by Troop Atomic Mommy
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It can be extremely stressful to host a dinner party. Preparing a delicious meal to serve your guests, setting the table, and so on, are all things that must be done before your guests arrive. The truth is that hosting a dinner party does not have to be stressful at all.
In order to achieve this, everyone, including yourself, must embrace a light and relaxed atmosphere. Here are 6 helpful tips for throwing a casual dinner party.
Make sure you are prepared
The one job that most of us hate doing is the dishes, so make sure that the dishwasher is empty before the dinner party starts. By doing this, you have plenty of space for all the dishes and plates from the party, and you can load them in as you go. It is such a simple step, but one that you will be pleased you did – no piles of dirty dishes in the kitchen. In the same vein, make sure the trash can was emptied beforehand as well. You don’t want to be messing about with emptying it while your guests are around.
Set the table
If there is one thing you can do to make your table look better, it is to have a beautiful centerpiece. It does not have to be ornate or expensive, but it does serve to tie the entire table together visually. Most grocery stores have wonderful flowers, and even if you simply buy some greenery and one or two brightly colored flowers, it will go a long way toward making your table look attractive. Add a few tea lights to really make your table pop!
Check for dietary requirements beforehand
This is not usually an issue if it is a small, intimate gathering with your closest friends – you will know their likes and dislikes, and what they can or can’t eat. However, if it is entertaining a new client, your boss, the new neighbors or someone you do not know all that well, it is essential you ask about dietary requirements in advance. You do not want to cook a steak dish and find out one guest is a vegan, or prepare a nut roast to find you have someone with a nut allergy.
Think carefully about the menu
This is where it is essential not to overcomplicate things. Go for something simple and delicious using in-season ingredients. If you are trying something new, make sure you have a trial run beforehand. Learning how to cook duck breast is simple, but not something you want to be doing when you have a table full of hungry guests waiting in the next room. Of course, an alternative is a pot luck, where everyone brings a dish along with them – this is great when you have more than six guests because it helps take the pressure off you.
Prepare what you can in advance
Cooking at least one course from start to finish ahead of time will help you avoid a last-minute scramble. If you want to undertake something difficult, it is unquestionably the option to choose. You will be astonished at how many recipes can be prepared ahead of time. Consider each course and consider which portions of it you can complete ahead of time. If the response is “nothing,” you might want to think about choosing something else.
Make sure you have plenty of wine
Dinner gatherings and alcoholic beverages go hand in hand. It is not only possible for wine or cocktails to enhance the flavors of the food, but they may also help everyone unwind and become more social.
Guests bring a bottle of wine as a present for the host, according to standard dinner party etiquette. However, you should not rely on others to bring the alcoholic beverages to the party for you to enjoy. Make sure you have a couple of bottles of wine on hand before the festivities begin.
Cocktails could also be served as a fun surprise for your guests. To alleviate the stress of creating a drink that everyone would enjoy, create a bar station to guests to mix and match their own drinks to their liking. All you need is a table, a couple of different types of alcoholic beverages, and some ice to get started.
Don’t forget to provide some non-alcoholic options for those who cannot or do not want to drink alcohol.
And there you have it! Hosting a dinner party does not have to be stressful at all. Rather, planning an enjoyable dinner party is as easy as 1-2-3 and all you need to do, is follow these great tips. Are you ready to plan your next dinner party? When you do, be sure to let us know how it goes!