, an armful of wild flowers, and whatever vegetables catch my
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smashed

perfecting the "done before they arrive" party- a work in progress
Categories: Veggies and Sides, Dinner for Two, Supper, Dinner Party, Posted on February 4, 2019 by Sandy Bergsten - Comments (1)
Hats off to all of my friends who imbibed the hype and embraced “dry January” or went on one of those ten to (gasp) thirty-day cleanses. Suffice it to say that I did not do any of those things. I did however work diligently on trying to incorporate more cardio into my weekly routine and really tried to slash my portions in half. Next November at my
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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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ear today…

food detective
Categories: Veggies and Sides, Supper, Dinner Party, Sources, Posted on August 5, 2018 by Sandy Bergsten
Summertime in southern Ohio it’s easy to believe that sweet corn will always be around. But as the dog days of summer come to a close, so will corn’s window. It’s always a sad moment when I drive by the farm stand on Stroop Road and their wooden cart is bare. Because once the corn is gone, it’s gone for good. But while it’s still here, I am
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you say tomato…

food detective
Categories: Salads and Dressings, Veggies and Sides, Dinner for Two, Supper, Dinner Party, Lunch, Sources, Posted on August 21, 2017 by Sandy Bergsten
One of the best things about living in Ohio in August is the abundance of freshly picked tomatoes. You can actually smell their sweet ripeness from afar. These beauties need little adornment… a pinch of salt, a grind of pepper, a splash of good olive oil and perhaps a drizzle of fine balsamic. This simple tomato salad really doesn’t need a
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summer’s bounty

perfecting the "done before they arrive" party- a work in progress
Categories: Soups, Meat, Veggies and Sides, Desserts, Dinner Party, Posted on July 25, 2017 by Sandy Bergsten
My last cooking class at Dorothy Lane Marker’s Culinary Center was so much fun. We had a great group, plenty of farm fresh ingredients, and a lineup of recipes that could be done almost entirely ahead of time. Let’s face it- if you’re going to have people over you want to be out with your guests, not stuck in the kitchen. The theme was
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