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Host a party without the fuss – Tips and recipes to impress your guests

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Everyone loves sharing great food, drinks and conversations with friends, especially if you’re invited to a dinner party – but what about the host? 

Preparing for a dinner party can be complicated and stressful. We’ve put together these few tips and recipes ideas that should help you stay relax and enjoy your own party!

Avoid Complexity

First rule is to avoid complicated dishes that require last-minute preparation or cooking. When deciding on a menu, it’s always a good idea to choose dishes that can be prepared in advance to avoid the last-minute rush. Also, you should avoid any recipe that you’re trying for the first time: making dishes that you’ve done at least once or twice before will save a lot of stress and time!

Some ideas of how to proceed to keep things simple:

  • Freeze a batch of snacks and nibbles that you’ll just have to reheat when your guests arrive: homemade sausage rolls, mini wraps, quiches and pies accompanied by a variety of dips and sauces are easy to prepare in advance and will impress your guests.
Homemade sausage rolls with Peach and Mango Chutney by Laura Ford Nutrition.

Play it seasonal

Go with the season for the menu and table settings! For example, a spring party’s menu should be quite fresh and light with fresh seasonal flavours like juicy peaches, bursting tomatoes and sweet summer berries, whereas a winter’s menu should bring warmth and cosiness. Also, a small (or big) bunch of seasonal fresh flowers at the centre of the table will make a big difference!

Here are a few recipes ideas highlighting the best of Summer:

Summer mocktails by feedmeichi

Pairing wine and food is also a must, so check out this Seasonal food and wine matching by James Halliday.

Set the scene

Whether you’re throwing an intimate dinner party or a big cocktail party, setting your table the night before or in the morning is always a good idea. When it comes to table settings, some useful tips include adding a bunch of fresh flowers at the centre of the table, some candle light around the table or mixing plates and glasses with various styles or colours.

Finish in style

A dinner party isn’t complete without a mouth-watering dessert, and if you’re determined to impress guests, this is your last chance!

The good news is that some spectacular-looking desserts are truly easy to make. Here is a list of recipes that will  please every sweet tooth: lemon meringue pie, chocolate, hazelnut & salted caramel tart, flat apple & vanilla tart, chocolate marquise or blackcurrant and star anise chiffon cake, there are plenty to choose from!

Blackcurrant and star anise chiffon cake by simmer and boyle

Overall Enjoy!

Most of all, your friends and family will enjoy your company around the dinner table, so remember to sit back and relax!

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