pre-reception

entertaining with style- making it work for you
Categories: Appetizers, Cocktail Party, Fête Fact, Posted on June 24, 2019 by Sandy Bergsten - Comments (0)
How fun that my daughter and her husband were going to be in town for a wedding the weekend of their first anniversary. Turns out the ceremony they were coming in for was uptown at three and the reception downtown at six, leaving a bit of a gap.  Lucky me that our new apartment happens to lie right in between. So my daughter and I decided to have
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first fête

entertaining with style- making it work for you
Categories: Appetizers, Desserts, Cocktail Party, Breakfast/Brunch, Setting the Stage, Fête Fact, Posted on June 9, 2019 by Sandy Bergsten - Comments (0)
So excited for my first Chicago party. My youngest, who is in business school at Northwestern, wanted to invite some of her classmates over to meet me and see the apartment before they took off for their summer internships. With my husband and I driving back across the country the week before, time was going to be too tight to pull off a proper
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wheelhouse

entertaining with style- making it work for you
Categories: Appetizers, Cocktail Party, Fête Fact, Posted on May 23, 2019 by Sandy Bergsten - Comments (2)
In my last post I mentioned how important it is to have a handful of go-to recipes that always work for you. With those up your sleeve you will never shy away from having people over. So many times people think they need to cook up something new or extravagant when they entertain. The truth is when you have a party it’s the guest list that most
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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 - Comments (2)
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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goodbye old friend

entertaining with style- making it work for you
Categories: Fish and Seafood, Poultry, Meat, Dinner for Two, Supper, Dinner Party, Sources, Posted on April 25, 2019 by Sandy Bergsten
You know how you sometimes take some of the best things for granted? They always seem to be there, so you assume they always will. The other day I had a panic attack as I realized I had just signed a lease for an apartment on Lake Shore Drive in Chicago. Overlooking Belmont Harbor, it has views of Lake Michigan but no personal outdoor space.
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turning the page

entertaining with style- making it work for you
Categories: Fête Fact, Posted on April 13, 2019 by Sandy Bergsten
How many of you know that poignant feeling that rises up when you finish a really, really good book? I almost cried when I put down “Where the Crawdads Sing”. Tears did roll down my cheeks as I closed “Bel Canto” and “The Art of Hearing Heartbeats”. One of my greatest pleasures is reading a truly well written, beautifully crafted work of fiction.
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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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ode to my uncle

food detective
Categories: Meat, Dinner for Two, Supper, Lunch, Posted on March 17, 2019 by Sandy Bergsten
There's something about Scandinavian men of a certain generation, just with their presence they seem to make those around them feel safe and reassured. My uncle, a stoic man with a slight smile and radiant twinkle in his eye, always made me feel as though he truly saw me. As the youngest in my family by years, I adored spending time with my
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m is for memories

food detective
Categories: Appetizers, Breads, Pizza, Tarts, Dinner for Two, Supper, Lunch, Eating Out, Posted on March 5, 2019 by Sandy Bergsten
Last month I traveled to Omaha for my aunt’s services. It was a bittersweet occasion, for she died quite unexpectedly right after my dear uncle’s passing. The services were held on what would have been their 62nd wedding anniversary.  My cousins all did such a wonderful job of crafting a weekend that truly celebrated my aunt’s life and her love
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ham it up

food detective
Categories: Appetizers, Salads and Dressings, Meat, Cocktail Party, Lunch, Posted on February 17, 2019 by Sandy Bergsten
Happy Chinese New Year- it’s the year of the pig! What perfect timing that I stumbled upon the following recipe. One of my personal new year’s resolutions is to finally go through all my old cooking magazines that have literally been piling up for decades. And while I’ve been feeling some Marie Kondo pressure to simply pitch them all, I’m glad I
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