Want to entertain and save money, time and stress whilst doing it? Here’s how.
Come up with a menu – Sharing dishes are best!
Use your monthly supermarket’s recipe magazine, favourite restaurant menus, cooks books and food blogs as inspiration. Supermarket magazines are particularly great in offering seasonal produce ensuring you are buying the best value products. Seasonal produce is key – Don’t get caught out buying Asparagus that is $4 a bunch! Seasonal items will be cheaper and taste better being in their prime growing time! Write a menu and try and do this at least 1 week before your event. Try and theme your menu with a specific theme or cuisine, it will make planning that little bit easier and ensure your dishes work together. A menu will stop you from buying things you don’t need and remove stress from the day. I love family-style share dishes where everyone helps themselves. It makes plating up easy, washing up a breeze and it’s a beautiful way to eat. It brings people together.
Write a list and order your groceries online
Save yourself time and stress by organising an online delivery or click and collect. There is no way I would drag the kids grocery shopping for a party – It also stops unnecessary purchases and means I stick to my budget.
Prep as much as you can ahead of time
Wash and chop your salad, ensure you have marinated your meat, cut up the veggies that are going in with the roast, slice your bread, have some ice pre-made, have your drinks in the fridge. Prep will mean less time in the kitchen and more time with the people you care about. Reusable food pouches are such a great way to store prep eg. salad leaves, sliced bread etc. They save on space and washing up.
Set the table in advance
Ensure you have your plates, cutlery and glassware out either the night before or morning of your event. It’s one less thing to think about on the day.
Fill up some jugs with water available to self serve
A jug filled with water, ice and cut up lemon or lime not only looks beautiful, it is a super handy and considerate way for guests to be able to help themselves.
Invest in some wooden chopping boards
To add a rustic edge to the way you serve your food, invest in some wooden boards. They are a fantastic way to serve up a multitude of meals, from crusty bread and dip, crumbed cutlets or a cheese plate. The options really are limitless. You will use these again and again.