Soiree :: Entertaining with Style

image used w permission by Rizzoli

I cannot tell you how delighted I was to get my hands on a copy of this book. Soiree, Entertaining with Style is a book to be savored. Filled with mouth watering recipes, exquisite photography and creative themes Soiree should be in everyone's home whether on the coffee table or kitchen bookshelf. Danielle's natural knack for entertaining is evident in every detail, from the invite to the menu to the carefully executed table. Indeed she is the hostess with the mostess, but really she is so much more, and with her help here both the novice as well as the seasoned party planner will find inspiration. Danielle carefully walks her readers through every step of the dinner party, whether intimate or large, from the planning to the execution with tips on creating invitations, selecting music, flowers and decoration - from planning a bar to selecting a menu.

The images will grab you. The recipes will inspire you. Her words will calm and encourage you.

Danielle has hosted the likes of Oscar de la Renta, Lela Rose and Rachel Roy. She shares with us her experiences and we benefit from those experiences.

I adore Danielle's philosophy - It's very much like my own - Keep things simple. Enjoy the moment. Treasure the memories. She believes in using shortcuts. She believes in letting others help. She believes that there are no right or wrong ways to doing something. "All you need is a little passion. Draw on the things that inspire you and make you feel good. Entertaining isn't about money or decor... It's about people. People make the party." These philosophies are evident on every page of this beautiful book. 

image used w permission by Rizzoli

image used w permission by Rizzoli
Little, simple details make a big statement... Danielle's guests get their own party favors. Herbs in little terra cotta pots also serve as the perfect place setting for a Pizza Parlor al Fresco.

image used w permission by Rizzoli

1 fresh dough ball
½ cup fresh tomato sauce
1 ounce Sweetgrass Dairy Green Hill cheese (or Camembert)
1 ounce Sweetgrass Dairy Tomme cheese (or Cantal or Comte)
1½ ounces Atlanta Fresh Mozzarella (or other fresh mozzarella)
2 tablespoons good-quality extra-virgin olive oil

Fresh Pizza Dough Balls
4 cups “Caputo 00” pizzeria flour or all-purpose flour
4 teaspoons salt
½ tablespoon active dry yeast
1½ basil leaves
1 cups ice-cold water *
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Combine all dry ingredients together in the bowl of a stand mixer and add water and oil.
Make sure not to pour the cold water directly onto the yeast. Using cold water stunts the
growth of the yeast so the fermentation happens slowly, creating a more flavorful dough.
Mix on the lowest speed for 3 minutes and then on the highest speed for 5 minutes. The
mixing action creates friction and heats the dough, which activates the yeast. If you do
not have a mixer, combine all the ingredients in a bowl and work them by hand until a
loose dough ball forms. Turn dough out on a lightly floured surface and knead
aggressively for 7 to 10 minutes, adding flour when dough seems too wet.
Please note this dough by nature is wet and can be difficult to handle.

Cover dough and let rise for 45 minutes or until almost doubled in size. Punch down
dough and form into a large ball, then cut into 4 equal pieces.
Form a dough ball by gently rolling one of the dough pieces in the palm of your hand. Be
sure to stretch the top of the ball down and around the rest of the ball, until the outer layer
wraps around the other side. Pinch the two ends together to make a smooth ball. Repeat
with remaining 3 balls. Dust pizza balls with flour, and store under a damp towel, in a
proofing tray, or on a sheet pan covered with plastic wrap. This will prevent the outside
of the ball from drying out and creating a crust. The top of the pizza ball should be soft
and supple.

Let pizza balls rest in a cool place for at least 1 hour before stretching. If you will not be
using your pizza balls right away you can refrigerate up to 24 hours or freeze them in
individual plastic freezer bags.

Stretch dough to approximately 14 inches round and spread a thin layer of sauce over
dough. Sprinkle evenly with cheeses and top with fresh basil. Drizzle with half the oil.

Pull pizza onto a peel and cook in a wood-fired oven or super-hot (500°F or hotter)
conventional oven. Cook until dough is nice and charred and cheese is melted. Remove
from oven and drizzle with remaining oil. Slice and serve

image used w permission by Rizzoli

image used w permission by Rizzoli

image used w permission by Rizzoli


¾ to 1 cup packed brown sugar 
(depending on sweetness of berries) 
4 cups fresh ripe strawberries, stems removed 
3 tablespoons fresh basil leaves 
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice 
12 ice pop molds and sticks 

Combine 2 cups water and brown sugar in a medium saucepan over high heat. Bring to a 
boil, reduce heat to medium, and cook until sugar dissolves into a simple syrup. Remove 
from heat and let cool. 

In a blender, combine 2 cups strawberries with basil leaves and 1 tablespoon lemon juice; 
pulse until blended. Set aside. Repeat with remaining strawberries, basil, and lemon juice. 
Divide simple syrup evenly among batches. 
Pour into ice pop molds and freeze at least 6 hours (ice pops will keep in freezer up to 2 
Place ice pop upside down in a wineglass and pour Prosecco over. Serve immediately. 

6 ripe peaches, peeled, pitted, and sliced 
3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice 
4 tablespoons finely chopped mint 
½ to ¾ cup sugar 
¼ teaspoon ground Vietnamese cinnamon (optional) 
Place peaches, lime juice, 2 tablespoons mint, sugar, and cinnamon (if using) in a blender 
and blend to combine. Taste and add more lime juice or sugar. Stir in remaining mint. 
Pour into ice pop molds and freeze at least 6 hours (ice pops will keep in freezer up to 2 

Place ice pop upside down in a wineglass and pour Prosecco over. Serve immediately.

I'm looking forward to hearing about how this inspires your own Soiree!
With Valentine's Day just around the corner, I think this would make the loveliest of Valentine!

Click here to order your own copy of Soiree by Danielle Rollins!