chilly turn of events

perfecting the "done before they arrive" party- a work in progress
Categories: Appetizers, Cocktail Party, Dinner Party, Posted on October 11, 2021 by Sandy Bergsten - Comments (2)
The upside to having our refrigerator go on the fritz was that a new and improved one took its place. The previous was a stainless counter depth model. The outside was sleek and streamlined, inside it was beyond shallow, the freezer almost nonexistent. You could barely squeeze a plastic container of greens into one of the two miniscule drawers.
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smoke signal

food detective
Categories: Beverages, Eating Out, Posted on September 27, 2021 by Sandy Bergsten - Comments (0)
When I find myself alone one of my favorite things to do is visit a local haunt and indulge in an app and a cocktail. Nothing beats Fish Bar in my Lakeview Chicago neighborhood. Biting into their lobster rolls or crispy cod sandwiches you’ll feel as though you are on the coast of Maine. And a plate of their East or West Coast oysters coupled with a
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end on a high note

perfecting the "done before they arrive" party- a work in progress
Categories: Desserts, Dinner Party, Fête Fact, Posted on September 13, 2021 by Sandy Bergsten - Comments (1)
I take joy in setting a beautiful table. I love my bone china, sterling and crystal. Creating a place for my guests to sit infused with grace is a simple pleasure.  Many keep their finest tucked away and out of reach. I believe our beautiful things are there to be enjoyed. And with the exception of my silver, I put almost all of it in the
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in no time flat

perfecting the "done before they arrive" party- a work in progress
Categories: Grains and Pasta, Dinner for Two, Supper, Dinner Party, Posted on August 30, 2021 by Sandy Bergsten - Comments (2)
I love the vibe of Sunday supper. Dinner on the last day of the week tends to be casually welcoming and comforting. A little like that black sundress you can dress up or down. I’ve been meaning to have a few of our neighbors over and I wanted it to be an easy but memorable affair.  I had the idea to whip up some flatbread pizzas for the main and
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wok on by

food detective
Categories: Poultry, Dinner for Two, Supper, Posted on August 16, 2021 by Sandy Bergsten
You know those days, weeks, when you’re wondering where you’ll find the time or energy to make dinner? On those nights I sometimes order online. I don’t know about you, but for me those meals often fall flat. And at the end of a pretty mediocre meal, I usually feel a little fat. Not a win win. The other day when I didn’t want to do what I suppose
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something borrowed… something bleu

a moment in time
Categories: Salads and Dressings, Dinner for Two, Supper, Lunch, Eating Out, Posted on August 1, 2021 by Sandy Bergsten
Wedding bells were ringing last week in Midway Utah. After a year of plans and pivots, my baby girl married her perfect match in the midst of the Wasatch Mountains. It was exceptional in each and every way. Most notably that our family and a handful of dear friends, all fully vaccinated, could reunite for this incredibly blessed event. 
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better than take out

food detective
Categories: Grains and Pasta, Dinner for Two, Supper, Posted on July 20, 2021 by Sandy Bergsten
This past week I’ve been feeling very nostalgic. It’s had me reflecting on the onset of my adult life and the milestones that followed. In the mid-eighties and early nineties, I lived way up on the Upper West Side of NYC. The cold sesame noodles from our corner Chinese were one of my guilty pleasures. I don’t know how they packed so much flavor and
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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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picking sides

perfecting the "done before they arrive" party- a work in progress
Categories: Salads and Dressings, Grains and Pasta, Veggies and Sides, Dinner for Two, Supper, Dinner Party, Posted on June 20, 2021 by Sandy Bergsten
This Fourth of July we are staying in the city. Thought it might be fun to invite some friends over to celebrate our country’s independence and relish in our now chilly dining room courtesy of our newly installed AC unit. Just because you are an apartment dweller doesn’t mean you can’t have an indoor barbeque. The key is figuring out what to
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seize the season

food detective
Categories: Fish and Seafood, Dinner for Two, Supper, Dinner Party, Posted on June 5, 2021 by Sandy Bergsten
When I returned to Chicago, I was delighted to discover that the second-floor markets at Eataly had reopened. What a treat to once again see the cases filled with aged beef, homemade pastas, a world of cheeses and charcutier, the freshest of fish. I felt like a little kid window shopping at Christmas. It was liberating to do something that felt
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