Tips For Planning Your Next Dinner Party

It’s never too early to start planning how your next dinner party will be a huge success. Establishing a list of dishes that you’re going to create, knowing the best time to shop for the items and preparing the dishes ahead of time will allow you to put together the perfect dinner with little stress.

Planning the Menu
Make sure to ask all guests about any food allergies or dietary restrictions before you’ve planned your meal. Try to use already-tested recipes to avoid surprises on the big day. If you’re determined to risk it, do a test run the week or day before. Your family might not thank you for that surprisingly inedible main course, but you’ll feel much more confident in your menu if you’ve had a chance to perfect your recipe.

Using In Season Ingredients
Take your time deciding which dishes you’d like to feature this year. Before you set anything in stone, assess the ingredients and figure out whether there are any that won’t be in season. If so, you may want to rethink the dish. Not only will out-of-season foods be difficult to shop for, but it’s likely that they won’t be as tasty as they can be. You can also take another approach to course-planning by looking at the foods that are in season and deciding your dishes from there. Consider fruits and veggies that will be in season to encourage healthy eating.

Shop Ahead
Plan and map out your grocery shopping trip by establishing a timeline. Non-perishables can be bought ahead of time and stored away. You’ll have to wait to purchase perishables such as fruits and vegetables, but knowing exactly what you need well before the big day will allow you to shop and cook effortlessly.

Planning for Left Overs
It’s always safer to buy and make more food than is necessary. Sending guests home with goody bags will ensure they leave happy today and eat well tomorrow. You can even encourage everyone to bring sealable containers so that he or she can take leftovers home.

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