The holidays are right around the corner and if you are planning on hosting a party, it’s time to get prepared! Our cooking expert Anna Carl has put together the ultimate planning timeline to help make your holiday meal planning easier and less stressful.
- Finalize menu, and guest list.
- Make place cards.
- Select/purchase decor.
- Develop shopping list.
- Create, order or purchase party favors.
- Wash and press linens.
- Organize, and wash serving dishes, utensils and glassware.
- Order flowers, pre-ordered catered items or baked goods.
A WEEK AHEAD
- Confirm guests.
- Shop for non-perishable ingredients.
- Prepare items that can be frozen.
- Clean the house and move furniture if needed.
A FEW DAYS AHEAD
- Shop for perishable items.
- Confirm catering or bakery orders.
- Purchase beverages.
- Set-up tables with linens and table decorations.
- Assemble baked dishes and hold in the refrigerator.
- Prepare vegetables to be recipe ready.
- Prepare sauces, dressings, marinades.
- Prepare desserts.
- Set up beverage station and stock with glasses, cocktail napkins and an ice bucket.
- Create baking schedule.
- Pick up catered or ordered items – including flowers.
- Finish prepping perishable items.
- Chill beverages.
- Set-up equipment. (Chafing dishes, drink decanters, crock-pots, coffee makers etc.)
- Set out flowers.
- Turn on music and adjust lighting.
- Make final food preparations.
- Coordinate baking times.
- Fill ice bucket.
- Set out snacks and appetizers.
Always remember that your guests typically want to spend more time with you. A little pre-planning could help you spend more time at the table, and less in the kitchen.