Top positive review
46 people found this helpful
Inspired, approachable entertaining
on August 2, 2007
I've been daunted by throwing parties for years, always embaressed to be whirling like a dirvish in my kitchen an hour after my intended start time, so caught up in food-making that I miss out on my own soiree.
BUT THIS BOOK ROCKS--
to me, the most invaluble part is the suggested menus for themed culinary soirees. The author breaks down what can be prepared days, hours, minutes in advance which meant that, despite having a full work week and only an hour to prepare, I was able to throw together an impressive spread. while the gorgeous photographs make the appetizers look daunting, everything I prepared was simple enough, especially since I was doing it over the course of a handful of days and had time to clean up. And it was so good!
my complaints: the authors don't always explain what's what so well. so, while I was intrigued by the carrot escuchebe suggested as part of a fiesta themed menu, I had no idea what it was to be served with. also, some of the ingredients are difficult to obtain, although reasonable substitutions are suggested.
it's a nice book to use as a launch pad--you can guess where your own cheats can be (a good store-bought salsa or guacamole, for instance). and it sure makes a pretty coffee table book.
I highly recommend this for anyone who aspires to take entertaining to another level, but isn't quite ready to take on Martha Stewart.