8 Surprising Mistakes You’re Making When Setting Your Holiday Table

Roasting an 18-pound bird or massive standing rib roast, making gravy from scratch, and then getting all the sides to the table before they’re ice -cold—these are the magic tricks of the holiday season. But setting the table? That’s a no-brainer. In fact, it’s usually a chore you assign to kids. Still, it’s not quite the cinch it appears to be. If you’re not careful, you could end up creating chaos and leaving your guests with a bad taste in their mouths—and we don’t mean Aunt Edna’s boiled Brussels sprouts. So why not focus on making every little detail right? One important takeaway from entertaining and organizing pros: Tackle the table well ahead of time. “Setting it at least a couple of days in advance is an easy way to check off a box on your to-do list, so you can concentrate on the task without worrying about something burning on the stove,” says celebrity caterer Andrea Correale, founder of Elegant Affairs. Ready to dig in? Chew on these mistakes you should avoid at all costs when setting your table for guests. 1. Enormous flower arrangements—or flowers at all Photo by Chango & Co. “There’s usually no room for flowers on the Thanksgiving table,” says Julie Corracio, the organizing pro at Reawaken Your Brilliance. Plus, an overly large arrangement blocks guests’ view, causing neck strain as they try to see around the mums. Can’t live without posies? “Put them on the buffet,” she says. 2. Insisting on family-style serving As with flowers, there’s really no room at the table for family-style serving. “It creates too much confusion,” Correale cautions. Instead, put the dinner plates on a side buffet or the kitchen island, along with...

11 Sweet And Scary Treats To Make This Halloween

Candy might be the treat of choice for most on Halloween, but for those planning on throwing a spooky party this year, some other sugary or savory treats should definitely be on the menu. While some guests may be looking for something to add to their sugar rush, others might be after something to balance out the sweet stuff. And of course, everyone’s going to be looking for something that brings the spooky feel to the snack table. In order to make all the ghouls and goblins haunting your party happy, check out these 11 recipes for the ultimate in Halloween party treats. Ghost S’mores Dip: This dip is a perfect treat because it combines the best part of summer s’mores with the theme of Halloween. Serve with graham crackers for the complete effect. Graveyard Chicken Enchilada Dip: For those seeking a savory treat that provides plenty of spooky flavors underneath the surface, this is the way to go. Jack O’Lantern Brownies: Get the thrill of Jack O’Lanterns at your party—without the hassle of time-consuming carvings. Jack Skellington Oreo Pops: Anyone who likes to think of “The Nightmare Before Christmas” as a Halloween movie will appreciate the time and effort you put into these nightmarish treats. Mini Macaroni and Cheese Muffins This savory treat, compliments of Andrea Correale of Elegant Affairs, will be a spooktacular addition to a Halloween party. This savory treat is perfect for Halloween. Photo: Andrea Correale, Elegant Affairs Ingredients: 1 package elbow pasta 2 tbsp. butter, divided 3 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese 1 cup milk 2 eggs, beaten 1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs 1/4 tsp. paprika Salt and pepper, to taste How To Make: Preheat oven to...

Adult Beverage Roundup: Halloween Style!

Halloween is the perfect holiday to play with your food—and beverages! There are lots of creative options when it comes to cocktails for fall and especially Halloween. Here are a few of our favorites. Remember, to enjoy responsibly. If you’re lit brighter than the Halloween decorations, you better be at home or have a designated driver! CÎROC Black Raspberry Bramble The Bramble. Photo: CÎROC. Not only the perfect mix and mask of flavors, but doubles as a great centerpiece for your Halloween event. Mixed with lime juice, simple syrup and blackberries, it’s wickedly delicious. Ingredients 1.5 ounces CÎROC Black Raspberry 0.5 ounces lime juice 0.5 ounces simple syrup 3 blackberries Directions Muddle blackberries in a rocks glass. Add crushed ice. Add rest of ingredients in a shaker with one ice cube only. Strain into the rocks glass and garnish with a fresh blackberry. Black Smash Black Smash. Photo: CÎROC. A grueling Halloween hazard. Refreshing and subtly sweet, the bloody concoction is mixed with lemon juice, simple syrup, mint leaves, and blackberries for a combination that will definitely impress. Ingredients 2 ounces CÎROC Black Raspberry 0.5 ounces lemon juice 0.5 ounces simple syrup 4 mint leaves 5 blackberries Directions Add all ingredients in a shaker with ice. Shake well. Double strain into a rocks glass and garnish with fresh raspberries. Preparada The Preparada. Photo: CÎROC. Mixed with splashed black raspberry, Chamoy, lime juice grenadine, and amber beer, it’s wickedly beautiful. Rimmed with chili, salt and smoked paprika, it’s not for the faint of heart! Ingredients 1.5 ounces CÎROC Black Raspberry 0.5 ounce Chamoy 0.5 ounce lime juice 0.5 ounce grenadine...

Celebrity Caterer Andrea Correale Shares Some Tasty Recipes Perfect For Football Match Days

Football season is well and truly underway and we are all hooked! Whether you’re supporting at the stadium or having a get together with your friends at home, what better way to enjoy the game than with some tasty, delicious bites. Celebrity Caterer, Andrea Correale, who founded premier catering service Elegant Affairs serving New York, The Hamptons and Long Island for more than 20 years, exclusively shares with us some definite crowd-pleasing recipes for game day. Keep reading to find step by step, easy to follow recipes for some delightful snacks. Sesame Chicken Lollipops with Miso Dipping Sauce   Ingredients: 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour 2 tablespoons cornstarch 1/4 teaspoon baking soda 1/4 teaspoon baking powder 2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce 2 tablespoons water 1 teaspoon vegetable oil 1 dash sesame oil 1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breast meat – cubed into 2” pieces 1 quart peanut oil for frying 2 tablespoons toasted white sesame seeds As needed long wooden skewers As needed miso dipping sauce   Directions: Sift flour with 2 tablespoons of cornstarch, baking soda and baking powder Mix together soy sauce, water, vegetable oil and a pinch of sesame oil; stir until smooth Fold in chicken until coated with the batter, then cover and refrigerate for 20 minutes Heat oil in a deep fryer or large saucepan to a temperature of 375 degrees F Drop in the battered chicken pieces and fry until they turn golden brown and float to the top of the oil, 3 to 4 minutes Drain on a paper towel lined plate Sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds to garnish To serve, skewer chicken pieces using long wooden...

Bella New York: Summer’s Winding down, but you can get wound up with these Fab Cocktails

Summer’s Winding down, but you can get wound up with these Fab Cocktails Andrea Correale‘s Grapefruit Collins 2 oz. Gin ½ oz. fresh-squeezed lemon juice ½ oz. fresh-squeezed grapefruit juice 1 oz. simple syrup 3 oz. of Pellegrino sparkling water Grapefruit zest Mint leaves Rim glass with grapefruit wedge and dip into salt and grapefruit zest mixture. Add Gin, lemon juice, grapefruit juice and simple syrup to a martini shaker with ice, shake well, and strain into glass. Add Pellegrino sparkling water and stir. Garnish with grapefruit zest and mint leaves. Read Full Article on Bella New...