According to statistics, although 98% of Americans will choose a home-cooked meal over takeout, some factors make it unlikely to settle for the former. The pressure of work, taking care of a family, and, most importantly, entertaining house guests can take a toll on you. Fortunately, you can make things easier for yourself by knowing what to do. This includes meal prepping and following specific guidelines to make it all convenient. Below are some more tips.
- Consider prep-ahead recipes
The idea behind this move is to save you time and energy in the kitchen. When you have house guests, your ultimate aim as the host is to create a positive experience. In that case, spending all the time in the kitchen takes you away from your role. By the time you’re done, there is little energy to expend. Therefore, select your recipes ahead of time. Once you know what you want to feed your house guests, take the initiative to prep the meals.
Some of your meal preps can be kept in the freezer or refrigerator, depending on what you choose. When you’re ready, all it takes is to either stuff the oven or light the stove. One such meal you can try out is this butternut squash lasagna recipe. The exciting part about this savory meal is that you can prep two days before your guests arrive. That way, it would be eaten when it’s freshly baked.
- Share menu plans with your guests
Finding out your house guests’ dietary restrictions and food allergies can make you an excellent host. It is advisable to share the planned menu with them to avert inconveniences such as allergic reactions and hospital visits. This offers an opportunity to rule out allergies, aversions, and dietary restrictions. Moreover, your guests will feel at ease knowing that you put much consideration into their meal planning.
As a tip, avoid waiting until the last minute before sharing the menu. The least amount of time you can give is four days before their arrival. Additionally, in your bid to determine any food aversions, use the moment to find out about any other thing they love. These include their favorite tea, preferred drinks, etc. Furthermore, it is an excellent idea to find out if your guests are coming along with young kids.
- Don’t plan for new recipes when you have guests
The rule here is to stick to what you know and what you can cook even with your eyes shut. Planning and cooking a never-before-cooked meal for guests can be a recipe for disaster. This is because of the unfamiliarity with the ingredients or the method of cooking. It would be a different thing if you tried your hands at it several times and weeks before the guests arrived. Even when you ‘experimented,’ allow others to give their candid opinions about the new meal you prepared.
- Shop early
The pressure of last-minute grocery shopping can affect the quality of products you take off the shelves. This arises due to your speed-shopping and not carefully selecting food items from the grocery shop. Moreover, when you shop earlier, you have the advantage of going back to the store to purchase more items or ingredients you forgot about.
Hopefully, the next time you’re expecting guests, you will find these points helpful in your activities. One of the things your guests will remember about you will be the quality of your food and how good it tasted, so try your best to create an outstanding experience.