For the longest time I thought entertaining meant an all-out war with my family, my kitchen, and my senses. It was something I felt I had to conquer in order to become an amazing wife and friend. But I now realize that had I taken a step back and just made a few simple things a little extra special, I could have saved myself the stress and had more time to enjoy those around me. Here are 5 things you can do so you don't make the same mistakes I did!
- Add a Bag: It sounds silly, but do you know how darling cookies in groups of three are in a glycine bag? What about individual donuts in a small brown sack with their sugary tops peeking out? Store-bought goodies can be beautiful when you add a little oompf!
- Quality Over Quantity: Although I'm sure we all remember the time we ate something until our heads fell off, there's a good chance you have fonder memories of the times you ate really spectacular things, even if they were smaller servings. Buy the best you can afford, even if it means serving less.
- Don't Apologize: Although this works for every type of food or dish you might be serving, if you feel the need to apologize for anything and everything to make sure your guests are happy (wait, maybe that's just me)... don't. Remember what Julia Child said. Own your food and make it as special as it really is.
- Kick It Up a Notch: At the risk of sounding like a Food Network catchphrase, the ability to make a basic mayo into sriracha goodness, or adding herbed butter to the outside of that steak that just came off the grill... these are all good things to show off. Layering in flavor is a great way to make a simple burger into one that's banging. Wait, scratch the g. Make that bangin'.
- Don't Serve A Whole Meal: It's easier to make a single ingredient or food sing if it's not fighting for a place in the spotlight with seven other options. Instead of having folks over for dinner, try cocktails and drinks. Try just dessert, or even just cookies. That said, when making less, make sure to test your recipes in advance to make sure they're extra tasty!
Are you a pro at keeping it simple and having superstar results every time? Share your tips and tricks to making simple special in the comments below!
(Image: Nora Singley)