Apr 22, 2009

The Book: Tips & Tricks

Time and Money Saving Tips & Tricks for The Single Gal 
(or anybody else for that matter)

Make a List
If you’re not used to putting on a party for lots of people making a list for everything from what to pick up at the grocery store to what to do in the final countdown hours until your guests arrive.

5:00 – Chill wine & beer
5:15 – Preheat Oven, Set Table
5:30 – Shower, get dressed and have a glass of wine
6:00 – Toss Salad, Put appetizer in oven

Reviewing your list can help ease anxieties about getting everything done and ensure you’re prepared to have a good time when your guests arrive rather than running around like a crazy woman.

Limit Liquor Choices
Don’t offer a full bar unless you already have the liquor on hand or want to stock up because you know you’ll use it. Create a signature cocktail for the party and buy the single liquor in bulk or stick to wine and/or beer.

Butcher the Meat
Use a less expensive cut of meat to get the same effect with less cost and waste. Instead of serving a full steak to everyone, use sliced flank steak and bulk it up with other ingredients (see the Thai Beef Salad recipe here).

Think Farm Fresh
Find a good farmer’s market or produce stand close to your home. The fruits and vegetables are generally better tasting and much cheaper than in stores.

Combine Creatively
Don’t spend all day baking desserts from scratch. Buy a plain layer cake from the grocery store or bakery and decorate it yourself with fresh flowers, candies or fruit slices.

Order a plain cheese pizza from your local delivery place. After it arrives add your own interesting toppings, sprinkle a little more cheese on top and pop it back in the oven to heat everything up.

Water it Down
Stretch your alcohol budget by cutting wine with fruit juice or club soda to make sangria and spritzers and get more drinks per bottle.

Enlist Help
Your guests will be bored if they’re just standing around and watching you cook for them, so put them to work! Make your to-do list a little shorter by designating easy jobs like setting the table, dressing the salad or opening the wine.

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