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Happy Holidays from the Diva of Do-Ahead: A Year of Feasts to Celebrate With Family And Friends Paperback – September 15, 2006

4.5 out of 5 stars 29 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

The self-proclaimed Diva of Do-Ahead says she is "the coach to help you get the dinner prepared ahead of time so you can enjoy your family and friends." Her point: what fun is a party when the harried host is stuck in the kitchen? The thorough and engaging Diva comes through, offering creative ideas for invitations, tips for deciding how much food to make and recommendations for equipment and tools. Her 12 party plans span the year, from New Year's Eve through Passover to Christmas. Do-ahead countdowns have specifics for planning ahead (from six months down to five minutes before an event). Classic recipes include Grilled Lemon Chicken Breast; innovative ones include Roasted Tomato and Pesto Cheesecake with Polenta Crust, and Creamy Corn Bisque with French Chives and Heart-Shaped Crostini. Highlights come from the Thanksgiving and Christmas classes she's taught for 15 years, including an impressive strategy for the perfect roast turkey. The book's clear language and devotion to detail make it appropriate for novices and accomplished cooks alike. (Oct.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Diane Phillips has been teaching her easy, elegant, do-ahead approach to parties and holiday get-togethers at cooking schools around the country for more than 15 years. She is a spokesperson for Lipton Recipe Secrets and the author of several cookbooks, including Perfect Party Food, The Ultimate Rotisserie Cookbook, and The Soup Mix Gourmet. She is also the author of The Perfect Basket: How to Make a Fabulous Gift Basket for Any Occasion.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Harvard Common Press (September 15, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 155832321X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1558323216
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 0.9 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (29 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #879,973 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I hope Dianne is enjoying her yacht on the Riveria. This book was so fabulous that I bought it for at least twenty friends and family. The book is extremely reliable, easy and very inspiring. You feel as though you are getting one on one cooking coaching. It makes cooking non intimidating and fun. I used this as my holiday "bible" and sailed through with rave reviews. The book allowed me to pace myself so that I wasn't wiped at the end that being the goal and beauty of this book. I would highly recommend this for an experienced chef as well as a novice. Great job Dianne. Many Thanks!!!! This will be a party classic for years and years.
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Format: Paperback
I made the entire Thanksgiving feast in this cookbook ahead. I decided to follow the directions in this book, and a month before Thanksgiving, I spent about 5 nights preparing dishes. It was fun, and let me tell you, it was the best Thanksgiving feast imaginable. No one knew it was all made ahead.

Now, mind you, I am noted for my cooking. I was just in a crunch for time this year, and decided to do it this way. Believe me when I say, this is the way it will be done every year from now on.

Since Thanksgiving, I have made many of the recipes in this book. I have not been disappointed with one single recipe. I have raved about this book so much to my friends, that I have since begun giving this cookbook as a gift.

If you are interested in enjoying your parties, too, then I suggest you get this book and try the tips and the recipes.
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Format: Paperback
Diane Phillips' Happy Holidays cookbook has become one of my favorites (and I have a collection of about 200 cookbooks). I love to cook for friends and family, but also like to be able to spend time visiting with them. I've tried three of Diane's complete meals (appetizers through desserts) and have not only found every recipe to be delicious and attractive, but was able to do the majority of preparation well ahead of time. Although I'm retired, it's great for working folks also because you can do a dish every couple of evenings, freeze or refrigerate them, depending on the dish, and just add the last minute touches on the day of your dinner. I've gotten rave reviews on each of her 'feasts' and look forward to cooking more of them.
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Format: Paperback
In "Happy Holidays From The Diva Of Do-Ahead: A Year Of Feasts To Celebrate With Family And Friends", author, chef, and caterer, Diane Phillips draws upon her more than twenty years of professional experience and expertise to compile a compendium of recipes and ideas for twelve full holiday menus for superbly prepared gourmet meals. Each individual meal menu is broken down into step-by-step preparations that can be easily accomplished in manageable stages days, weeks, and even a month or more ahead of time - all without sacrificing quality in appearance, nutrition or taste! For each menu "Happy Holidays From The Diva Of Do-Ahead" provides the kitchen cook with a helpful countdown, a list of items to have on hand, instructions on economically finding what is needed, as well as 'Diva Tips' on substitutions, decorating and presentation. From a New Year's Eve Party and a Morning-After Brunch, to Memorial Day Picnic, to a Halloween party for All Ages, "Happy Holidays From The Diva Of Do-Ahead" is a unique, 'user friendly', and welcome addition to any family or community library cookbook collection!
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Format: Hardcover
As the busy holiday season approaches, so does lots of cooking and baking. This book is full of easy, tasty and impressive dishes that can be made ahead, or mostly ahead. This is a great way to approach Holiday cooking! Whether you're making an entire meal or a pot-luck contribution, you'll find something wonderful here.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This and its sister book Perfect Party Foods by Diane Phillips are the best cookbooks in my collect. I have well over 100 current cookbooks that I use. Without a doubt I use this and the the sister book more than all of the others combined. Who wouldn't want to make a recipe that can be done in advance?
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Not exactly what I'd expected; have not tried the recipes but am sure a few will be worthwhile. Seems the author had lots of holidays in mind, not just Thanksgiving and Christmas, and more than things to serve when people just stop by momentarily as they do at that time of year.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I'm an experienced cook but I bought this book for assistance in learning how to do more of my cooking in advance of a party, etc. Philips more than delivers on her promises, offering thoughtful, delicious menus with recipes that don't cut the corners on flavor or excellence. Most of the recipes can be adapted by an experienced cook to your own favorite recipes. I found it invaluable to learn what can and can't be done in advance, definitely making entertaining easier and more enjoyable.
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