Home & Decor (Malaysia) - - Feature -

It’s been said once, and likely should be said again and again af­ter, but plan­ning ahead in this sea­son can re­ally save your party when you’re up against the clock. Smaller par­ties re­quire less prepa­ra­tion in terms of food, but don’t worry if you’ve got a large party to cook for. Buy an­tipasti like olives and roasted bell pep­pers, and serve them with fruit and nuts. Cheese boards also make for fan­tas­tic starters over cock­tails and drinks. Oth­er­wise, buy crack­ers and top with slices of smoked salmon and a sprig of fresh dill, and serve with honey mustard.

Where main cour­ses are con­cerned, you’ll want to mar­i­nate your roasts ear­lier, or opt to serve stews which you can make ahead, freeze, and then re­heat on the night of your party. Don’t be afraid to ask for help! Get the en­tire fam­ily in the kitchen and work on pre­par­ing to­gether. You’ll be able to spend time with your loved ones, and have fun at the same time. And if you want to save on time, re­mem­ber that car­bo­hy­drates like pota­toes, rice, grains, quinoa, and cous­cous among oth­ers, are easy to pre­pare and won­der­fully fill­ing.

Make your desserts a day ahead; bake cakes and store, cov­ered in cling, in the fridge, or serve ice-cream straight out of the freezer! At the end of the day, what’s truly im­por­tant to re­mem­ber is this: you don’t have to do ev­ery­thing your­self. Your guests will be happy for your com­pany, whether or not you make ev­ery­thing from scratch. If need be, let the lovely cake shops con­trib­ute to your sea­sonal spread! Don’t stress your­self out. A happy cook is a happy host, and a happy host is a happy guest.

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