Serious Entertaining

Seasonal menu planning for the perfect dinner party.

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A Traditional Thanksgiving Menu to Feed a Crowd

Thanksgiving in my family isn't exactly predictable, but there's one thing that's guaranteed, no matter where I am or who I'm with: there will be turkey, there will be stuffing, there will be cranberry sauce, gravy, potatoes, and pie. These aren't really dishes we eat year-round (or, in my case, on virtually any day other than Thanksgiving), so striking that balance of familiar and delicious is paramount. Here's how to do it right. More

Serious Entertaining: A 'Game of Thrones' Feast Fit for Kings

After a long, bitter winter (Wall-style, minus Hodor for company), the Game of Thrones season premiere is finally upon us (Sunday at 9 p.m. EST on HBO). And there will be blood! (Probably.) Before taking the deep dive back into Westeros, you must have strength. And that means fortifying yourself with a Throne-themed meal that's...dare we say...fit for a king? More

Serious Entertaining: Ramps Ramps Ramps Ramps Ramps

Some people simply don't like ramps. I understand perfectly. Some people also don't like unicorns and rainbows and puppies or Mr. Wizard or telescopes or Calvin and Hobbes or holding hands or Super Mario or hugs or The Beatles or any of the other wonderful things that can make life worth living. Don't like ramps? That's your prerogative. For the rest of us, ramp season is a cause for celebration. More

Serious Entertaining: A Bavarian-Style Alpine Feast

On a family ski trip a few years back, my father and I wound up dining at a certain unnamed restaurant in Taos, New Mexico, where the overarching theme was lederhosen, braided pigtails, lots of logs, and steins und steins of beer. Snowed into my apartment in New York City, I've taken to reminiscing about the quaint atmosphere, charming in its unabashed artificiality—the folk music and ye olde German fonts, the tiled wood-burning stove, and, most importantly, the hearty Bavarian fare. Here's how to bring some of that flavor home. More

Serious Entertaining: A Chinese New Year Feast

I love a good food-centric holiday, so while I'm not Chinese, Vietnamese, or Korean you can bet I'll be cooking up a storm when the Lunar New Year rolls around next Friday, January 31. And if you or your family are from one of those countries, chances are you, too, will be gathering with friends and relatives to feast and spread goodwill for the year to come. We've pulled together some of our favorite symbolic dishes commonly enjoyed during the Chinese New Year. More

Serious Entertaining: Game Day Finger Food

When throwing a game day party (Super Bowl or otherwise), it's important to keep things portable. Your guests will likely be sitting on the couch—this is the time to think finger foods, not elaborate platings, and we've got more than enough to keep everyone entertained from kickoff to finish. Also, in our book, any excuse to eat with your hands is a good one. More

Serious Entertaining: A New Year's Eve Cocktail Party

For those of us hosting a party this New Year's Eve, the pressure is on. After all, you, and you alone, bear the responsibility for each person's final sips and bites of the year, not to mention their very first of 2014. Luckily, we've got you covered, with cocktails, sparkling wines, hors d'oeuvres, and dips, snacks, and sweets galore to keep your guests in quality food and drink on both sides of the midnight hour. More

A Travel-Friendly Thanksgiving

Since leaving the, shall we say, "cozy," confines of my parents' home, I've learned that not everybody has a kitchen with such "personality" (and, of course, some people have it much, much worse). Which is why potluck-style Thanksgiving etiquette can be exceedingly hard to lock down and deciding what to bring to somebody else's home can prove anxiety-inducing for guests and hosts alike. To make things a little easier, we've split some of our favorite travel-friendly Thanksgiving sides into easy-to-manage categories, from ready-to-eat to easy on-site preparations. More

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