Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Reduce Your Dinner Costs - Paint Your Table And Eliminate Those Non-Essentials

I enjoyed this article by Brittny Goodsell Jones.. Shari Wells was shocked one day when she the total of someone's party had come to $600 so she has just published a cookbook about how to entertain while eliminating non-essential items.

"Eliminating non-essentials means the cook has more attention given to presentation. The best way to make a low-budget meal look fancy is to “paint the table,” she says. For example, using colorful, ironed tablecloths helps the table look fuller and more sophisticated. Wells also suggests rotating napkin colors, and to mix and match with tablecloths for a different look.

Intense colors help show off a table more dramatically. Wells came up with this idea of making the table “pop” after visiting a Van Gogh exhibit in California."

It's amazing how aesthetics can be so pleasing to the eye that they really can make a difference to the success of your dinner party - regardless of the cost of the menu items.

I have always loved the way the Japanese pay so much attention to the presentation of their food.. It makes eating a real joy..

The Herald Journal Serving Logan and Cache Valley > News > Please Be Seated
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Friday, February 20, 2009

The Worst Dinner Party Experiences

Imagine going to a dinner party and being asked to chip in for the costs once the meal was done?

Or your host knowing your a vegetarian and taking delight in telling you you have just eaten some meat? Or this poor woman:

"I had dinner with my in-laws for the first time (first time we met, too), and when they were setting the table up and passing out plates they served me last. Then, they hardly spoke the whole time, didn't ask me anything about myself, and only gave short answers to any questions I asked. It was probably the most horrible, awkward night of my life."

These are just some of the bad experiences people have had ..

Let's Dish: What's the Worst Party Foul You've Witnessed? | Party Foul, Hostess Etiquette, let's dish | YumSugar - Recipes, Menus, Food & Wine

To your successful dinner parties!

The Hostess with the Mostess
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Thursday, February 19, 2009

Oscars Dinner Party Idea

This event proves a fabulous opportunity to catch up with friends over dinner and then watch this not-to-be-missed annual event.

A night of glitz and glamor - maybe you could all dress to suit the occasion?

Start the night by allowing guests to  make their vote - who will win?

A great article by Kristy X-Y follows:

A snippet of an article by Kristy X-Y follows about how her Oscar party turned into an all-day affair and how it became an even for the whole family!:

"There is always so much hype over the clothes worn and people that attend, the Movies themselves get less press! That is what got us to start our Academy Awards: and the Oscar went to... all day bash many years ago.

What is the Academy Awards, and the Oscar went to... all day bash? Well, basically it is an all day Oscar winning movie marathon with a lot of food, fun and drinks thrown in. Now in college, there was a lot more drinks involved than after we started having kids and it morphed into a family event! It really is a lot of fun for everyone."

Seattle Parenting Examiner: Hold an Academy Awards: and the Oscar went to... all day party bash
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Sunday, February 15, 2009

Dinner party supports the fight against MS - The Mississauga News -

Please support this global dinner party like Paula Tzouanakis who is throwing a party with a purpose at the Mississauga Grand Banquet Hall & Convention Centre in support of research to end multiple sclerosis on February 26.

Hey, my blog even appears here and can help with those ideas.

Since 2003, the dinner parties have raised more than $250,000 for research. Parties are typically hosted on the last Saturday of February.

Dinner party supports the fight against MS - The Mississauga News -

The Hostess with the Mostess
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Friday, February 13, 2009

Sweet and sassy: A dinner party for the last days of winter

I like this woman - Emma Christensen - she says:

"Back in January when the year was still shiny and new, I made a resolution. Forget dieting. Forget jogging three mornings a week. This year, I was going to master the dinner party".

Emma continues:

"I’ve decided that the key to overcoming my dinner party anxieties is three-fold. First, I need to relax. After all, these are friends. Second, I need to plan dishes that are easily made ahead and don’t rely on precise timing. Third, I need a theme."

And themes are what you can find right here!
"A mid-winter menu foll o sass and sweetness starts with a honey citrus salad. The entree follows suite with short ribs braised in honey-cinnamon and served with polenta. The perfect end to this satisfying meal is coffee with miniature chocolate-dipped snikerdoodles."

Sounds good to me - even though I am in Australia and we are heading toward the end of Summer.. nevertheless, I recommend checking out Emma's article - I always love it when the recipes are included! • Sweet and sassy: A dinner party for the last days of winter

The Hostess with the Mostess
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Tuesday, February 10, 2009

The Dinner Party Is Back

If you are a regular to my blog, you will have seen a number of articles about this very topic. People are being creative and still enjoying the company of their friends over dinner..

"Heard the one about the couple that paid £40,000 for a new kitchen in 2005 and have only just started using it? It is not a joke. The days are dwindling when tables for six in well-reviewed restaurants were full every night. Dining at home is back. Sales of dinner party food are outperforming 2008 figures by more than 100 per cent; supermarkets are seeing wine sales rocket by as much as 200 per cent. But the re-born dinner party is a rather different affair to the classic image of a dining room table laid with polished silver. Eat out in someone else's home, post credit crunch, and you are more likely to be served supper in the kitchen, dining on a casserole with good red wine bought at a third of restaurant prices."

Read the whole artilce by Rose Prince here:
Return of the dinner party - Telegraph

Stay tuned for more dinner party ideas soon..

The Hostess with the Mostess
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Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Have You Organized Your Valentine's Day Dinner Party?

This article by Jan Burgess inspired me - see what you think..

"February, a month of hearts and flowers, brings Valentine's Day.

Red hearts can be part of your decorations, the shape of frosted cookies or the icing on a red-velvet cake. Flowers are for the special woman in your life, as well as beautiful in a centerpiece.It can be a time for romance or remembering.

It is a time when kids buy valentines for their classmates and hope for one in return from that special friend. It is a month when we are reminded of the importance of love.

It is also a time to have fun in the kitchen. Of course, there are the obvious ways we all know about. Restaurants have dinners by candlelight. Cookbooks are replete with fancy recipes of tasty things representing Valentine's Day, and stores carry everything from boxes of chocolates to those little candy hearts with messages of the season inscribed in tiny red letters."

Read the rest here: :: Northwest Arkansas' News Source
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