I'm a Southern gal, born and bred, so hospitality is practically encoded in my DNA. We take that whole "kindness to strangers" thing very seriously down here—it's not just a line in a Tennessee Williams play (though it is good one). So, needless to say, I'm always prepared with something to sip and serve to visitors or neighbors who darken my door. Indeed, the idea of being caught empty-handed is enough to give me a full-on case of the vapors.
And truly, it doesn't take a Herculean effort—all you need is a little something to sip on and a bite of this or that to wash down with it. Heck, I've been served saltine crackers and R.C. cola before and I received both with gratitude. If you want to get all fancy-pants about it, though, here are a few recipes that you can whip up in a New York minute—no matter where you are.
—By Stacey Norwood, Multimedia Editor