Cooking en masse in the home can be a challenge.
A summer barbecue might seem like a fun idea, but can soon get out of hand once you start catering for different tastes.
I thought it might be helpful to share a quick guide to whipping up summer party food that everyone will love…
Plan everything well in advance
For a dinner party, planning just a couple of weeks in advance is fine. Larger summer gatherings will need a couple of months.
Think about recipes, budget, ingredients to buy in advance versus fresh, and plan a cooking timeline. For larger functions, try to get a handle on your RSVPs for any dietary requirements and so that you don’t end up with lots of leftovers.
Keep your recipes simple
When planning your recipes, you can still create quirky themes and appetisers without them taking you hours.
From miniature burgers to pint-sized pizza rolls or muffin-tray quiches, there are tonnes of awesome summer food ideas out there that are quick and easy.
Also plan variety; if your guests are predominantly meat-eaters, try to have chicken, beef and fish dishes on offer. It’s also worth making a couple of vegetarian appetisers that can be put out straight away to keep guests happy while you’re busy elsewhere.
Prepare where you can
Although most of your recipes will need to be cooked on the day, there are still plenty of elements you can cover off in advance to minimise the stress.
Use your cooking timeline to work out what order things need to be prepared in, and how soon you can get them finished. For example, if you’re making your own alcoholic frozen lollies for the party, make them weeks in advance. Salads and sides on the other hand, can only be done the night before for freshness.
Create a feature that will work for you
Finally, everyone wants their summer party to stand out in people’s minds. Fun theming and features are often a good way of getting people to remember it.
But who says it just has to look nice?
Why not go down in BBQ history and hire out a centrepiece that can also cater for a lot of hungry mouths?
Who wouldn’t remember something like a hog roast machine, chocolate or cocktail fountains. I once had a vodka luge at a Christmas party.
Yes, it got very messy!
Are you holding a summer party this year? Let me know what you have planned in the comments.
Disclaimer: This is a collaborative post sponsored by Hog Roast Machines.