ENTERTAINING FOR THE HOLIDAYS?

Food Network Host Marc Silverstein has Some Helpful Hints to Make Your Event a Success!

New York - December 18th, 2008 /PRNewswire/ — The holidays have arrived and with it brings reasons to celebrate with family and friends. Whether you're having a traditional family dinner, a gathering of friends and coworkers, or an open house for the whole neighborhood, there are essential tips you need to know to prepare for your next event.

"From cooking short cuts and time savers, to favorite traditional recipes and the latest holiday cocktails, there are several ways to make your next holiday gathering a success," says Marc Silverstein, Food Network Host and National Entertaining expert.

"Use all-natural cooking stocks as a great shortcut for creating restaurant-quality dishes, such as delicious and flavorful Roasted Turkey and Pan Gravy. All you do is combine 1 3/4 cups Swanson® Chicken Stock and 3 tablespoons of all-purpose flour. This short cut will give you more time to spend with friends and family and less time in the kitchen. Stock and broth are not interchangeable. The rule of thumb is that stock keeps meat dishes juicy and enhances their natural flavors. Broth is best for soups and side dishes. You can go to www.swansonstock.com for other great recipes and cooking and entertaining tips.

"To keep holiday meal prep simple, use timesaving products like Idahoan Four Cheese Mashed Potatoes. To create a quick and easy Four-Cheese Potato Stuffed Mushrooms, spoon a mixture of Idahoan Four Cheese Mashed Potatoes, chives and a little salt into the mushrooms caps. The delicious stuffed mushrooms are sure to be a great crowd pleaser. You can also find other delicious potato sides that are made from 100% real Idaho potatoes by going to www.idahoan.com.

"Serve traditional favorites that everyone will enjoy. The Green Bean Casserole is an iconic holiday side dish served in more than 30 million households each holiday season. In 1955, Ms. Dorcas Reilly, a former manager of Campbell's Kitchen, created the classic side dish using three popular items that are still found in most American kitchens today: green beans, Campbell's Cream of Mushroom Soup and French's Fried Onions. What is great is you can also customize your Green Bean Casserole to feature your family's own favorite flavors. Try adding garlic, red pepper, bacon, pecans or cheese. You can also visit www.campbellkitchen.com for more holiday side dishes.

"A gathering wouldn't be a gathering without the cocktails. However, the key is to serve a drink that is versatile, like a B&B. B&B stands for Benedictine & Brandy. The barman who invented B&B first mixed BÉNÉDICTINE with fine French brandy, and the name was shortened to 'B&B.' Invented in New York City in the 1930s, it is also the first pre-mixed cocktail ever bottled and sold. With every sip of B&B, you also enjoy a rich history. For a perfect after-dinner drink, you can enjoy B&B in a snifter, over ice, or mixed into a contemporary cocktail. B&B is also the ideal complement to any dessert you are serving. Its amazing flavor profile with Acadia honey, cinnamon, and vanilla pairs well with any holiday dessert, from a rich chocolate cake to frozen banana soufflé. A more versatile liqueur is hard to find If you want to impress your guests with a festive, yet easy cocktail, try the B&B Champ: Simply mix one part B&B and one part chilled champagne into a snifter. If you are looking for a fruity cocktail, give the B&B Squeeze a try: Just combine one part B&B and three parts orange or grapefruit juice with ice in a snifter. B&B is the only cognac liqueur on the market," says Silverstein.