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Gretchen McKay/Pittsburgh Post-Gazette/TNS

Gretchen's table: Lemon-ricotta pancakes

Entertainment / Entertaining /

Sweet treats, such as the Polish doughnuts paczki, New Orleans-style beignets and Mardi Gras king cake, tend to draw most of the attention on Fat Tuesday, celebrated on the day before Ash Wednesday. It's a last chance to indulge before the fasting days of Lent, and if you're going to live it up with something full of fat and sugar, you might as ...Read more

Whole Foods Market/Whole Foods Market/TNS

Super healthy and delish dip for the Super Bowl

Entertainment / Entertaining /

Here's a tasty alternative to pork rinds and queso for your game-watching feast.

With the Super Bowl and parties nearly here, we certainly hope you're thinking more about watching the game than how many calories you'll be consuming.

But calorie-watcher or not, this Mediterranean Dip from Whole Foods Market sounds pretty darn luscious. Sure, ...Read more

Gretchen McKay/Pittsburgh Post-Gazette/TNS

3 easy sides to complement your Super Bowl chili

Entertainment / Entertaining /

When it comes to Super Bowl parties, perhaps nothing pleases football fans more than a big pot of chili, especially if you're the one who's hosting.

However you concoct it, you're sure to score extra points if you trade the accompanying bowl of saltines or oyster crackers for some sides that are a bit more inspired. It's the Super Bowl, guys. ...Read more

Dreamstime/TNS

Substitution time: 7 Super Bowl party alternatives

Entertainment / Entertaining /

Image: https://www.dreamstime.com/stock-photo-football-fans-family-watchiing-game-together-their-home-image33357070

According to the NFL, last year's Super Bowl LVI amassed a viewing audience of around 208 million. But for all the millions of households that tune into one of the nation’s most popular televised events, some of us are simply ...Read more

Gretchen McKay/Pittsburgh Post-Gazette/TNS

Gretchen's table: A Valentine's Day cupcake recipe, with extra flavor from coffee

Entertainment / Entertaining /

Valentine's Day is so intertwined with chocolate that the two are almost synonymous. Yet it doesn't have to come in a red, heart-shaped box to make your special someone(s) feel the love on Feb. 14. A really good chocolate cake hits the sweet spot on V Day too.

These moist and tender cupcakes should satisfy even the pickiest chocolate lover's ...Read more

Hillary Levin/St. Louis Post-Dispatch/TNS

Chocolate makes Valentine's Day saucy

Entertainment / Entertaining /

Forget flowers. This Valentine’s Day, say it with chocolate sauce.

What could be a better expression of love, affection or even romantic interest than serving a dessert topped with a chocolate sauce you made yourself?

The stuff that comes out of a bottle or a can just does not have the same impact.

“I love you so much that I twisted the ...Read more

JOY SUMMERS/Minneapolis Star Tribune/TNS

It's time to hop on the butter board bandwagon

Entertainment / Entertaining /

All you need to make the easiest appetizer of the season is already in your fridge.

It's an idea so simple that it's hard to believe nobody has thought of it before. Butter boards are without question the best way to welcome guests to a party with low effort and high impact.

Imagine seeing a stick of butter, a knife and a sleeve of crackers on...Read more

Running Press/Running Press/TNS

How to throw cocktail expert’s 'extra-easy' Italian-themed holiday party

Entertainment / Entertaining /

André Darlington was just a kid when he experienced his first cocktail parties. This being the 1980s — and Darlington having a concert violinist for a father — these were fussy, formal affairs with chafing dishes, too many canapes and enough onion dip to feed an orchestra. Today, as one of the country’s most respected spirits writers, ...Read more

Dreamstime/TNS

7 no-regret New Year’s resolution parties

Entertainment / Entertaining /

Some people call them resolutions, others goals, and there are even those who may refer to them as a little pointless. But regardless of semantics, New Year’s fill-in-the-blanks offer an opportunity for a clean slate.

In celebration of new beginnings and shaking the dust off another year in the rearview, take a look at seven ways to ring in ...Read more

Dreamstime/Dreamstime/TNS

Colorado Springs wine experts give tips for buying budget-friendly bubblies and nibbles

Entertainment / Entertaining /

(Editor's Note: This story was originally published Dec. 29, 2021.)

Popping a cork on New Year's Eve doesn't have to pop the budget. Wines with bubbles range wildly in price: a bottle of 1998 Krug Clos d'Ambonnay will set you back about $2,000, while a bottle of André Cold Duck will damage your finances to the tune of $4.50 or so.

So, to make...Read more

Dreamstime/Dreamstime/TNS

8 days of November food celebrations (Thanksgiving not included!)

Entertainment / Entertaining /

November might include one of the holidays most known for having an abundance of food, but Thanksgiving isn’t the only sustenance-packed celebratory option. As it turns out, the fall-festive month is simply peppered with “food days” (see what I did there?). Check out 10 November calendar days dedicated to a diverse collection of eats and ...Read more

Juli Leonard/Raleigh News & Observer/TNS

Bored with traditional holiday sides? Here are more than 4 ways to mix it up.

Entertainment / Entertaining /

Holidays are a time of year for entertaining and family gatherings with food taking center stage.

Dishes can be wonderfully traditional or you can mix it up with a new twist on the classics. I love side dishes and often make a meal out of the various side offerings at a holiday table. The creativity, variety and choice of flavors make side ...Read more

DREAMSTIME/TNS

Sweet stress busters: Holiday cookies deliver more than taste

Entertainment / Entertaining /

You look like you need a cookie.

Nothing quite buoys our spirits like a sweet little treat. During the holiday season, we like to give cookies almost as much as we like to munch, spreading some edible cheer. According to a study by OnePoll.com, three out of every four Americans would consider giving cookies as a holiday gift. And even more ...Read more