A couple of weeks ago, I went to a friends dinner party and I had such a great time, so I decided to have more dinner parties and to not be so stressed out about it (not everything has to be perfect)
I think the reason that people have less and less dinnerparties (in Amsterdam) is because of the small houses and maybe because of everybodies busy lives. We also think that’s its a lot of work and “ain’t nobody got time for that”. But I’m trying to make it as easy as possible on you (and me). I think that with these tips, errbody can have a great and stressfree dinnerparty.
- Clean your house the day before, so the day off you can concentrate on everything else
- Create the menu days in advance, after asking your guests for their diets of course
- Set the table the night before, put glasses and plates upside down, to make sure they’re still clean the day after
- Refridgerate the drinks the day before
- Only prepare food that you made before
- Pick easy dishes to make ahead that don’t require much prep time: remember: easy does it!
- Spend time on the mis-en-place. The food can be very simple and easy, but when it looks pretty, it seems like you put more effort than you did
- Never opt for something fried; the smell alone will creep in your skin, clothes and hair.
- Make as much in advance as possible, leave the baking in the oven to the day off
- Make sure you make enough food (just enough is not enough) If guests liked what you cooked they will probably want seconds. Make sure you are prepared. You’ll enjoy the leftovers (puree them for soup, make an omelet or make a sandwich with leftover meat)
- Do your groceries a couple of days in advance. You’ll feel prepared but it will also buy you time when you forgot something
- Go easy on the hors d’oevres. It’s just a way to keep guests fed before the real dinner starts, which usually isn’t that far ahead (olives, nuts and light cheeses will do)
- Clean while cooking. Because they will make their way to the kitchen
- Make sure you’ll have at least 30 minutes of ‘free’ time right before the party starts. You probably will still be busy, but you could have 10 minutes left to sit down and look around your clean home (this makes me feel superrelaxed and ultra organized).
- Don’t forget to put on music before your guests arrive; it will get you in a great mood!