POSTS WITH TAG: entertaining

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    About eight years ago, right around the time our daughter was born, my husband and I instituted a "shoes off" policy in our home. It seemed pretty minor at the time. All we asked was that guests not track the mud, dirt, and mess from the outside world into the house where our baby spent so much time on the floor.

    With certain visitors, though, this was no simple feat (get it? hee). In fact, some -- I'm looking at you, Dad -- simply ignored the request and chose instead to traipse around the house, tracking all that mud, dirt, and everywhere. Thanks a lot!

    Apparently, we are not alone. Whether or not to ask guests to take off their shoes is, as it turns out, a controversial move. Many moms (here at CafeMom and elsewhere) think it's the height of rudeness to require your friends and family to go around in their socks or bare feet. It's not. What's rude is ignoring a house rule when you're the guest because YOU don't feel like untying your laces.

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    Football season is upon us, which means that our family is again on the hunt for the perfect wing recipe. We've tried them fried, seasoned, sweet and sour. You name it; we gave it a try in our test kitchen (which means I'm cooking and the kids are eating).

    But this recipe for peanut sesame chicken wings gave us something new -- a Thai-inspired flavor with a bit of a kick. They were a hit! Thank goodness, because our team lost last weekend. At least we had the wings. Here's how you make them.

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    I love parties. All kinds of parties. Backyard barbecues, birthday bashes, coffee clutches, potluck suppers, and cocktail parties. I love talking to new people and reconnecting with friends and family. And, of course, I love the great food.

    I throw a big holiday party every year and invite anywhere from 50 to 75 guests. I’ve done it for years and always follow the same pattern. I start out strong, making lots of lists and labeling platters and coordinating tableware. I cook in advance and freeze what I can, and two days before the party, I feel like I’ve got it all covered. And then I look around the living room and see the dust balls collecting in the corner and the dog hair on the couch and the streaks on the windows and I start freaking out ...

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    Easter is just around the corner, and Pinterest is brimming with fun kid-friendly potluck recipes to try. I couldn't resist the colorful spin on the traditional deviled eggs of these Jello flavored deviled eggs, and I quickly got to work!

    This could be a great after-school treat, a fun dessert, or even a great addition to our Easter brunch spread.

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    It's almost Easter! The family will be expecting at least two things. The first? A visit from the Easter bunny bearing all manner of tasty treats in baskets full of fake green grass. The second? That at least one afternoon will be spent doing this, the most hallowed of all Easter decorating projects: Dyeing Easter eggs

    Sure, you can always buy one of the decorating kits from your local grocery or drug store. Those will come out just fine. But if you want to spice up your routine and do something new with the kids, you've come to the right place. 

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    People get passionate about their Peeps. Nowadays you can buy Peeps for almost any holiday. But let's be real: Easter is when these brightly colored marshmallow treats shine the brightest, no? What makes them an all-around winner when it comes to celebrations is that you can do so much more with Peeps than just eat them. Of course, there are plenty of different ways you can eat Peeps, that goes without saying.

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    Oh Williams-Sonoma catalog, I want to live in you. In Williams-Sonoma Land, perfect meals are created with artisan condiments and organic vegetables purchased from the farmer's market. Lobsters are plentiful. And the pastries, my God, the pastries. They look like the food of gods. Did I mention there is never a mess in sight, despite all this ambitious cooking? Nothing but gleaming, $400 pots and pans, everywhere. Let's go visit, shall we?

    Tell us, has your culinary life ever achieved such splendor?


    Image via Williams-Sonoma

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    Apple pie is great, but if you're looking for a slightly different all-American dessert that has a bit of bite and kick to it, you can't beat Key Lime Pie. There's something cool and refreshing about this delicious dessert, which is unbelievably simple to make and consists of so few ingredients, you won't even feel like you're baking. This is a treat for cooks who don't want to slave over a hot oven, but can appreciate a fluffy, creamy, tangy, and sweet treat that takes just 20 minutes to whip up.

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    The following is a post from our sponsor, SavingStar.

    I’m a party girl. Always have been. Always will be.

    And once I grew up and got a house of my own, I vowed to have a big party every year. Sometimes it’s a holiday party, sometimes it’s a birthday party, sometimes it’s a backyard barbecue. And sometimes, when I’m feeling really industrious, I’ll have all three.

    But parties can be your own worst enemy, financially.

    If you’re anything like me, you still have that frat party mentality -- the more, the merrier. I start by inviting 40 of our closest friends, then add the peripheral 20, then another 10, then 5 or 6 more that I barely even know. Just in case. After all, there’s nothing worse than throwing a party when no one comes.

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    The Super Bowl is fast upon us, and football and food fans alike have a lot to be getting excited about. I, for one, have been standing in front of my fridge wearing a helmet and screaming at its contents in a bid to inspire the foods therein to greatness. So far, it doesn’t look good. Because, you know, they are inanimate objects. No real surprise there, I guess.

    We’ve all got our favorites when it comes to game day food traditions. There’s chili, there’s nachoschips, not to mention a plethora of beers and cheeses. I had to stop writing for a second because I got way too hungry even listing options. Still, my true passion has always been dips. Just ask my boyfriend (jk, I’m single and unloved).

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