How do you get the timing right?
Tanya Steel is a well-known food writer and Editor-in-Chief of the award-winning food Web site, Epicurious.com. Before joining Epicurious, Steel was the New York Editor of Bon Appetit magazine, where she wrote columns and features. Ms. Steel won the prestigious James Beard Foundation Journalism Award for Magazine Restaurant Review or Critique, 2003. She is a member of the American Society of Magazine Editors and a James Beard Restaurant Judge. Prior to Bon Appétit, she was an editor at Diversion, Food & Wine, and Mademoiselle magazines. In recent years, Steel created the charity program Wine. Dine. Donate. to combat hunger in conjunction with America's Second Harvest. Steel is the co-author of Real Food for Healthy Kids, which was published in late 2008.
Tanya Steel: I think timing for entertaining is kind of key, and that really is what makes or breaks people’s parties. Because a frazzled host is not someone that you wanna be with or you wanna be. So organization is key. I’m just a huge proponent of organization in my life. I’ve had to be, and it really does work. So if you are gonna have a big dinner party, the night before I would set the table. I would definitely have figured out what you could make that day or days beforehand. You should have, you know, the wines chilling and anything that you can make a day ahead made ahead – sauces, breads, cakes, that kind of thing. And then that morning, the morning of the party, I would just finish whatever it is that you need to do in terms of baking, and cooking, and roasting. And you know grilling is a great way to entertain. In fact that’s a kind of casual, relaxed way to entertain. It’s delicious. People love it. It’s a way that’s very social. Men love to grill. In fact every man I meet I always tell him what a fantastic griller he is and a great pit master he is, and so they get a real kick out of it. And so that’s a . . . another great thing to do when you’re entertaining, is to have grilled foods and build the party around the barbecue.
Timing can make or break a party, says Steel.
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