It’s summer and you want to be outside, enjoying the warmth of the breeze and your favourite people, not stuck in the kitchen. You want to pour yourself a cheeky glass of wine and have time to drink it before your guests arrive. We get it. And we want you to have your party cake and eat it too, so we asked our resident entertaining queen, Danielle Lyon (Manager of Partnerships and Events), to share her party food planning and prepping cheat sheet, with the help of Thermomix®.
It’s not cheating. It’s just being smart!
80% pre-prepped is the magic number
Aim for 80% pre-prepared and 20% made on the night with Danielle’s favourite go-tos.
Any simple dish made a day in advance that develops the richest flavours overnight is a winner. Go all out to keep things easy with Inside-out Chicken Parmas. They can be prepped the day before and popped in the fridge or frozen a week or more advance.
Or this is where Firra Cast Iron Cookware will come to the rescue. Think light curries, slow cooked meats or spicy baked dishes like enchiladas that just need to be reheated.
Keep snacks simple and fresh
Cut up some fresh crudités the day before and Vac-U-Seal to keep them fresh. Whip up a couple of dips like our Muhamara dip, and all that’s left to do on the day is pop them on a platter and that’s pre-dinner nibbles done.
Make food prep part of the party fun
Put the kids to work and keep them sweet by setting up a cookie or cupcake decorating table. “Preferably outside, where you can hose them down after!” says Danielle, speaking from experience.
Build a build-your-own pizza, poke or toastie bar. Get your Thermomix® on the case to make the base (with rice cooker or dough modes) and to chop, grate and mix the topping ingredients for you too. Then let your guests build the rest. Better yet, you can whip out crowd-pleasing pizzas in a flash with Ovana Portable Pizza Oven!
Invite your guests’ biggest strengths to the table
Another reason Danielle loves those 'build-your-own' bars is they give guests the opportunity to be a part of the event by asking them to bring along one of the ingredients. Play to their strengths, show your appreciation for their entertaining expertise, and ask them to bring along their signature dish.
“My friend Jess's cob loaf is so famous in our group that it's now a constant request. Another friend is a master at mojitos. If they’re good friends, they’ll want to help and they’ll love that you asked,” says Danielle.
And don’t be afraid to outsource dessert. There's always someone happy to bring along a cake or slice.
Take the stress out of the post-party clean up
Do you love entertaining but hesitate because it’s a pain to clean up after a party? If so, don’t despair – the aftermath of a home party doesn’t have to be a nightmare to deal with when you have a Kobold 2-in-1 vacuum mop. You can quickly whip round those high foot traffic areas and put your feet up while enjoying some cheeky party leftovers.