Scanned from Time to Entertain by Charlotte Turgeon (1954)
Fifty-four years after this printing, I'm hard-pressed to argue with Ms Turgeon on the import of having a few staple schmancy things tucked around the house, should mid-week meal boredom encroach or a party break out. Can't say I'm especially aligned with her specifics, but that could easily be a function of the 5+ decade divide.
I pride myself on being able to entertain at a moment's notice, due to the presence of these just-slightly-left of my central (olive oil, stock, Parmesan, fish sauce, double-black soy, tomato paste, rice/red wine/balsamic vinegars, fresh herbs) everyday ingredients.
Pickled watermelon rind
Frozen Swedish meatballs
Strange potato chips
Vosges exotic chocolate bars
Blood orange bitters
Supermarket buttermilk biscuits in a can
Bottled BBQ sauce
I can MacGuyver a party for 12+ people in ten minutes flat if I have that on hand, so I tend to replenish my stock any time it's low. Floor's open, folks -- what's in your stash?