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DAZZLING   DINNERS:  Recipes, Decor and More

You are inviting people to dinner. You want them to adore the food, have great conversation and lots of fun. You want to excite their minds as well as their palates. After they leave, you want them to rave about the party to everyone they know. You need a dazzling dinner.

Dazzling dinner are not necessarily formal or elegant, and they certainly are not conventional.  Dazzling dinners are distinctive and exceptional. They have themes that capture the imagination and are played out in delightful decor and fabulous food. Dazzling dinners are fun to think about, fun to carry out, and great fun for your guests. If you like food, or entertaining, or stepping out of the box, you will adore doing a dazzling dinner. It will be entertainment for your guests and recreation for you.  Twelve chapters set out the Dazzling Dinner Plans, one inspired by each month of the year. Everything you need to know and do for a super-special evening is detailed in each Plan.

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DESSERT

German Chocolate Torte

"An Academy Award Dinner"

ENTREE

"A Fat Tuesday Celebration Dinner"

SALAD
Seahorse Salad

"Seafood and Citrus Dinner"

JULY

A COOL MENU FOR A HOT SUMMER

Inspiration:  Mid-summer, July’s heat

Here is relief from the heat with fun foods in shapes symbolic of winter along with a frosty décor. Cool!

COOK’S INTRODUCTION

It has been a very hot summer. Everyone is sticky, grumpy and entirely weary of the sizzling heat. It’s time for a dinner party with a winter theme that will chill everyone out.  
 

Imagine their surprise! The evening is hot and humid. You greet your guests at the door with a foam snowman at your side. The air smells of pine and is notably cool. It looks like winter.  Artificial snow lines the windows and a pair of skis leans against one wall. On the coffee table is an eye-catching scene that calms and cools, a miniature snow-capped mountain on an expanse of grass. A set of snowmen and a pile of snowballs are also in view.  

 

The snow-capped mountain, snowmen and snowballs are appetizers. Like all the dishes in the menu, these are sculpted in wintry forms, designed for intrigue and fun and to be cool and cooling. Wintry scenes are featured. Besides the snow-capped mountain, the “iceberg” soup looks amazingly like icebergs floating on a cold sea, while the entrée depicts a winter landscape.
 

The tastes are just as carefully crafted to intrigue and charm. They are cool and refreshing or spicy and zesty. By design, the principle ingredients are fairly common, because the novelty of each dish’s appearance calls for a balance with the familiar. However, your guests will savor the flavors. There is enough complexity in each dish to satisfy the tongues and minds of all the foodies at your table.

 

Set a wintry decor and don’t hesitate to be inventive, whimsical and witty. The occasion calls for fun.

 

CHILL OUT!

 

Appropriate for: Any summer day.

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MENU

Cocktail
Ice Cold Lemonade (Spiked with Rum)

 

Appetizers
Snow-Capped Mountain (Pureed Lentils with Orange and Spices)
Snowman (Scallop Ceviche)
Snowballs (Teleggio Cheese with Prosciutto and Fig)

 

Soup
Iceberg Soup (Thai-Style with Chicken and Coconut)

 

Entree
Yule Logs on Bed of Snow with Evergreen Branches 
(Grilled, Dry-Aged Strip Steaks)
(Rosemary-Scented Mashed Potatoes)
(Broccoli Rabe with Lemon Salt)

 

Salad
Iceberg Salad (Iceberg Lettuce with Blue Cheese Dressing)

 

Desserts
Christmas Tree (Pistachio Cake with White Chocolate/Mint Ganache)
Ornaments for Your Tree (Melon Balls in Melon Liqueur)

A COOL MENU FOR A HOT SUMMER

It’s been a very hot summer.  

This wintry menu will chill you out.