NEW YORK — With the rise in two-career households and the increasingly hectic life styles most people lead, you would think that Americans would spend less time entertaining. After all, why spend a lot of time and energy preparing dishes when so many things come prepackaged?
Nevertheless, Americans spend a great deal of time and get a great deal of satisfaction out of entertaining, according to a survey by Food & Wine magazine.
According to the study, American adults spend about 8 1/2 hours getting ready for a dinner party. That includes cleaning, planning, shopping, cooking and setting the table.
Consumers spend an average of $75 on food, wine, liquor, flowers and decorations per dinner party.
Four out of five of those surveyed said they felt that presentation is as important as the food actually served, and most hosts spend a little more than three hours cooking. Only a very few will take a chance on a new recipe when company is expected.