The holidays can be stressful, especially when you’re entertaining a large amount of people. When catering for a party, there are some tips and tricks that can help alleviate some of the headaches of the holiday season. Stay cool as a cucumber with these five pieces of advice.
Know how much food is enough. Watch your budget and don’t worry about leftovers by understanding how much product you’ll need at an event. How many guests will be there? How long is the event? For a cocktail party without dinner, plan on 10-15 appetizers per person. For a dinner event, plan on around 5 appetizers per person along with a salad, around seven ounces of protein for the main course, three sides and dessert.
Follow a timeline. Deadlines are important, especially when it comes to serving food to large quantities of people. Plan out your timeline in advance and make sure to stick to it. It’s okay to stray by 10 minutes or so, but any longer than that and people start to get antsy. Yes, problems can happen but as they say in show business, “the show must go on!”
Start early. Give yourself ample time to prepare in the time leading up to the event and the day of the event. When you run late, it puts more stress on your shoulders and you don’t need that. Starting your day early means you have time to deal with any kinks in the game plan and still have time to spare. Just like Santa, make your list and check it twice to ensure things run smoothly.
Be flexible. Don’t dwell on things that go wrong, but be flexible to change when things don’t go your way. Adapt, move forward and chances are that your clients/guests won’t even notice. Slap on a smile and don’t let them see you sweat while you think quickly on your toes.
Have a signature holiday drink/food. You can still have a classy or modern meal without being corny, but it’s nice to have somewhat of a theme to your event. Have a signature drink for guests to sip like a candy cane martini or hot buttered rum to get into the holiday spirit. When it comes to the food, there are plenty of holiday themes you can add into your appetizers or sides, whether you make your cheeseballs look like Christmas ornaments or simply stick to a holiday color scheme (think red cherry tomatoes filled with goat cheese and topped with pesto).