Entertaining Tips – Volume 1

Gathering with friends and family can be one of the most enjoyable experiences available, it can also be one of the most stressful for those entertaining.  The more we can reduce stress from these occasions, the more enjoyment we can derive from our company and event.  For over 40 years, GiftCollector has been devoted to providing wonderful ingredients necessary for entertaining.  We pride ourselves on offering high quality products that are sure to make a lasting impression on your guests and create memorable traditions for years to come.  With this in mind, we offer these simple entertaining tips to help you with your next gathering.

Stay within your comfort zone

Choose a menu that is within your budget as well as your skill level.  Creating a list of options that you have prepared before is a great place to start. If you would like to try new things, consider offering them as complements to the main dish you have prepared before. This will allow you to have a much better sense of how much time you will need to prepare the dish, the resources that will be needed, as well as the quantity to prepare.

Keep it simple

Try not to over extend yourself, invite only the amount you can comfortably serve.  Create a balance of previously prepared food with those requiring last minute finishing details.  Try adding simple, easy items to fill out your menu.

Plan ahead

By choosing a menu that you have created before, you should have a good idea on how much time it will take to prepare.  If your menu requires baking, think about your oven size, will it all fit at once? Are there conflicting baking times and temperatures? Be sure and take this into consideration when thinking about your preparation schedule. Also, be aware of space for your refrigerator and freezer if applicable.

Invite in advance

Give your guests plenty of time to plan for your event.  As a good rule of thumb, plan on inviting your guests 10 days in advance for informal events and at least 2 weeks ahead for more formal occasions. Particularly for formal events, written invitations are always a good idea, and always be very clear about the events details (time, type of event, etc…).

Serve promptly

Allow plenty of time for appetizers and beverages, but try not to create famished guests at the time of dinner.  As a good practice, try to serve dinner approximately 1 hour after your guests arrive.

Enjoy yourself

Should something not turn out as expected, make light or it and move on.  Try not to let the little things ruin your event, as the purpose is to get together with those close to us, not to worry about over cooked beef or cold soup 😉