Have you been asked to host a large family dinner? Especially in states like Tennessee, where people often visit for the holidays, you might have been presented with the opportunity to arrange a holiday or an annual extended-family dinner. The prospect might seem so unnerving that you immediately begin sweating the small stuff before even getting started! Don’t worry; we’ve all been there! It doesn’t have to be so intimidating, though. With some planning, organization, and preparation – not to mention plenty of delicious recipes – hosting a large family dinner can be an enjoyable experience.
This article will provide tips and tricks on tackling your next big family gathering with ease.
Tips to Host a Successful Large Family Dinner:
We all want to put forth our best culinary efforts when hosting a large family dinner, so here are some top tips to ensure your gathering is a smashing success:
Start Planning Early:
Whether you’re serving an elaborate five-course meal or a more casual buffet, it’s important to start planning early. Give yourself plenty of time to research recipes, shop for ingredients, and prepare the dishes. It will help you avoid any last-minute stress or panic!
You can use a meal-planning app or website to make the process easier. Of course, nothing beats Tennessee’s famous cuisines, such as the Southern-style oven-fried chicken or a grilled southwestern steak salad. If you’re a pro at these, you’ll have the recipe card covered in no time!
Pick the Finest Wine:
There are no two ways about it: your guests will expect some fine wine to accompany the meal.
When selecting wines, consider options that will pair well with your dishes. For example, you can get the best blueberry wine from Tennessee Homemade Wines, which is great for light meals like salads and fish. You can serve it chilled or at room temperature, depending on your preference. Opt for a robust red if you’re serving a heavier meal, like roast beef or lamb.
Pay Attention to Your Dinner Spread:
Presenting a varied and extensive dinner spread is essential for a successful family gathering. By including different dishes, you can ensure that everyone will find something to enjoy. So, think of complimentary dishes that appeal to a wide range of tastes and dietary needs. After all, you might have guests from all over the country. For example, if you’re serving a main dish with meat, ensure you include vegetarian options.
Don’t overlook gluten-free options, either. You can easily make gluten-free meals with a few simple substitutions.
Make Sure to Have Enough Food:
Most of us only cook for a small family daily. So, when it comes to hosting a large family dinner, there’s a possibility that the bowls and platters may not be able to accommodate everyone’s portion.
To avoid this situation, make sure to cook extra. If you’re preparing a buffet, it’s best to have a variety of dishes so that the guests can pick and choose what they want.
Keep Your Kitchen Organized:
We are all messy (to some extent). But do your guests need to know that tiny detail? Of course, not! It’s going to reflect poorly on you and your dinner gathering. So, keep your kitchen as organized and tidy as possible, even if it’s just for a few hours. Wipe down the counters, clear away any clutter, and ensure your cooking supplies are within easy reach.
Set the Mood:
You must have heard that one eats with their eyes first. So, you’ll want to create a setting that will make your guests feel at home. Set up the table with elegant plates, glasses, and cutlery. Pull out your best tablecloth and place blooms in the center.
Light some candles, turn on some music that softly plays in the background, and voila!
End with a Sweet Note:
Finish your family gathering on a sweet note by serving desserts that will tantalize everyone’s taste buds. You can create a delicious homemade cake or a cherry pie. If you’re looking for something extra special, why not try a homemade ice cream sundae bar? Adding fun toppings, like fresh fruits and nuts, can make it even more memorable. Other options include a tall chocolate mousse or a warm peach cobbler. Yum!
Fail-Proof Recipes for a Large Family Dinner:
Although most of us choose to go with our tried-and-true family recipes, it’s always nice to try something new. To help you out, we’ve compiled a list of fail-proof recipes to make your dinner a hit. From savory dishes like rosemary-roasted potatoes to comforting classics like mac and cheese, these recipes will please even the pickiest of eaters.
Mac and Cheese:
This classic dish is a favorite among kids and adults alike. You can serve it as the main entrée without a doubt. You can use whole-wheat pasta and add some vegetables like peas or corn for a healthier version. (Diazepam)
Roast beef is the way to go if you want to impress your guests. Marinate it overnight and slow-cook it in a low oven for several hours. Serve with potatoes and vegetables, or simply enjoy as is. You can also make gravy with pan juices to make it more delicious.
Potatoes are a favorite, regardless of age. This recipe is easy to make and adds a delicious herby flavor. Simply toss some rosemary, garlic, and olive oil before baking in the oven. Serve as a side dish or as part of a larger meal.
Grilled Chicken Ranch Salad:
This salad combines the flavors of grilled chicken, ranch dressing, and a mix of fresh vegetables. You can add in some grilled shrimp or steak for a heartier dish. Serve with some toasted bread or croutons on the side.
Beef Braids is one dish that is a wonderful centerpiece and is sure to be a hit. It’s easy to make and looks impressive. Plus, you can customize the filling with your favorite ingredients. To create an unforgettable dish, you can use ground beef, sausage, cheese, mushrooms, and anything else. Serve it with some mashed potatoes and a side salad.
Family dinners take a lot of work. It can be a lot to manage, from cleaning the house and preparing meals to ensuring everyone gets along. However, with some planning and preparation, you’ll create an enjoyable evening that will be remembered for years. So, take out your cookbooks and plan your menu ahead of time. Then, prepare for the compliments that’ll make it all worthwhile! Enjoy!