Friday, March 13, 2020

5 Tips For Hosting A Successful Dinner Party

Image Credit: Pexels, Free to Use Licence. 
Dinner parties have always been a great way to entertain family and friends, providing the perfect environment to get together, enjoy good food and have a great conversation. But for many people, dinner parties are also quite stressful, with a lot of pressure put on the host to ensure that evening runs smoothly for all attendees. So how can you be sure to throw a successful dinner party? Here are our top five tips. 

1. Plan Plan Plan 

Dinner parties can end up quite complex, especially when you start to increase the number of guests you are catering to. Try to plan dinner parties as far in advance as you can to give everyone plenty of time to book childcare at home and to sort out their own diaries, while you plan the menu and your own home preparations. 


2. Do discuss dietary requirements

There’s nothing worse than pulling together a fantastic menu only to be put on the spot when someone reveals their intolerance to a key ingredient. Regardless of who you’ve invited be sure to ask them if they have any dietary requirements or serious dislikes to any foods so that you can plan a menu that you know your guests will love. 


3. Think outside the box

The food is a big focal point at dinner parties, so give everyone something to talk about by thinking outside of the box and preparing a menu with some exotic flavors that your guests may never have tried before. Why not head to South India with this sambar recipe or take a trip to Morocco with a slow-cooked tagine? Don’t be afraid of bold, new flavors, just find a reputable recipe, and follow it. 


4. Choose a menu that can be prepared in advance

Your guests want you to be present at your own dinner party, so try to avoid recipes that will have you slaving over the stove all evening when you really want to be socializing with your guests. The key to spending minimal time in the kitchen is in creating a menu that can be largely prepared in advance and requires less overall effort. For starters, opt for something cold that you can plate up ahead of time, for main courses consider things such as curries, stews, and tagines that can be slow-cooked during the day and that don’t require any elaborate plating, and for dessert go for something that can easily be reheated or that have already been left to set in the fridge. 


5. Make it as self-serve as possible

Finally, to reduce your workload one further, try to ensure that as many aspects of your dinner party are self-service. For example, set up a drinks table with all the things your guests could need to make themselves their own drinks and when it comes to food, choose big sharing platters and allow people to serve themselves at the table. This more communal and relaxed style of dinner party takes a huge amount of stress off your own plate while giving guests the freedom they want to be able to get a drink when they like and to put as much as they do or don’t want on their own plates.


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