Having people over for a meal can, for some, be a stressful affair. It doesn’t have to be. Here’s guest blogger Loic Savrimoutou to your rescue.
Next time you’re hosting, consider the following.
Cook something you’ve already cooked.
It’s one thing to follow instructions from a cookbook. But maybe the temperatures and timings are a little off. The last thing you want is a crazy dash to the shops to fix a mistake. Cook it for yourself once or twice.
Keep it simple.
The joy of sharing a meal with others often comes from the people you’re with. Make the people the focus, not so much the food. Remember, if you’re not a professional chef – there’s no need to place that type of pressure on yourself.
Low prep snacks.
It’s always a good idea to have light, easily prepared snacks for your guests to graze on when they arrive. It buys you time while you finish your prep, and keeps your guests from starving. Think olives, cold cuts (prosciutto, salami) or fresh baguette with oil and salt.
Keep the numbers low.
If you can, try to have only 2-3 people over. The fewer people you have over, the fewer you have to take care of. It also means you’re not dividing your attention between people as much, and creates a more intimate environment.
Lean on your guests.
If your guests offer to bring something, take them up on it. The less work you have to do, the better. Have fun with it- is there a salad or dessert that’s a specialty of theirs? If not, booze is always an easy option.
Prepare in advance, and consider the timings.
Plan out exactly what you’re going to cook, even a couple of days in advance. Shop deliberately. Consider the prep time in relation to your schedule. For a midweek dinner party, a gnarly multi-course meal might not be the go. Instead, consider a one pot meal. Think stir fry, or tray bake.
Don’t make plans for afterwards.
Where possible, try not to overload the day. There’s nothing worse than a meal with a time limit hanging overhead. The whole point is that you’re taking time to stop and relax, so relax fully!
Loved these hosting life hacks? Here’s more wisdom from the YFM blog: